Number of black property buyers rises

Number of black property buyers rises

Number of black property buyers rises

The number of black home buyers entering the residential property market is increasing steadily as the socio-economic tables turn, with the number of black home loan applicants already exceeding those of white applicants.

Saul Geffen, chief executive of bond originator ooba, says the number of applications by black buyers represents 45 percent of total home loan applications, and the number of applications submitted by white home buyers represents only 41 percent of the total.

Black buyers, however, represent only 39 percent of the number of the total approved home loans, whereas whites represent 47 percent of the t otal number of approved home loans. This ratio has changed considerably since last year, when blacks represented 30 percent and whites 56 percent of approved home loans.

For first-time homebuyers, the trend is clearly skewed in favour of black applicants. Currently, first-time homebuyers represent 49 percent of the total number of applications, and 44 percent in approved loans. Of these first-time applicants, 59 percent are black and 27 percent white.

When it comes to approved home loans, 55 percent of the t otal number of first-time homebuyer approved loans are for black applicants compared to 31 percent for whites. This ratio has also changed considerably since last year, when black applicants represented 48 percent and white applicants 36 percent of approved home loans.

Geffen says the higher levels and sustained increases in black buyers can be attributed t o t he changing economic demographic, as well as the fact that there are more buyers at the lower-to middle-income levels than first-time buyers. Clearly, the improved property market conditions play a role, which has resulted in more people being able to afford property.

"The shifting economic base in South Africa, largely influenced by the emerging black middle class, means the racial demographic of homebuyers is changing. The latest statistics also reveal that applications by Asian and coloured applicants remained steady year-on-year at around 8 percent and 5 percent respectively.

"The growth in first-time applications from black applicants can be attributed to improved property market conditions, a reduction in interest rates of 650 basis points since 2008, coupled with subdued property price inflation, improved bank approval rates and lower deposit requirements."

Geffen says first-time home buyers who want to take advantage of the favourable market should ensure that they have large enough deposits to put down as this will result in a more favourable interest rate, which significantly reduces the total cost over the term of the loan.

"A meaningful deposit significantly improves a buyer's chance of getting a home loan approved. Other factors that could boost the chances of a successful bond application include having positive credit profiles and stable employment histories. These reflect a pattern of consistent income, which is key when lenders assess bond applicants' risk profiles."

Geffen advises buyers to qualify for home loans through banks or bond originators before looking for properties.

"This will give buyers a good sense of the prices of properties they could get loans for. The qualification process can also pick up issues on credit records that will need to be addressed before formally applying for loans. The process streamlines the home-buying process and ensures that buyers can negotiate from a position of strength."

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition)


Denny Crane

Denny Crane
It's not me ... yet. Denny Crane from the TV series Boston Legal. Click on picture if you're not sure who he is!