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New homes in Emalahleni are selling like hotcakes, thanks to the growing
shortage of accommodation for thousands of new residents in the
Mpumalanga coal town.
“For example,” says Hein Strydom, owner of the local Aida franchise, “more than half the 150 units in two new developments we are marketing have been sold within a couple of weeks, and we expect the rest to be snapped up before long.
“About 170 units in two earlier developments by the same developer, Four Arrows, were also recently sold out and built within a matter of months.”
He says there is “huge pressure” on the local residential market at the moment because of the R80bn Kusile power station project, and the expansion of several nearby coal mines to supply the power station, the first part of which will becoming on line in 2013.
“Thousands of people are working on these projects and will be here at least until the power station is finished in 2017, but Emalahleni (formerly Witbank) has a limited supply of properties to buy and especially to rent, and there is literally nothing else of the same size or quality at the prices being asked for units in the new developments.”
The first of these projects is Village Green 2, to be developed in two phases, which offer a choice of two and three-bedroom full title and sectional title homes in a gated security estate at prices from R469 000 to around R599 000, including all transfer and bond costs.
The single-story homes in phase one range in size from 111sqm to 129sqm and the double-storey units in phase two from 126sqm to 148sqm. All have two bathrooms and a double carport and the monthly levies start at around R350.
The second new development is Khaya Lami, the first energy-wise estate in Emalahleni, which is within 500m of a primary school, a secondary school, and a shopping centre. It also offers a choice of two and three-bedroom homes with two bathrooms.
Single storey units are priced from around R499 000 for 95sqm while the double-storey units start at R529 000 for 118sqm, also including all costs. The eco-friendly (and cost-saving) features of each house include a solar-assisted geyser, switchover system, energy-saving lights and aluminium window frames.
Buyers in the two developments, says Strydom, are a largely a mixture of first-time homeowners and investors who have been quick to spot the potential in a town short of rental properties.
“Residents, we expect, will be mostly upwardly mobile singles and couples with one or two young children – and the developer is also providing child-safe play areas for this reason.”
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