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Sustainability in property valuation: theory and practice

Sustainability in property valuation: theory and practice Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explain the rationale for integrating sustainability issues into property valuation theory and practice and to provide initial suggestions for valuers on how to account for sustainability issues within valuation reports. Design/methodology/approach – The authors emphasise the key role of valuation professionals and of the valuation process itself in achieving a broader market penetration of sustainable construction. It is explained that, on the one hand, property valuation represents the major mechanism to align economic return with environmental and social performance of property assets, and thus to express and communicate the advantages and benefits of sustainable buildings. On the other hand, it is explained that gradual changes in market participants' perceptions in favour of sustainable buildings must be reflected within the property valuation and associated risk assessment process (otherwise valuers would produce misleading price estimates). The authors identify both the financial benefits and risk reduction potential of sustainable design as well as valuation input parameters that would allow these benefits to be reflected in property price estimates. Findings – The authors show that the main reasons for immediately and rigorously integrating sustainability issues into property valuation are as follows: more sustainable patterns of behaviour are urgently necessary to sustain the viability of the Earth's ecosystems; a huge untapped market potential exists for sustainable property investment products and consulting services; sustainable buildings clearly outperform their conventional competitors in all relevant areas (i.e. environmentally, socially and financially); neglecting the benefits of sustainable design leads to distorted price estimates; and reflecting sustainability issues in property price estimates is already possible and the validity of this decision depends solely on the valuer's capability and sophistication to explain and justify his/her assumptions within the valuation report. However, it is also shown that efforts need to be undertaken to improve the description of property assets in transaction databases in order to provide the informational databases necessary to empirically underpin a valuer's decision to assign a “valuation bonus” to a sustainable building or a “valuation reduction” to an unsustainable/conventional one. Originality/value – The paper postulates that valuation reports should be extended to include the following additional elements: a clear description of the availability of certain sustainability‐related property characteristics and attributes; a statement of the valuer's opinion about the benefits of these characteristics and attributes; and a statement of the valuer's opinion about the impact of these benefits and/or risks on property value. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Property Investment & Finance Emerald Publishing

Sustainability in property valuation: theory and practice

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1463-578X
DOI
10.1108/14635780810908361
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explain the rationale for integrating sustainability issues into property valuation theory and practice and to provide initial suggestions for valuers on how to account for sustainability issues within valuation reports. Design/methodology/approach – The authors emphasise the key role of valuation professionals and of the valuation process itself in achieving a broader market penetration of sustainable construction. It is explained that, on the one hand, property valuation represents the major mechanism to align economic return with environmental and social performance of property assets, and thus to express and communicate the advantages and benefits of sustainable buildings. On the other hand, it is explained that gradual changes in market participants' perceptions in favour of sustainable buildings must be reflected within the property valuation and associated risk assessment process (otherwise valuers would produce misleading price estimates). The authors identify both the financial benefits and risk reduction potential of sustainable design as well as valuation input parameters that would allow these benefits to be reflected in property price estimates. Findings – The authors show that the main reasons for immediately and rigorously integrating sustainability issues into property valuation are as follows: more sustainable patterns of behaviour are urgently necessary to sustain the viability of the Earth's ecosystems; a huge untapped market potential exists for sustainable property investment products and consulting services; sustainable buildings clearly outperform their conventional competitors in all relevant areas (i.e. environmentally, socially and financially); neglecting the benefits of sustainable design leads to distorted price estimates; and reflecting sustainability issues in property price estimates is already possible and the validity of this decision depends solely on the valuer's capability and sophistication to explain and justify his/her assumptions within the valuation report. However, it is also shown that efforts need to be undertaken to improve the description of property assets in transaction databases in order to provide the informational databases necessary to empirically underpin a valuer's decision to assign a “valuation bonus” to a sustainable building or a “valuation reduction” to an unsustainable/conventional one. Originality/value – The paper postulates that valuation reports should be extended to include the following additional elements: a clear description of the availability of certain sustainability‐related property characteristics and attributes; a statement of the valuer's opinion about the benefits of these characteristics and attributes; and a statement of the valuer's opinion about the impact of these benefits and/or risks on property value.

Journal

Journal of Property Investment & FinanceEmerald Publishing

Published: Sep 26, 2008

Keywords: Sustainable design; Property; Asset valuation; Social responsibility

References

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