News: 5 March 2018A “brown discount” opposed to a “green premium”

After a year of further integration with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), the draft NPPF looming and the upcoming changes to the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES), this year’s RICS annual Valuation Conference certainly didn’t fall short on hot topics.

Speakers and delegates from across the property industry, took the opportunity to explore what these changes could mean for the industry. Among the speakers was the RICS Chief Economist, Simon Rubinsohn, who told of a mixed macro-economic story. He evidenced his points about underlying confidence in the UK with the recent decision by Toyota to further invest in their Derby facility, but said investment was suffering from a number of uncertainties.

Our Associate, Oliver Dawson, commented: “Future productivity gains were identified as being key, and subsequent discussions around the adoption of new technologies highlighted opportunities for the industry, along with the evolving role of the Chartered Surveyor in effectively advising clients.”

April 2018 will see a new legal standard set for minimum energy efficiency for rented commercial buildings. The new legal standard brings threats and opportunities for landlords, freehold investors, developers and lenders. Sarah Sayce, Professor of Sustainable Real Estate at the University of Reading, highlighted that the MEES would represent a major challenge for valuers and their due diligence.

RICS guidance on the matter is due to be published shortly and an understanding of exemptions, alongside working closely with clients, is clearly going to be critical to managing associated risks.

Oliver added: “Evidence presented from the REvalue research project appears to support a “brown discount” as opposed to a “green premium”, and it will be interesting to see how this project is able to feed into decision making on energy efficiency initiatives on existing housing stock.

“Following publication of the RICS Valuation – Global Standards 2017 last year, now aligned with IFRS, the draft UK National Chapter, due to be published shortly after the draft NPPF, will outline the regulatory framework at a national level within which Registered Valuers are expected to operate.

“The degree to which emerging planning policy and RICS valuation standards are respectful of one another remains to be seen; the disciplines are, of course, undeniably intertwined.”



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