In this edition of the Business Day Spotlight, we’re talking about consumer trends in the residential property market

Our host Mudiwa Gavaza is joined by Marcél du Toit, the CEO of residential property platform, Leadhome.

Join the discussion:

Du Toit begins by explaining Leadhome’s business, structure and operating model.

Leadhome is an estate agency that operates primarily online, and with a different structure. The company charges customers a flat fee of about R40,000 (for a property valued at about R1m) to find a buyer for their home, which is generally lower than the average commission charged by traditional estate agents.

Du Toit says the property company uses technology to give consumers a good experience in buying and selling homes.

Business Day Spotlight host Mudiwa Gavaza. Picture: DOROTHY KGOSI
Business Day Spotlight host Mudiwa Gavaza. Picture: DOROTHY KGOSI

The discussion then shifts to consumer trends, with Du Toit saying the local residential property market has been disrupted by Covid-19 in a number of ways.

The first three months of the national lockdown to stop the spread of the coronavirus saw little to no property transactions on their platform. But from June, there has been a recovery driven by low interest rates and the government’s encouragement to banks to lend money to consumers.

Du Toit notes that Covid-19 has forced many to work and learn from home and this is affecting demand for property in certain areas. Traditionally, people have tended to want to be close to places of work and school, making cities like Johannesburg attractive. But remote working means families can relocate from cities to coastal towns, like Knysna, without affecting productivity.

Despite this apparent boom, Du Toit says the rental property market has not fared as well. He explains that constrained consumers that have lost incomes or employment cannot pay rent as they did before the lockdown.

The discussion also focuses on Leadhome’s business model, work from home and online learning effects on property, global trends and disruption to the market.

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 Business Day Spotlight is a MultimediaLIVE production.

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