South Africa’s residential property market had its worst year in 12 years in 2008, according to the Standard Bank Residential Property Gauge released yesterday.

The bank reported that the median house price index recorded a decrease of 3.1percent year-on-year in December, bringing the average annual decline in 2008 to -0.3percent, the first fall since 1996.

The bank’s residential property book for December 2008 shows that the smoothed value of the median residential property financed by the bank was R592000. Standard Bank uses the median house price, which means half of all houses are more expensive and half less expensive than that price used.

The Times (South Africa)