About Me

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I am a qualified Attorney. I specialise in Property Law, Commercial Law, Corporate Law and Trusts.
 
Please visit our website at www.prop-law.co.za for more details.
 
I am an elected Committee Member of the Property Committee of the Association of Pretoria Attorneys and through my involvement, I like to ensure that I am constantly at the "sharp-end" of Conveyancing Practice.

I am the elected Chairman on the Gauteng Council of SAPOA. The South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) is the biggest and most influential institution in the property industry. SAPOA members control about 90% of commercial property in SA, with a combined portfolio in excess of R150 Billion (about $22 Billion). I am also on the National Council and the National Legal Committee of SAPOA.
 
Member of the Institute of Directors South Africa and Member of the Sirdar Governance Panel.

19 December 2013

Plett Harbour development proposal divides property owners

Plett Harbour development proposal divides property owners

The row over the controversial R4 billion planned small boat harbour at Plettenberg Bay is hotting up after three-dimensional graphic renderings of the development started circulating through the region.

Plettenberg Bay beachfront as it currently appears.

This comes just weeks after the final scoping report for the 87 000 sqm development by Western Cape Marina Investments was released and highlighted major environmental and economic concerns. The project will stretch from the Piesang River estuary and along the town's popular central beach.

Durban wants mall developer jailed

Durban wants mall developer jailed

The eThekwini Municipality wants Ravi Jagadasan, whose company was building the Tongaat mall that collapsed, killing two people, to be jailed for contempt of court.

Alternatively the city is asking that Jagadasan, the son of businessman Jay Singh, pay a fine.

It has also asked the Durban High Court to impose a fine on Jagadasan's company, Rectangle Property Investments.

The contempt of court application was filed last week and has been set down for February.

Property price growth up, but below peak

Property price growth up, but below peak

House prices, adjusted to take into account the impact of inflation, have declined cumulatively by 20.1 percent since the real house price peak at the end of 2007 but are still 29.3 percent higher than in November 2003, according to FNB.

In nominal terms, house prices have grown by 14.7 percent since the end of 2007 and by 129.3 percent since November 2003.

The outlook for the residential property market for next year is for a continuation of low house price growth.

The latest FNB house price index revealed that nominal house prices increased by 7.2 percent year on year last month compared with the revised 7.1 percent in October.

Tshwane cracks whip on firms digging up roads

Tshwane cracks whip on firms digging up roads


Electronic communication companies and service providers that have become accustomed to free-for-all digging up and laying of cables in the public road reserve in Pretoria will find the going harder in the near future.

Roads are dug up in Mamelodi. Companies laying electronic cables next to roads, disrupting traffic.


The City of Tshwane has approved laws and regulations, more than a decade in the making, to control and co-ordinate the increasing volume and complexity of services in the road reserve.

13 December 2013

Joburg call centre under fire

Joburg call centre under fire

Only 4 percent of calls to the City of Joburg's call centre for water and electricity problems are answered within one and two minutes.

12 December 2013

Pretoria getting largest statue of Mandela

Pretoria getting largest statue of Mandela

It is 9m tall, weighs four tons and is said to be the largest statue of Nelson Mandela.



The bronze-coated artwork spent hours on the road travelling from Cape Town this week and arrived yesterday at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, where it is to be assembled and unveiled on Monday.

'This is the largest Mandela statue in the world and we believe it is the best,' said Sarah Haines of Koketso Growth, which managed the project.

'Higher incomes needed now to qualify for bonds'

'Higher incomes needed now to qualify for bonds'

According to the latest statistics from BetterBond Home Loans, home buyers in SA now need to earn a gross monthly income of around R30 000 to buy an average home costing some R952 000.

The BetterBond figures also show that 64 percent of buyers currently have to pay a deposit in order to secure a home loan, and that the average deposit required for a home priced at R952 000 is around R99 000 - or 10,4 percent

'This puts the average home loan required to buy such a home at R853 000, and the average monthly bond repayment at just over R7400,' says BetterBond CEO Shaun Rademeyer.'Now in the days before the National Credit Act, when the simple rule-of-thumb was that your monthly bond repayment should not exceed 30% of your gross salary, that would have meant that a gross salary of R24 700 was enough.

EAAB warns against 'false courses'

EAAB warns against 'false courses'

Annette Evans, regional manager for the Institute of Estate Agents, Western Cape, wishes to draw attention to a recent announcement by the Estate Agency Affairs Board regarding the Continuous Professional Development courses offered.

Various property courses are currently being presented by a number of educational bodies and are being presented as being CPD accredited, she said. What many are saying is that CPD points will be accrued in accordance with the EAAB's recommended cycle.

Historic inner Joburg suburbs set for densification

Please see the Article from the Star Newspaper below.

I was priviledged to be invited to a SAPOA dinner with Mayor Parks Tau as part of the representation of the Property Industry where the Corridors of Freedom were presented.

The attendees at the Dinner received information packs from the City of Joburg containing detailed information on the Corridors of Freedom.  You are welcome to contact me at gareth@propertylaw.onmicrosoft.com if you would like more information.

I have also posted on the Blog on a number of occassions that I believe that desification of South African cities is the ONLY viable way of dealing with infrastructure issues (especially transport).

Gareth Shepperson


Historic inner Joburg suburbs set for densification

Joburg's Empire/Perth road corridor is set for major densification as it becomes the second area identified as a 'corridor of freedom' by the city.



This has brought many objections from residents who claim they have not been consulted properly and are concerned that the high-density, multiple-storey housing which is to be built, will destroy the character of the historic suburbs.

10 December 2013

Durban North property owners worried by golf course plan

Durban North property owners worried by golf course plan

Worried Durban North homeowners have accused Durban Country Club trustees of using 'smoke-and-mirrors tactics' and failing to explain the full impact of a proposed housing development at the Beachwood Golf Course in the upmarket coastal suburb.

Last week, homeowners from Fairways - which flanks the seaside course - met to hear what progress had been made to clear up their concerns over a multimillion-rand housing plan mooted by the Durban Country Club earlier this year.

09 December 2013

Objections flood in over Pretoria mining plan

I doubt whether these objections will stop mining if the prospecting proves to be successful because I have not seen any objections that would outweigh the benefits of opening a new mine.

Gareth Shepperson

Objections flood in over Pretoria mining plan

Objections have continued to pour in as preparations gained momentum for commencement of mining activities in Doornpoort, just north of the N4.

The Pretoria News reported this week that the Department of Mineral Resources had awarded a fiveyear prospecting right on a property in Doornpoort, 10km north of the CBD, to Gemsbok Platinum (Pty) Ltd, a subsidiary of JSE-listed Sable Platinum (Pty) Ltd.

'Stalking' new trend in property market

CAN SOMEONE PLEASE EXPLAIN THIS TO ME???

What is Bill Rawson actually saying?  How is it that when a buyer/investor does a bit of homework and monitors property prices in a given area that it amounts to 'stalking'?

Surely it is only savvy business practice to monitor the market before ploughing your hard-earned funds into an investment as large as property?

Only fools rush in blindly ... don't they?

Also, in my experience, Sellers don't usually thumb-suck a selling price and are almost always guided by someone with knowledge of the market (i.e. their Agent) when determining a selling price.  It is then in the Agent's own interest (as well as their client's interest) to seek the highest price possible.

Economics 101 ... isn't it?


I really don't understand what Bill Rawson is advocating in this article.

Gareth Shepperson

'Stalking' new trend in property market

A new trend is now making itself felt in the South African residential property market: the 'stalking' of homes.

Housing invaders take over Singh's Durban flats

Housing invaders take over Singh's Durban flats

A Newlands West housing development has been invaded by hundreds of informal settlement residents taking over the 96 incomplete flats being built by Jay Singh.

Hundreds of squatters invaded this Newlands West development on Tuesday.

06 December 2013

FAREWELL NELSON MANDELA - THANK YOU

Nelson Mandela (1918 - 2013)

05 December 2013

R100m and more for Cape Town's trophy homes

The super-rich pay top prices on the Atlantic Seaboard.


Home theatres, gyms, wraparound views, infinity pools, floating gardens and massage areas feature in some of Cape Town’s trophy homes, perched on the edge of the Atlantic Seaboard.


An apartment sold to a Nigerian buyer for R28m two months ago. The apartment measures approx 300 square metres and is located on Moses Beach, Clifton

Included in this coterie of exclusive homes are those in South Africa’s wealthiest street: Nettleton Road in Clifton, where two properties are currently on the market for over R100 million each (both on Seeff’s books). The foreign seller of one of them has attached a $15 million price tag for the property, which includes a home theatre, an entertainment area, a gym, wraparound views of the 12 Apostles and the Atlantic Ocean, en suites, staff rooms and a bar.

Leading agents say the strip of around twenty homes on the road are guaranteed prices upwards of R30-R50 million. A plot in the street recently sold for R35 million – a cool R30 000 per square metre.

Property analyst for Absa Home Loans, Jacques du Toit, is not surprised at the price tags. “There will always be extremely wealthy people who will be able to buy these kind of properties, despite the economic conditions. The scarcity of land in that area will also continue to drive the prices up.”

A contemporary three-bedroomed apartment in Palgrave, one of the newest residential blocks at the V&A Waterfront. The unit has views over the marina, canals and mountains and is priced at R22 million.

It’s in this sweet spot of the Atlantic Seaboard – which includes Fresnaye, Clifton, Bantry Bay and Camps Bay - that you will encounter the greatest mix of local and foreign buyers. You could find yourself rubbing shoulders with the royal family of Qatar – or sharing the paths to the beach with local top executives and magnates from Nigeria.

Seeff says about 28% of its sales in the area are to foreign buyers, with about 10% from African countries such as Nigeria, Namibia, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Some elite properties were snapped up earlier this year.

 Fresnaye

Pam Golding recently sold a home at the top of exclusive Fresnaye to a buyer from the United Arab Emirates for R110 million - the biggest sale in the area to date. The Stefan Antoni-designed house boasted a media centre, playroom, infinity pool, gymnasium and fittings and finishes from around the world.

Closer to town, Nigerian commodities tycoon, Abdulsamad Rabiu, recently featured by Forbes Magazine as Africa’s latest billionaire, is the new owner of a penthouse at The One & Only at Cape Town’s V & Waterfront.

Many wealthy snowbirds have also flocked here from colder climes, often spending the summer in their Atlantic homes. Pam Golding still has South Africa’s most expensive property, the ‘Enigma Mansion’ on its books, with a price tag of R300 million.

The 7 000 square metre property in Camps Bay boasts a flamboyant mansion, which took several years to build. The German seller has seen some offers, but a deal has not yet been made. Pam Golding has also made two recent sales to Mozambican buyers, and a R28 million property sale at the exclusive ‘Eventide’ development to a Nigerian buyer.

Foreign buying on the Atlantic Seaboard was much higher than the national average of 3.5% of the total housing sales in South Africa in the third quarter of 2013, says John Loos, FNB household and property sector strategist. This was an increase from a 2% foreign buying low in late 2010 but still far from the high of 6.5% in 2008.

 Fresnaye


The squeezed upper echelons

While Seeff says its seen a 16% increase in sales activity on the Atlantic Seaboard this year, this doesn’t reflect the picture of sales in a slightly lower category.

Many South Africans in the upper income bracket have been squeezed by difficult economic times.

 Fresnaye

Loos says the property market in the R4 million to R6 million category was the weakest of all market segments in the third quarter. Du Toit believes with more economic stability in Europe and a weak rand, South African could attract more foreign buyers.

The weaker rand has made South African properties 30% cheaper in US dollar terms over the past year and a half. But Loos says the argument over the weak rand is questionable. “The weakness of the rand has made property a lot cheaper in foreign denomination terms, but it’s driven by poorer sentiment to South Africa. Poor sentiment could hamper investment."

He adds that property is also not as popular an investment as it used to be and that foreign buyers have not come back in as strong numbers as they did in the pre-recession days.

Still, with the summer festive season nearly upon us, estate agents are gearing up for some intense bling property browsing in Cape Town this season. Seeff’s Atlantic Seaboard luxury market specialist, Lance Cohen, views November as an excellent sales month. He says in December sales are generally good, although many people take their time house-hunting and window-shopping rather than clinching a deal.

The festive season is followed by the traditionally excellent sales months of January, February and March. So it seems that for the narrow band that makes up Cape Town’s sunset strip, high prices may be the one constant. With little or no more land to develop, homeowners can afford to relax, sip their cocktails and enjoy the view.

 Fresnaye




The original article was posted on
MONEYWEB

Platinum mines proposed for the outskirts of Pretoria

Platinum mines proposed for the outskirts of Pretoria


Pretoria could see platinum mines on the outskirts of Doornpoort, about 10km north of the city.

However, some city residents and other affected parties are not in favour of the project.


The area where the platinum mine is proposed.
 
The Department of Mineral Resources has awarded a five-year prospecting right on a 2 779.64ha piece of land just north of the N4 to Gemsbok Platinum (Pty) Ltd, a subsidiary of JSE-listed Sable Platinum (Pty) Ltd.

Umhlanga land sale to 'accelerate pace of property development in Durban'

Umhlanga land sale to 'accelerate pace of property development in Durban'


In an unprecedented move, JSE-listed sugar and property giant Tongaat Hulett is to put a 42hectare section of prime land in its booming uMhlanga Ridgeside precinct up for sale in a single transaction early next year.

An aerial view of the R12-billion Ridgeside precinct being developed by Tongaat Hulett in uMhlanga.


The company said that the uMhlanga Ridge node had attracted more than R50 billion in investment since the start of land conversion from sugar cane to property development 17 years ago.

At present 164 000m2, with an investment value of more than R3.6bn, was under construction.

Building confidence remains static

Building confidence remains static


Confidence in the building industry remained at its highest level since 2008 in the fourth quarter with no change from the previous quarter.

The First National Bank (FNB)/Bureau for Economic Research (BER) building confidence index released yesterday revealed that confidence in the industry remained at 48 points on a 100-point scale in the fourth quarter after rising by 7 points in the third quarter.

04 December 2013

'Expect more building failures as South Africans flout regulations'

'Expect more building failures as South Africans flout regulations'
A leading building inspector has warned that fatal building failures in South Africa like the collapse of a new Tongaat shopping mall will proliferate due to a lack of adequate policing of building standards and of building materials.
John Graham, CEO of property inspection company HouseCheck says the Tongaat building collapse was likely caused by a combination of ineptitude including:

03 December 2013

Clifton plot on the market for R70m :

Clifton plot on the market for R70m :


A tract of land of around 2 500m2 is for sale in Clifton, priced at R70 million (R28 000/m2), including VAT.

A view of the site (outlined with a dotted line).


Land is at an absolute premium in the suburb, says Seeff's luxury market specialist, Lance Cohen.

'There is almost no land available in Clifton, Bantry Bay, Fresnaye and Camps Bay - and, certainly nothing of this size or location in Clifton,' he says.

'Banks should give better mortgage deals to long-standing clients'

'Banks should give better mortgage deals to long-standing clients'


Loyal clients should be rewarded with better mortgage deals and interest rates says Bill Rawson of the Rawson Property Group.

Tongaat Mall order 'a day late'

Tongaat Mall order 'a day late'


Controversial Durban businessman, Jay Singh, said he received a High Court order to stop work on the Tongaat Mall the day after its collapse.

Jay Singh in his Phoenix Industrial Park office, knee-deep in plans for the Tongaat Mall.


He also denied in an interview that the eThekwini Metro had sent him letters to halt construction. eThekwini officials had said they wrote to him four months before the cave-in, which killed two and injured many more.