The small KwaZulu-Natal town of Verulam lies just 27km north of Durban, a stone’s throw away from the Gateway shopping centre and Umdloti Beach, and a few minutes’ drive from King Shaka International Airport. Renowned for its central location, the area is much more than just a convenient district hub, however – it’s also a tightly knit community with a deep connection to Indian culture, and a thriving industrial and farming sector.
“Verulam residents are predominantly Indian,” says Sunil Brijlal, franchisee of the Rawson Property Group’s Verulam franchise, “and Indian culture is very much a part of day to day life in the town. We have one of the oldest Hindu temples in South Africa the Sri Gopalall Temple which was opened by Mahatma Gandhi – and it bustles with prayer and wedding ceremonies all year round.”
According to Brijlal, faith is a core part of the community spirit in Verulam amongst all religions.
“We have several religious communities, all of which encourage strong family principles and have played an integral role in keeping generations of Verulam residents close to home. Many of our property owners have lived in the same house for decades, and the majority of our buyers are locals or people from nearby communities.”
This tradition has seen the Verulam property market remain remarkably stable over the years, with less volatility than neighbourhoods with faster property turnover. Demand generated by the industrial sector, however, has had an energising effect on the market.
“A lot of well-known consumer brands have factories in Verulam,” says Brijlal, “including Grafton Everest, Colgate Palmolive, Packo and Frimax. These industries draw staff from all over the country, which stimulates demand for property in our area.”
Despite the resulting price growth, Verulam properties remain firmly at a benchmark. Brijlal attributes this ceiling to strong opinions in a buyer-driven market.
“This is unlikely to change while current economic conditions hold true, but Brijlal predicts a spike in commercialisation of Verulam property when things begin to improve.
Brijlal says most home owners want property values to appreciate and so need to take as much care in choosing a neighbourhood in which they live as they do in deciding on features they want for their homes.
Interested buyers will find Verulam properties ranging from apartments in gated complexes to freestanding homes on generous plots. Low cost housing is available on the outskirts of town, while luxury homes tend to be in close proximity to popular amenities and good local schools.
“There’s something to suit every taste and budget in Verulam,” says Brijlal, “from solid, old-school homes to modern renovations. Buy-to-let is also a good option; as well priced properties mean rental yields can cover a large proportion of your bond.
“If you’re interested in finding out more about opportunities in the area,” he continues, “it’s a great idea to come and visit us at Rawson Properties Verulam. We can help you find the perfect property for your needs, and assist you in making a sound investment for your future.”