While taking the step from renting to buying is very exciting, it is a major financial commitment that should not be entered into without the proper consideration, says Adrian Goslett, CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa. He notes that there are a number of essential aspects that should be carefully measured beforehand to ensure that the buyer is making the right decision and is purchasing a property that meets their needs both now and in the future. “Buying a home is not a decision that will only affect the buyer’s financial well-being now - it will have ramifications in the future as well. That is why it is so important for a buyer to make an informed decision based on their life plans and what their criteria is at the moment and how their plans and needs could change over the next five to ten years,” says Goslett. “Making a rushed decision and purchasing a home that will not fit into your future plans could end up costing a lot more money in the long run. Property should be viewed as a long-term investment and, as such, decisions regarding property should be made with future goals and plans in sight.” He notes that before a buyer goes out looking for a property, they need to sit down and decide what features they currently need in a home and what features they may need in the future. Some things to consider would be the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the need for a garden or the number or type of parking facilities. There may also be special criteria such as energy-efficient features, a swimming pool and fireplace or wheel-chair accessibility. Goslett says that no matter what type of housing a buyer chooses, they must have a clear idea of their needs today as well as their possible future needs. These are some examples of questions home buyers might ask: • Do I need a home office? • Do I plan to have children? • Do I have children who will be moving out soon? • Am I close to retirement? • Will I need a home that can accommodate different life . . .
Prepare to swirl, sip and savour your way through South Africa’s world-class wines at the inaugural TOPS at SPAR KwaMashu Wine & Lifestyle Festival, happening from 25 – 26 July 2014 at the K-CAP Ekhaya Multi Arts Centre in KwaMashu, Durban. K-CAP Film School will be transformed into a soiree of wine, music, glamour and glitz, with visitors being treated to the VIP experience that the TOPS at SPAR wine festivals are famed for. 'Bringing the heartbeat to the festival is avid believer in youth empowerment and flag bearer for House music, DJ Euphonik, who says it will be his aim to “put smiles on people’s faces” on launch night, Friday the 25th July, as he promises to play his unique upbeat music to guests and visitors whilst they learn the art of wine tasting.' Opening times are Friday – 6 pm to 10 pm and Saturday – 5 pm to 9 pm. Tickets cost R150 and are available through Webtickets.co.za. TOPS at SPAR KwaMashu Wine & Lifestyle Festival Dates: Friday 25 – Saturday 26 July 2014 Times: Friday, 6 pm to 10 pm and Saturday – 5 pm to 9 pm Venue: Ekhaya Multi Arts Centre, 25 Giya Road, KwaMashu, Durban Author: Nissin Laby from KwaMashu Wine & Lifestyle Festival. More Info link: Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/KwaMashuFest Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KwaMashu-Wine-Festival Images: For high res version/s of One image/s please contact: KwaMashu Wine & Lifestyle Festival. YouTube: CLICK HERE to submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .
Award-winning wine writer and British Wine Master Tim Atkin has given a unanimous thumbs up for Raats Family Wines by awarding all six wines in their portfolio with scores of more than 91 points. These ratings will be published in his annual SA Report, which is due for release on the 1st of July. Leading the pack is the 2012 MR de Compostella with 95 points, followed by the 2012 Raats Old Vine Chenin Blanc and 2011 Raats Family Cabernet Franc on 93 points, the 2012 vintages of the Raats Dolomite Cabernet Franc and Raats Family Red Jasper with 92 points and the Raats Original Chenin Blanc with 91 points. Atkin has been a vocal supporter of South African wines and proclaimed South Africa as “currently the most exciting wine-producing country in the Southern Hemisphere, thanks to a combination of old vines, young winemakers and new thinking” in his 2013 special report. Atkin has been visiting the Cape winelands for over two decades and tasted over 1000 wines for his 2014 report. He also mentions that he feels very positive about the future of Cape wine and that he particularly enjoyed visiting the Cape at a time when the local industry is so exciting. Owner and cellar master Bruwer Raats was absolutely stumped by these results. “For one wine to be scored over 90 by Atkin is already a great achievement, but to have all my wines scoring this well is incredible. Tim has a great reputation and an international following, so this accolade means a lot. I am absolutely delighted as this once again proves that Raats Family Wines consistently produce wine of world-class quality, which has always been one of my guiding principles when it comes to crafting the wines in our portfolio. We have now been producing wines for fifteen years and there is a library of consistent, world-class wines spanning this period and standing as testament to our commitment to quality winemaking,” mentions Raats. For more information, visit www.raats.co.za Author: Ronelda Visser from . . .
A season of optimism and growth, such as what Africa enjoys at the moment, is at the same time a season for ethical leadership and wise stewardship. The Business Ethics Network of Africa (BEN-Africa) speaks to this imperative by strengthening the commitment and competence of Africans to do business with moral integrity. This is done through robust dialogue and collaboration amongst Africans sharing a commitment to sustainable development through ethical and responsible business practices. The dialogue takes the shape of many engagement initiatives such as the annual conference hosted by the Business Ethics Network Africa (BEN-Africa). As BEN-Africa convenes in Stellenbosch South Africa this year (2014) the conference theme will be Equal in an Unequal World. The aim of the meeting will be to pursue answers to the question on how to guide business in eliminating unjust inequalities, and promoting sustainable development and an economy based on fundamental ethical values. The conference programme is planned around the following activities: • Keynote addresses that will focus on Quality Education in an Unequal Society; Bridging Inequality through Philanthropy and Global Responses to Inequality from a Business Ethics Perspective. • Panel discussions on Inequality Challenges in the African Context and Business and Business Education: Stretching or Bridging inequality? • Learning journeys to sites where conference participants will engage with the manifestations of inequality in the South African society • Papers based on the conference theme presented by scholars from various countries. • A gala dinner where thought and practice leaders in business ethics will be honoured. The 14th annual BEN-Africa conference will take place at the STIAS Wallenberg Centre, Stellenbosch Cape Town, South Africa from 1-3 October 2014. Registrations are currently open online via http://www.benafrica.org/join-us/ben-africa-conference-registration-2014. Conference costs . . .
If you are planning of taking a year off from core academic studies, the Gap Year Course offered by The Hurst Campus can benefit you in a number of ways in creating a enhanced career path. Being a passionate culinary institute in South Africa, its Gap Year Classes can broaden your mind with all the required skills to be a professional in the hospitality and tourism industry. Starting in July 2014, the Gap Year Course is targeted at students with the desire to have a rewarding career as a professional chef. The 15 Months Advanced Food and Wine Diploma Course will welcome all the talents from various parts of the world to polish their culinary skills guided by experts with years of experience in this arena. The institute is well reputed among its competitors because they teach classic French technique to create modern new dishes. In addition, the curriculum of the Gap Year Course will comprise of theoretical learning, detailed discussions and hand-on training to brush up those with basic skills and allow the learners to comprehend the entire subject in depth. The institute’s main intension is to equip all aspiring students with the talent and proficiency that potential employers look forward to having in their kitchens. By imparting the skills, experience and knowledge to prepare menus and to work with the highest standards, graduates from the academy will be easily employed among renowned industry leaders. To guarantee job creation, The Hurst Campus maintains superior relationships with a number of hospitality and chalet companies, from across South Africa and abroad. Thus, the academy invites those with talen to turn their dreams into reality by joining their Gap Year Course, starting soon Author: isha soni from The Hurst Campus. More Info link: http://www.thehurstcampus.co.za/courses/gap-year-courses Images: For high res version/s of One image/s please contact: The Hurst Campus. CLICK HERE to submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .
During the colder months households generally tend to use a lot more energy and resources trying to stay warm and often have to pay the associated costs. However, whether homeowners are hoping to ease some of their impact on the environment or just want to save some money, there are ways that they can reduce their energy usage while still keeping the elements at bay, says Adrian Goslett, CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa. He notes that essentially saving on energy usage is cutting down on electricity usage. “Finding ways of conserving electricity will lower the winter monthly expenses,” says Goslett, “This may require an initial marginal investment on the homeowner’s part in improving the home’s energy efficiency, however the financial benefits will far outweigh the initial cost in the long term.” Goslett provides homeowners with the following energy-saving tips: Make sure that home is properly insulated “If homeowners are spending money to warm up their homes, the last thing they need is for the heat to be able to escape and be wasted. While windows that don’t close properly are a potential problem that should be addressed, because warm air rises, a large portion of the heat escapes through the ceiling. Approximately 50% to 80% of the homes’ heat will dissipate through a poorly insulated ceiling. Proper insulation in the ceiling can reduce heat loss to just 3%,” says Goslett. He notes that ceiling insulation should be the only insulation required considering our South African climate; however it is still vital to check whether there are other areas in the home that may require some attention. Use the sun The sun is a great source of free heat and should be the primary focus of temperature control in the home throughout the year. Goslett says that just by keeping curtains open during the day can bring a lot of heat into the home and the best part is that it doesn’t cost a cent. He notes that closing the curtains or blinds when the sun goes down will . . .
Purchasing an international property is an excellent way for investors to diversify their current property or investment portfolios, provided the necessary considerations are taken into account. This is according to James Bowling, CEO of Monarch&Co, a market leader in facilitating citizenship and foreign property investment. He notes many investors in today’s market are looking for ways to either diversify their specific property market exposure by disinvesting from their current country of residence and investing into different prime property destinations, or to diversify into property from equities and other similar asset classes to create a more balanced portfolio. “Another driving factor for many investors who want to purchase property overseas is the numerous benefits they may acquire from purchasing real estate through a residence or citizenship program, particularly in countries within the European Union (EU),” says Bowling. “There are a number of countries in the EU that welcome foreign property investment and are in fact encouraging it through the introduction of their citizenship and residency programmes. These citizenship and residency programmes have, in uncertain economic times, boosted the property markets of those countries through pushing up capital appreciation as well as strengthening the country’s economy - a mutually beneficial factor for both the country and the investor. Investors are also eligible, through many of these programmes, to enjoy the advantages of becoming an EU resident or citizen.” Bowling says that while there are several benefits to investing in an international property, there are a number of key considerations that an investor needs to ponder before taking the step forward. “The first thing to determine is what you want to achieve through the investment,” he says. “It’s important to have a sound objective with regard to the investment as this will largely determine which avenues to explore. Investors will need to . . .
Skateboarding enthusiasts can expect adrenaline-pumping action when the second Grand Slam of the Kimberley Diamond Cup heads for the Cresta Mall in Gauteng on Saturday, 28 June 2014. The event carries a prize purse of over R50 000, which is guaranteed to attract some of the country’s top individual and team skaters. The action kicks off at 10h30 with the qualifying rounds for the under 16s followed by the over 17 category and the Rider Cup team qualifiers. The first final rounds are due to start from 15h10 and the best trick jam at 17h10 is guaranteed to have the crowds on their feet as the skaters go for broke to land that one insane trick. In addition to the prize money, the Cresta Grand Slam will offer yet another talented street skateboarder a wild card entry into the Kimberley Diamond Cup world skateboarding championships in October this year. The four Grand Slam events together with the Kimberley Diamond Cup world skateboarding championship presented by Kumba Iron Ore are the five biggest skateboarding events in South Africa offering a total prize purse of nearly R6 million this year. One of the top street skaters, who will definitely be in action at the Cresta Grand Slam is 23-year-old Kanya Spani, who won a wild card at the Youth Day Skateboarding for Hope event in Soweto recently. “I was so stoked to get the wild card as that means I’ll get to compete in Kimberley again, which is an incredible experience. It was the best birthday gift ever and there was such a cool vibe in Soweto. The kids were so hyped to get up on skateboards for the very first time – it was really exciting to watch,” mentions Spani. Spani started skating about thirteen years ago in his home town of Port Elizabeth, when his neighbour allowed him to borrow his board. Since then he has moved to Johannesburg and it has become a full-time occupation, even though he is a qualified web developer. “Skateboarding becomes your life and I would definitely recommend it to youngsters. . . .
Whether buying a new home or renting one, everyone will experience moving homes at some stage of their lives. Moving yourself can be a physically daunting task and can also be expansive, so using professional movers could make a lot of sense. However, the challenge is determining which mover to use with so many to choose from. “Ideally the best way to select a mover is through a referral from a friend or family member who has used them before,” says Adrian Goslett, CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa. “This way you have a testimonial from someone that you trust that the mover does a good job. However, if there is no-one who can provide you with the details of a reliable service provider, there are factors to consider that will assist you to make the best choice and use the right mover to transfer all your possessions to your new home in one piece.” Goslett provides a few points for those looking to use a professional mover to consider: Research on the internet and public information Generally in today’s age of technology, a wealth of information is only a mouse click away. The majority of companies will have websites that list their services, service history, area they operate in and a rough estimate as to how much it will cost. The internet is a good place to start compiling a list of possible choices and getting background information on each. Another advantage of looking at websites is that they should provide contact information, which allows you to ask questions and obtain a written response. Beware of any companies who do not provide a local address or information about licensing or insurance. “The internet and online search engines such as Google are a great source of online testimonials. Social media also provides an excellent platform to gain information about a credible professional mover. This points back to finding a referral from someone who has already used a mover and been extremely happy with their service. The internet and social media . . .
Avcres Transport cc has become the latest signatory of the Chemical & Allied Industries’ Association (CAIA) Responsible Care (RC) initiative, thereby committing to implement the guiding principles of this initiative of the chemical industry. Louise Lindeque, Responsible Care Manager at CAIA said, “The safety, health, environmental and quality performance of logistics service providers that transport chemicals on behalf of the chemical industry has to be of a high standard to ensure that dangerous goods are transported safely, thereby protecting employee, public and environmental health. The implementation of RC has to be extended along the logistics chain and it is therefore important that logistics service providers such as Avcres Transport cc adopt and implement the RC Guiding Principles and Management Practices. This adds value to a company’s existing safety, health and environmental management systems.” Lindeque added, “Signing this commitment allows Avcres to join leading logistics companies who have elected to adhere to recognised industry standards and to promote the safe storage, handling and transport of chemicals.” Aveshen Naidoo, CEO of Avcres Transport cc, adds: “As a Responsible Care partner company, Avcres is committed to protecting the environment, to safely transport chemicals and to demonstrate a continuous improvement in safety, health and environmental performance. The interests of all stakeholders will be highly regarded — employees, customers and the communities in which Avcres and its carriers operate.” Avcres Transport cc was established in 1996 as a transport management and broker company, to service the distribution needs of various industries. The late Mr Yanks Naidoo, a long distance driver, had the vision of becoming a service provider in the logistics industry. This vision became a reality when Mr Naidoo purchased his first truck. He chose to name his company Avcres, which are the joint names of his two children, Aveshen and . . .