Today we explore the suburb of Linden with our seasoned agent, Loren Cantrell.
Why are you excited to be the Area Agent for Linden?
Linden is the new Parkhurst. There is a complete cultural regeneration happening as new blood moves into the suburb along with fabulous new restaurants, entertainment options and unique stores.
Historically an Afrikaans community, there is now a complete mix from young professionals through students, artists and entrepreneurs. I love that it isn’t a bubble and no matter who you are you can feel comfortable, chat to everyone and enjoy the energy of the community. Then there’s the incredible food and reasonable prices! I see the values of properties here increasing steadily over a long period.
Do you live in Linden?
Until recently I was based in Craighall, but I have just found a great apartment in Linden to move into with my two kids (Claire, 18 and Kyle, 14). We have opted for a three-bedroom lock-up-and-go in a light, airy block of flats.
I can’t wait to move in. I believe in living and breathing the area I represent and really connecting with the community. I have been introducing myself to the local schools and there is a very good offering of both public schools in the area like Hoërskool Linden and Laerskool Louw Geldenhys, as well as private schools such as De La Salle Holy Cross College and King David.
What is attracting buyers to Linden?
There are a lot of buyers in the market at the moment but many of them are attracted to the price range, property size, upbeat vibe and mix of houses and apartments on offer in Linden. It’s always hard to say what average price is, but right now it’s about R2.5 million for a house and R1 million for an apartment.
In Parkhurst, the house stands are on average 500 square metres where in Linden they range from 900 to 2500 square metres. This allows you to have a proper family home with a garden and a cottage.
We see a lot of young families moving in and renovating. Whether you enjoy the bar scene or prefer to have a picnic at Emmarentia Dam and the surrounding botanical gardens, Linden caters to all tastes.
What are some of your favourite Linden spots?
I love The Whippet. It’s central and I often meet friends there for a yummy breakfast or one of their delicious salads. One has to mention the legendary cheese shop, Cheese Gourmet, that has been here forever. And, of course, there’s the trendy new Brian Lara Rum Eatery with its tropical-themed comfort foods.
My kids love the area and I feel very safe letting them meet friends around here on their own. They love FAB on 7th street, a great new ice-cream joint.
New fresh restaurants are opening all the time and I hear of more and more people travelling to eat out in Linden restaurants from surrounding suburbs.
What is your property background?
I have always had property in my blood and have seen it from all angles. I started in 2005 in residential property and then, after selling a piece of land for a record price, I got a taste for the commercial side of things. In the commercial industry, I made deals with investors and also helped set up a fast-paced auction company. I was then introduced to a private investor who entrusted me to do due diligence, make acquisitions, and project manage refurbishments. I then decided to make the move back to residential property, where I was immediately intrigued by the new kid on the block: Leadhome.
What excited you about Leadhome?
Leadhome has taken everything positive out of traditional agencies and online platforms and combined them perfectly. I also thought it was refreshing that the seller shows his or her own home and I believe this early meeting of buyer and seller builds trust.
The process is much more attuned to getting a win-win for both parties.
Do you see this as a long-term move?
Yes. I love building relationships and my long-term plan is to dominate the Linden property market! I want to become the person that everyone comes to when they are looking to sell in this area. I am building my brand and my business here with the incredible support of Leadhome’s team and technology. When you list with Leadhome they aim for maximum exposure across all of the major online platforms. Enquires are then sent to our dynamic sales department who process leads and allow Leadhome to be highly productive and work at volume.
When I worked in the commercial field it was about facts, figures and numbers but with individuals, it’s a much more emotional process and selling your home for any reason is a big decision. I know if I deliver the best customer service possible I will get a reputation for helping people through this sensitive time. I am looking to establish a deep network through word of mouth and community involvement.
Why is pricing a property right so important?
Buyers are very educated now and have access to a lot of information. That’s why it becomes so important to price a property right. When Leadhome values a property we use a sophisticated valuation tool that takes huge amounts of data into account. We combine this information with the unique features of the home and the Area Expert’s market knowledge to reach a recommended selling price.
Where to from here for Leadhome?
The best is yet to come! We have new agents joining constantly and we are now covering Pretoria, Durban and Cape Town.
The ethics, energy and the culture of the company is so positive that everyone feels they are a part of something very exciting. The Area Experts may work on different areas but we are like-minded and have each other’s backs.
This post has been edited to accurately reflect our current business model.