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Property agents losing out on foreign sales

Published Feb 18, 2021

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Foreign investment into the South African real estate sector has been impacted by the international travel restrictions implemented in the response to the pandemic, report Re/Max living agents in Cape Town.

From March 2020 until January 2021, the agency has made almost 40 sales to foreign buyers, but this has not been easy.

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Under normal circumstances, many directors from American Companies with offices in South Africa make regular visits to the country, and while here they would hunt for possible holiday homes, says Marius Jordaan.

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However, this could not happen under the travel restrictions.

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Some agents have also lost sales due to the pandemic. In one case, Melanie Stavropoulos explains that a couple from the USA had been keen to purchase a property in Gardens as their daughter lived in the area.

“They were in the process of making an offer on a home in the area when things started to worsen both here and in the USA. At the end of the day, owing to the uncertainty, they didn’t buy anything.”

Gunnar Hagelberg also lost out on a sale to a German buyer who came to the country in October to view properties in Bantry Bay and Sea Point and returned in December to make a final decision.

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“They arrived as planned and meant to stay for two weeks, but out of fear that airlines would stop flying out of South Africa due to the increased infection rate, they changed their tickets and left three days after their arrival without viewing the property.”

Adrian Goslett, chief executive of Re/Max of Southern Africa says it is hoped that the distribution of the vaccine will soon minimise the threat of infection so that international borders can reopen, which should help stimulate foreign investment within the South African real estate market.

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