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Mini budget key to property market’s growth
South Africa - Property360
Despite lower interest rates and more willingness from banks to grant mortgage loans, a tough year is expected

Annual house price growth is forecast to be 3.7% in 2020, a figure below the predicted inflation rate of 4.3%. House prices will be mainly weighed on by tepid disposable income growth, as well as low sentiment levels, states FNB’s latest property barometer for the last quarter of 2019.

“Marginal support”, however, will come from lower interest rates as well as the ongoing adjustment in supply of new build stock. There is the possibility of one more 25bps rate cut by the Reserve Bank which should assist consumers’ discretionary income, albeit only slightly.

Generally, FNB property economist Siphamandla Mkhwanazi says South Africa’s economic growth is expected to remain “muted” this year, weighed on by the weak fiscal position, weak labour markets impacting negatively on income growth and therefore consumers’ spending power, as well as fragile business confidence.
Property360

The rise of electronic transactions
Australia - Mondaq
Electronic transactions remain relatively novel and some institutions and law firms still refuse to accept electronic transactions.

In day-to-day practice it is better to profit from the mistakes of others. The cutting edge of legal theory can be an uncomfortable place. Until the various issues are clarified by clear and authoritative court decisions and legislation, discretion is the better part of valour. All organisations should have an electronic signing and transactions policy giving clear guidance to when the organisation will permit the use of electronic signatures and transactions.
Mondaq

Commercial Property Insights
South Africa - FNB
2020 Commercial Property Outlook – It doesn’t get easier… as we wait for positive “structural economic reforms”

Outlook – Ongoing gradual real property value decline
FNB pins its hopes on some mild global economic “stabilization”, and we have also had some very small interest rate cut stimulus domestically. This leads to a very small lift in the forecast domestic GDP growth rate in 2020, from an estimated 0.3% for 2019 to 0.9%, but this remains a weak rate, still below 1%.

Despite this forecast of slight strengthening, we don’t believe it realistic to expect such economic growth to be sufficient to drive demand for commercial property space to a level where vacancy rates can stabilize or start to decline yet, nor do we believe that recent real property value levels can be sustained.

The average All Property Vacancy Rate of MSCI has been rising since the multi-year low of 5.2% reached in 2014, to reach 6.9% by 2018. 2014 was the year where GDP growth dropped to below 2% (recording 1.8%) for the 1st time since the 2009 contraction, and a further slowing to 1.2% in 2015 appeared to be the catalyst for the start of a rising vacancy rate trend.
FNB Commercial Property Insights

How digitisation will change conveyancing – for the better
UK - Estate Agent Today
In the field of conveyancing, there’s a new dynamic at play. And that dynamic is customer-driven and customer-focused, using digital technology to improve and enhance the conveyancing process. This is e-conveyancing, and many legal firms are embracing the latest technology to deliver better, more affordable client services.

The end result of e-conveyancing will be a fully digitised process from start to finish for property transactions. So, how far are we on the road to full digitisation, and what will this mean for conveyancing law firms and the wider property industry, including estate agents?

Services on demand
In the 21st century economy, many traditional business models are being replaced by on-demand services that offer instant empowerment to users. Apps put a customer in touch and in control.

Often referred to as ‘Uberisation’, on-demand means that customers want the same services faster and cheaper – and all delivered with the click of a button from their mobile device. For obvious reasons, the idea of on-demand presents a problem when buying and selling property.
Estate Agent Today

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