The latest Propstats data shows that the Hermanus property market has just surpassed the R2bn mark (over 1200 transactions) for the 12-months to end of September.
According to Paul Kruger, Seeff’s licensee for the area this is quite an achievement. Where it was once a small holiday town, Hermanus is today one of the most dynamic coastal property markets of the Cape and it continues to perform well above expectation, despite the poor economic climate.
The town and its surrounds have become a sought-after property destination with luxury properties now reaching price levels of R20m-R40m for a top class seaside location. A recent New World Wealth Report also named Hermanus as one of the most popular destinations for multi-millionaire-owned second homes, ranking alongside the likes of Cape Town, Knysna, Plettenberg Bay and Zimbali.
Position and views are all important and buyers are prepared to pay for the privilege of a beachfront location and unobstructed views according to Kruger. The latest Lightstone data shows that the median price for the area is up by over 40% in under five years and about 12% over the last two years.
Part of the attraction, is the close proximity to Cape Town and the international airport which is under two hour’s drive from Hermanus. This ease of access means that it has become a sought-after destination for Johannesburg and Pretoria’s wealthy holiday home and retirement buyers, as well as for UK and European buyers looking for a summer home in South Africa.
The town has also been a popular spot for semigrating buyers as well as those who can work remotely. Hermanus now offers excellent facilities and amenities for residents and visitors alike. It is the top whale watching destination, hosts several events, boasts excellent schools, sport clubs, medical facilities and just about every land and water-based leisure activity that you could want for. And, says Kruger, we even have a wine route, the Hemel en Aarde Valley.
Lightstone data reveals that Hermanus is home to an adult population of over 38 400. More than 76% of all property, is full title, but there are a number of estates including fabulous retirement estates suited to older buyers, especially fifty-plussers, says Kruger. There is a good spread of buyers across the age demographics.
But, you do not have to be a millionaire to buy in Hermanus as Kruger says there is a broad spread of property on offer, ranging from affordably priced apartments in the R500 000-R1.2m range to houses that start from around R600 000 to R1.6m range. Luxury houses range from around R1.6m to R6.6m on average, but top end properties can range to about R40m.
One of the most exclusive historic properties, Marigold Cottage, a Cape Dutch gabled home that originally dates to 1925, located in the sought-after suburb of Voëlklip, has been listed exclusively by Seeff. It is priced at R35 million.
To date, the property has only had five owners according to Lynda Terblanche, the exclusive sole agent from Seeff. Following a devastating fire in 1996, the current owners rebuilt and restored the house, but with modern living in mind. What you now have, is the old world charm of original fixtures and fittings imported from Europe and as far afield as Australia, yet a fabulously liveable modern home with panoramic sea views and beach and nature reserve access, she says.
The property is a much admired landmark in the area and enjoys the best location in the investment suburb of Voëlklip, says Terblanche. From your porch, you can watch the whales and dolphins frolic in the ocean. Stepping out of the front gate, you are in the coastal strip of Fernkloof Nature Reserve with views across the bay to Hermanus village.
You also have quick access to the popular Voëlklip beach as well as Kammabaai, a popular surfing beach. Langbaai, a secluded swimming spot with charming coves to explore is also close by and within five minutes from the property you will find Grotto beach which extends around the curve of Walker Bay to Gansbaai over a distance of about 25km and is bordered by the CapeNature Reserve.
As a picturesque backdrop, you have mountains that peak at 842m and make up 18sqkm of the Fernkloof Nature Reserve, with 60kms of trails to explore within easy reach by foot from the house.
The double-storey home offers three bedrooms, ample living areas and extras such as a separate study, wine cellar, garage and workshop. The beautiful finishes include wooden sash windows, white-washed panelled ceilings, solid wood cabinetry, a country-styled kitchen, bathrooms with Victorian baths, sanitary ware and taps and fireplaces in the living room and main bedroom.