Fifty percent of South Africans feel that the property market will continue its downward trend until the end of this year, according to the results of an online survey released by mortgage originators ooba.

The survey was conducted to assess South African property owners’ attitude towards the property market.

ooba forecasts that the current low level of activity in the property market and negative property price growth with continue until mid-2009.

'Thereafter we expect that the improvement in affordability and sentiment will have a positive impact on house price growth and that activity in the property market will significantly pick up going into 2010,' said Saul Geffen, chief executive of ooba.

Times (Johannesburg)