By Nomali Cele
Afropolitans across South Africa are constantly working to improve their lives. This happens through looking for better opportunities, furthering their learning or even moving cities. The better they earn, the better their options for rentals get. Gugulethu Mfuphi featured the country manager for Adzuna, Jesse Green, on Kaya Biz to discuss the topic of earnings and rent in South Africa.
Adzuna is an online job search platform. Listing jobs across industries around the country, Adzuna is privy to what companies want to pay and can, generally, narrow it down by city and industry. For this study on rent in South Africa, Adzuna looked at what users were earning and how much of it went towards their monthly rent. This then coloured the picture concerning which South African cities are the most expensive to rent in. Not only that, but they also looked at which cities pay the best on average.
Cape Town came out as the best-paying city among 50 surveyed cities with its average advertised salary of R 374 173. But Gauteng was not to be counted out. Of the top five cities, four are in the province: Johannesburg R359,285, Sandton R358,728, Centurion R306,315 and Pretoria R231,553.
The study came out in January 2019 and in the context of the recent unemployment numbers, the bad numbers paint a sobering picture. For instance, Adzuna found that the Northern Cape is the most difficult province to find work. At the time of reporting, Namaqua and Kgalagadi were found to be the hardest areas in South Africa to find a job. There were too few vacancy adverts in the area.
How much do people are paying for rent in South Africa
Adzuna then used the salary data they have access to, in conjunction with property listings data, to determine averages for what people pay to rent in South Africa. The results showed that on average, the cost to rent in South Africa, or what people pay, in between 20 and 26% of their NET income.
So which are the most affordable cities to rent in South Africa?
If you are at all familiar with the South African social landscape, it’s probably not that surprising which cities are among the most “affordable” compared to what their residents earn.
Polokwane – 11% of monthly income spent on rent
Bloemfontein – 16% of monthly income spent on rent
Port Elizabeth – 17% of monthly income spent on rent
Johannesburg – 18% of monthly income spent on rent
East London – 19% of monthly income spent on rent
Cape Town might offer bigger salary averages, but it also has the highest rent in South Africa, according to Adzuna. Cape Townians were found to pay 38% of their income towards rent.
In his conversation on Kaya Bizz, Green cautioned job seekers against moving blindly for what cities offer in terms of pay. Break down the lifestyle and social costs of the move. Will rent cost more? Will schools cost more? Get the full picture before making the decision.
Listen to Gugulethu in conversation with Adzuna’s Jesse Green: