South African businessman Buys home for housekeeper of 30 years

Nancy Witbooi, a Bay housekeeper, recently took ownership of her first-ever home, which was bought for her by her employer as a token of his appreciation for her 30 years of service.

Real estate industry veteran Ian Olivier, area principal of Pam Golding Properties Port Elizabeth, described the moment when Witbooi received the keys to her home as one that will go down as one of the great moments of his real estate career.

“In all my years of real estate, this is the first time I’ve been mandated to find a property as a gift for another party,” said Linda de Lange, also with Pam Golding Properties PE and who had been working with the client to sell his own properties.

“After he sold his home in Sardinia Bay, he became concerned about his domestic worker, Nancy, who lived in a house on one of his adjacent properties. He told me he felt a responsibility for her after her many years of loyal service and wanted to buy her a house of her own. Nancy wanted a place in Walmer Township close to her family and spacious enough for her and her young granddaughter who lives with her, so I spoke to Leonard Ellis who had a listing there. He took Nancy and her employer to see it, and the rest is history,” De Lange said.

Listed for R110 000, Ellis says the businessman paid the full asking price in cash.

Conveniently positioned just inside Walmer Township, and close to a main transport route, the house comprises an open-plan living area/kitchen, bathroom and upstairs bedroom as well as a lock-up garage. And thanks to the businessman’s generosity it also has a brand-new stove – a Christmas present from his family.

De Lange added, “It makes me feel so good to see that there are people out there who really care about their domestic workers and where financially able, are prepared to help them acquire their own homes.”

This is not the only feel good story for the Pam Golding team. Ellis says he is also working with a client who wants to purchase a home for his grandparents.

“The buyer is a Gauteng businessman who, having upgraded himself as he puts it, now wants to do the same for his grandparents. He tasked me with finding a good house in a safe area, which I did and he’s put an offer in on it,” he says.

The property, which is in Bethelsdorp, is about 12km away from the Port Elizabeth Central Business District (CBD) and on the market for R600 000. It sits on one of the biggest stands in the area, is in immaculate condition and has the added bonus of a granny flat.

Ellis puts the price band of “affordable housing” in Port Elizabeth at between R80 000 and R450 000 and says it can typically be found in “townships” such as Zwide, Motherwell, Walmer Township and KwaZakhele as well as in the Central area.