How eco-estates have driven commercial growth in Ballito
Category Chas Everitt Commercial Division
Just a few decades ago, Ballito was a small town surrounded by vast tracts of undeveloped land. However, the real potential of that old sugar-cane land has been steadily realised through the development of some game-changing estate developments.
"It's incredible to think that Ballito was established just over 60 years ago, at a time when buyers could purchase land for as little as R790/ha," says Chas Everitt International commercial manager Dennis Davidson.
"The past six decades have brought about growth and transformation in just about every sector of the local property market - from affordable holiday accommodation and luxury residential homes to up-and-coming commercial and industrial precincts.
"And development has taken place at such a rapid rate that many people still think Ballito is largely a holiday town - they haven't yet realised that it is also a well-established residential and commercial destination that is renowned for its environmentally-friendly eco-estates and mini-factories with office space."
Having operated in Ballito's commercial property sector for many years, he says, he has come to realise just how much the town's growth has been influenced by residential factors.
"For example, I regularly get inquiries from business owners who want to relocate their businesses to Ballito after they have found their 'forever' home here."
Davidson says the first consideration for such buyers is usually to have their home and business in close proximity so that they spend less time and money commuting.
"And I have found eco-estates to have a particularly high appeal when they are looking for a place to live. I can't say exactly why this is, but I believe it's because many of them desire luxury without compromising on the environment around them.
"Additionally, because these estates are built around sustainability where nature conservation is made a priority, homes are surrounded by a range of outdoor activities such as nature hikes, mountain biking and bird-watching, which really boost their appeal."
Seaward Estates and Simbithi Eco-Estate are excellent examples of this type of development - although the popularity of eco-estates is now also spilling over into the neighbouring coastal towns of Shaka's Rock and Salt Rock.
And now, he says, developers are catering to a rising demand for office parks within these eco-estates, which allow residents to locate their businesses even closer to home and literally walk to work.
"This has turned out to be a resounding success and I'm sure we will see more developments like this in the near future."
Affordable rental rates
Meanwhile, Davidson says, affordability is another major factor contributing to Ballito's strong commercial growth.
"I often receive inquiries from business owners based in Gauteng and central Durban looking to relocate to Ballito after they have researched the price of offices, warehouses or retail space in the town."
He explains that rental rates can range anywhere from R55-R70/sqm for a 150 - 250sqm factory/warehouse, R110 - R140/sqm for an 80 - 200sqm office and R140 - R250/sqm for a 60sqm - 200sqm retail space.
"Across the board, Ballito is cheaper than most places in KwaZulu-Natal, and much of the commercial space is brand new and situated within 2km of the N2 freeway."
Speaking of the new developments that are currently planned for the town, Davidson says that an exciting upcoming development known as Imbali Park is nearing completion.
"The precinct will accommodate light industrial businesses and upmarket office space and is ideally situated close to major freeways, including the N2, R21, N12, N17 and N3.
"And as the residential market has such an influence on the growth of the commercial market, we also expect to see more business parks like this coming up all around Ballito.
"In short, the more eco-estates and other developments that appeal to business owners relocating to Ballito, the more commercial expansion there will be."
To find out more about the commercial properties available in Ballito, speak to our helpful agents today.
Author: Chas Everitt International Property Group