Property 24/10 - 326

Solar farming moving to SA shopping centre rooftops
Urban property developers have realised the potential of city rooftops for solar farming, with factories and shopping malls being transformed through the installation of acres of solar panels on previously underutilised roof space.

Greg Austin, MD of juwi Renewable Energies, the EPC provider to the projects says solar is moving into cities on an industrial scale.

“The Northern Cape is the centre of the solar industry in the country, but large-scale property owners in urban areas are realising the potential cost-saving in bringing solar farms closer to the area of demand and creating own-consumption solutions,” says Austin.

Urbanisation and the future of South African property
The property needs in South Africa are evolving as more and more people move into urban areas. In 1960, around 46.6% of the population lived in urban areas, however, that figure has changed dramatically with around two-thirds of the South African population now living in metropolitan hubs.

“According to a survey released by the South African Institute of Race Relations, the proportion of people living in urban areas increased from 52% in 1990 to 62% in 2011. The share of those living in rural areas dropped from 48% to 38% over the same period,” says Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa.

“Urban living surpassed rural living in South Africa in 2009. Currently, South Africa has a higher urbanisation rate than the world average, and it is expected to continue increasing at a rapid rate.”

New career map for facilities management professionals
A career map has been unveiled at the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) World Workplace Conference and Expo as a priority joint output of the landmark global collaboration with the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). By standardising training courses, qualification requirements and certification levels internationally, the scope and potential of a career in facilities management (FM) is greater than ever before.

“With the guidance and credibility of the first-ever career map for professional recognition in facilities management, the careers of professionals are expected to advance further and faster across multiple global markets, including South Africa and the rest of the African continent,” says TC Chetty, country manager for South Africa RICS.

'Double your property sales' IEASA course for agents
As part of an ongoing skills development programme, the Institute of Estate Agents of South Africa Western Cape (IEASA-WC) will be co-hosting a “Double your Property Sales” course in Cape Town with the Real Estate Investor Magazine on Friday, 21 October 2016.

Annette Evans, general manager of IEASA Western Cape, says tickets to this event have been reduced from R2 000 to R350 for IEASA members, and R550 for non-members.

“Don’t miss the opportunity to be educated and entertained by Neale Petersen, publisher, property guru and coach, who will guide and coach you to even greater results,” says Evans.

Sole or open mandate? Must-knows for sellers
Is it better to work with one estate agent or work with many? Many homeowners feel that if they sign a sole mandate with an agent they are reducing their chances of finding a buyer in the most optimum time frame and for the highest price.

“However, while homeowners may think they are limiting their chances by signing a sole mandate, the truth is that it will be far more beneficial to them than they think,” says Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa.

“Signing a mandate means that the homeowner is giving the real estate agent an exclusive contract to market and sell a specific property. It is then up to that agent to find the right buyer for the home, ideally achieving the highest possible price within the shortest time frame.”

What to know about buying vacant land
Investing in vacant land may have decreased in popularity in recent years, but high property prices and a competitive market could lead more buyers to reconsider this option in future.

“Buying a vacant plot, paying it off and then saving up to build used to be a great way for buyers to get a foot on the property ladder in an affordable way,” says Bill Rawson, Chairman of the Rawson Property Group.

“These days, however, building costs are much higher and there is less land available in popular suburbs, which means it’s more difficult to find opportunities with the same kind of potential for success.”

However, he says that’s not to say buying vacant land is a bad investment.

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