Pandemic prompts lifestyle rethink

02 August 2021

Covid-19 has changed many things for us, including our view on how and where we live. We round up a few exciting developments across the country that consider these needs.

Despite disruptions caused by the global Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns, the property market continues to evolve and energise first-time buyers and property investors alike. These developers are heeding the call with dynamic projects on the cards.

Devmark Property Group

In an ever-changing world, co-living is a trendy antidote to limited affordable housing and is on the rise. Co-living is about creating one shared living space for many people with the view of interacting and working together. This has been readily adopted by young people around the world in cities such as New York, London and Tokyo. Devmark Property Group is bringing the movement to SA by launching its first YUCO co-living development in Cape Town.

With occupation expected in the middle of 2023, YUCO will offer 380 serviced and fully furnished studios with communal kitchens on each floor. There will be an array of work and play areas and it will also feature a wide variety of other communal areas including a gym, bar, swimming pool and volleyball court. Marketing manager at Devmark Property Group Dejane Styl says that while sales were initially affected by the lockdown, it has since picked up with many units being sold to local and international buyers. “An added advantage for investors is that they can enter into a property management agreement with YUCO management, rendering YUCO responsible for furnishing the apartment and the day-to-day running of the rental property, besides the management of all shared facilities. The units also form part of a pre-approved rental pool, making it easier to find good tenants,” she says.







Another upcoming project is De Zwartland Werf, a mixed-use development in Malmesbury in the Swartland region. It includes residential apartments, office space and a retail centre. The development even features a motor showroom. While elements of it operate like a commercial and convenience hub, it is also being designed to foster a farm and village atmosphere. Development director of Devmark Property Group, Jean-Pierre Nortier,  says the buildings will reflect an interpretation of the town’s architecture and history. He believes high property values in the metro and a desire for a quieter lifestyle is motivating more people to move to the countryside and commute to Cape Town, putting Malmesburg in a prime position.

Phase one of the development is set to be completed in late 2022 and offers an assortment of commercial, retail (including restaurants and entertainment) and residential space. Nortier is also optimistic about its sales performance. “We’re bullish about the future of De Zwartland Werf commercial precinct. We’ve already signed leasing agreements with both Clicks and Shoprite Checkers and are in the process of negotiating with other major retailers. All in all, we’re confident all the commercial space will be taken up in the near future,” he says. Styl remains positive about the outlook of the property market and expects it to see more growth despite the pandemic, due to the interest rate lowering last year. “It’s the perfect scenario for first-time homebuyers as well as property investors. Also, the pandemic has forced some into early retirement, which means they need to make decisions regarding where they want to retire sooner, as well as the lifestyle they’re after,” she says.

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