For as long as anyone can remember there has been a certain rivalry between Cape Town and Johannesburg. Be it in sporting, financial or personal terms, this battle about who is the best has raged on unabated. Ask any Capetonian or Jo’burger and each will pick his or her own city over the other. When it comes to choosing property for sale, which might be better: Cape Town or Johannesburg?
Price of Living
It’s generally thought that the price of living in Johannesburg is far greater than in Cape Town. Simply put, that’s correct. Recent stats indicate that you need to earn around 3% more in Jo’burg to have the same quality of life as you would have in Cape Town. Interestingly, the cost of living, whether that be renting or purchasing property, is in fact higher in Cape Town.
Rental prices are significantly higher in the Cape Town CBD, while purchasing an apartment there will also set you back more than Johannesburg. Apartment rentals are upwards of 20% higher in the CBD, with purchase prices over 30% more in Cape Town.
There is plenty debate about who has it better – the coast of the Cape Peninsula or the veld of Northern Escarpment. To pick between the two is a matter of personal preference. However, tourist stats do show that our foreign visitors like to visit Cape Town more than anywhere else in the country. With one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World dominating the landscape, Cape Town does seem to attract more jet-setting tourists than other cities in South Africa.
Here things become a little heated. Cape Town is one of the most beautiful cities in the world but isn’t known for being one of the friendliest. Jo’burg, on the other hand, has a true cosmopolitan feel to it. The City of Gold embraces those who visit it in such a friendly manner that it’s hard not to feel at home while you are there.
However, the price of lifestyle goods such as clothes and shoes are heavily in favour of the Southern Coast. A pair of leather shoes costs a whopping 55% less in Cape Town than in Johannesburg. Other costs such as petrol, public transport and groceries are also higher in the North.
It would seem that the best answer is to own property in Jo’burg, while renting in Cape Town – that is if you have the money to invest. Salaries in Johannesburg are significantly higher than in the Cape, making it a perfect place to invest any extra funds you might have in property. Many Gauteng residents have almost 30% more disposable income every month, making their ability to rent more feasible than down South.
Buying in a lower cost market also means your return on the investment will hopefully be greater in the long run. If you’re living in Cape Town and are looking for property for sale there, aim away from the CBD. Prices do drop significantly when you look slightly further afield. Also consider ways you could use a property purchase to work for you, helping cover the higher investment costs.
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