Sunday, 14 July 2024

In Property

Residential Solar Emerges as a Top Priority for Home Buyers in South Africa, [Pam Golding Properties Survey]

As South Africa grapples with ongoing loadshedding and soaring electricity tariffs, the demand for energy-saving features in residential properties has surged, according to a recent survey conducted by Pam Golding Properties, a leading national real estate agency.

The survey, which gathered responses from 384 agents, revealed that solar power is at the forefront of home buyers' preferences, garnering over a third (35.4%) of the votes.

Dr Andrew Golding, Chief Executive of the Pam Golding Property group, noted that the severity of loadshedding has unsurprisingly led to increased interest in "green" features among buyers. Following solar power, boreholes and JoJo tanks emerged as the second most sought-after green feature, emphasizing the persistent water scarcity issues across much of the country.

Dr Golding emphasized that sellers with alternative power and water storage options hold a significant advantage when buyers are comparing similar properties. Properties equipped with green features are selling faster, as buyers prioritize viewing these homes first, appreciating the convenience of having the necessary infrastructure already in place.

The survey findings also indicated that nearly a quarter of respondents stated that more than half of their home buyers specifically request solar and other green features when purchasing a property. This growing demand for sustainability solutions, such as solar power, has proven to be an important driver in determining the selling price of properties, with 68.8% of home buyers willing to pay a premium for homes equipped with green features.

The survey also shed light on the motivations of homeowners, with 55.2% of agents reporting that property owners are adding green features not only for personal benefits but also to enhance the marketability of their homes. While the monetary value of these features is challenging to quantify, the availability of backup power and water supply solutions undoubtedly increases the appeal and marketability of residential properties.

While achieving complete energy independence by going off the grid is the ultimate goal, the survey highlighted that affordability remains a key concern for many consumers, particularly first-time home buyers. Currently, homeowners are primarily focused on mitigating the impact of loadshedding, with water supply being a secondary concern for most.

In an encouraging development, some banks in South Africa are following international green financing trends by offering preferential loan terms, including lower interest rates, for green-certified home loans.

Dr Golding concluded that high-end buyers prioritize being as independent from the grid as possible, while buyers in the middle price range are satisfied if alternate energy solutions alleviate the impact of loadshedding for most of their needs. 

Undoubtedly, green features, including solar power, offer significant advantages to any home, attracting buyers and potentially increasing the property's value.

As loadshedding woes persist and electricity costs escalate, the Pam Golding Properties survey underscores the urgent need for homeowners and property developers to embrace solar power and other energy-saving initiatives.

With buyers increasingly valuing sustainability and willing to pay a premium, the adoption of residential solar solutions stands to benefit both homeowners and the environment, creating a win-win situation for all stakeholders in the South African real estate market.

Source: Pam Golding Property Group