Some of the last remaining vacant lots in one of South Africa’s most expensive suburbs, Clifton, are set to be auctioned in June.
The beachside suburb on Cape Town’s Atlantic Seaboard is home to some of the country’s most sought-after properties, but in recent years it has reached an “expansion standstill” as development reaches it’s peak capacity.
Some of the country’s most luxurious beachfront villas will also feature in the auction catalogue in June, with international investors licking their lips at discounted evaluations due to the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on the South African rand.
The auction will be viewable via a virtual stream to mitigate the risks associated with the pandemic.
Appeal for international investors
The vacant lot up for grabs boasts some pretty incredible specs, with panoramic views of the ocean. Joff van Reenen, Director and Lead Auctioneer of High Street Auctions, said that there is substantial interest in the property.
“At our auction in September 2019 a Cape Town buyer paid R20.35 million for one of the last undeveloped residential stands in Clifton – that one a spectacular bungalow site below Victoria Road overlooking 4th Beach.
“At 455m² this more elevated stand on sale in next month’s virtual live-stream auction is slightly larger than the 417m² plot that went under the hammer last year.”
“Situated on the Apostles Stairs with sweeping views over the Atlantic Ocean, it’s also just a short stroll to Clifton’s wind-free beaches and offers buyers the opportunity to design their dream home from scratch with every nook and fixture, fitting and gadget shaped around their desires and needs.
Van Reenen said that the rand taking as substantial blow following two downgrades by international ratings agencies to junk status – not to mention the COVID-19 crisis’ impact on the economy – but is confident that this will encourage international buyers to go in for a bargain.
“We’re already fielding inquiries about this site from international buyers in several countries. With the rand having depreciated 22.9% against the US dollar since January, according to the Reserve Bank, international buyers are effectively purchasing at massively discounted rates at the moment paying in forex.”
Planning permissions in place
The property will also catch the attention of buyers due to the fact that in the strictly regulated area, where planning permissions are notoriously difficult to procure from the municipality, the properties up for auction already have these documents approved.
“A massive bonus for such a stringently regulated zoning area is that plans have been approved by the city council for the property to be extended onto the deck and for the height to be increased. The approved plans also include a swimming pool,” he said.
The auction live stream is open to public viewing, but only compliant and registered bidders may participate and bid in sales. The next virtual auction will be streamed live from noon on 9 June.