Message from the CEO


Jonathan Russell Smiedt

Chief Executive Officer

South Africa is standing on the brink of the new fiscal year and many people are still mulling over the annual budget for 2017, as delivered by Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan.

While the Ministers budget did not cause shockwaves, and was relatively predictable, we can only hope that it will encourage investor confidence, particularly foreign buyers, to continue purchasing investment properties in our country.

This is one area where foreign investment still yields great results and we regularly see foreign buyers showing an interest in the high end properties we take to auction each month.

Despite the prophets of doom forecasting a downward spiral in the property sector, we are still observing an increase in the demand for residential property in coastal areas throughout the country. In addition a continued demand for commercial properties is ever present, where yields and property position, play a major factor for buyers who are indeed prepared to pay a premium price for the right investment opportunity.

A few days ago ClareMart Auction Group disposed of 16 development properties, on instruction from the City of Cape Town to a packed auction floor. Over 300 people attended the auction and nearly 100 bidders were registered. The City had expected the properties to yield approximately R8m and was pleasantly surprised to learn that we secured over R15m. These properties were spread across Cape Town, from Gugulethu to Somerset West.

Many more government departments are seeing the value of taking their assets to auction and whilst being proud to be appointed by governments around the country, we hope to expand our relationship with the various municipalities and provincial governments nationwide.

An immaculate Bo-Kaap, historic home with panoramic views, was on the books of several estate agents for months, without any results. Our Team convinced the seller to take this property to auction and within days of receiving the mandate, our on-site auction saw this home selling for over R6m. Once again we demonstrated that we are simply quicker at securing an acceptable cash offer for sellers than going the traditional estate agent route.

Whilst all methods of disposal are available to sellers, quick cash offers in a 4 week process, which is what our auctions provide, are becoming the popular choice with Sellers in the know.

Institutions have endless options available in disposing of repossessed properties, yet we continue to be the medium of choice in facilitating these sales as we continue to produce results in this sector.

We are the only mechanism that allows the seller to sell voetstoots in terms of the Consumer Protection Act and we have a database of thousands of qualified cash buyers looking to purchase. Selling your property with a host of suspensive conditions imposed upon you by your realtor, should be a rejected outright, when a seller clearly has the auction option available.

On Thursday 2 March we are taking over 80 properties to auction on the instructions of one of SA’s largest banks, to be held in Pretoria. Our database and website have generated close to 600 enquiries from around the country and if the number of enquiries is anything to go by, we will again prove the success of the auction process.

We look forward to bringing you more exciting investment opportunities in the coming month.

See you on the auction floor.

Jonathan Russell Smiedt
Chief Executive Officer