J’Bay short of accommodation

Cindy Preller

A SHORTAGE of rental properties will be experienced this holiday season in one of the country’s favourite holiday destinations.

Just Letting Jeffreys Bay owner Wilna du Raan confirmed that rental properties were very sought after in Jeffreys Bay and surrounds, including flats, townhouses and free-standing homes.

“In fact, there are not enough places to rent for the influx of holiday makers and the properties that are available are very expensive. Some clients have actually opted to holiday in Hartenbos or Mossel Bay instead,” Du Raan said.

Rental homes have pushed up from an average of between R6000 and R7000 a month, to R10000 a month, with a home in Marina Martenique being rented for R13000 a month, Du Raan said.

The shortage is attributed to the two wind farm developments, with a third just approved, in the region.

The biggest wind farm in the region, Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm, has 650 workers on site, of whom 250 to 300 are visitors to the area and therefore renting accommodation in various forms, says Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm general manager Mark Pickering.

“On the whole, our employees and contractors have been very happy with the general standard of accommodation available. The boost to the local economy is far reaching. In addition to increasing the demand for rental homes, apartments and other accommodation in the area, there is an increase in job creation and skills development.

“Considering that this is the first phase in the renewable energy industry, we expect continued growth both locally and nationally.

“Our project most definitely has an indirect effect on businesses,” Pickering said.

Pam Golding Properties area manager Jaco Bothma said while the boom in rental property due to wind farm employment is expected to be of a temporary nature until construction is completed, it has generally fuelled the demand for rentals in the price range from R5000 to R8000 a month, with some professionals renting properties for as much as R19000.

“With the busy December holiday period, our holiday rental market has picked up, with holiday rental properties being let from R700 per day for a two-bedroom apartment to R1500 a day for a three- bedroom home and up to about R3000 a day for beachfront homes with four to five bedrooms,” Bothma said.

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