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RICS

RICS releases global best practice for measurement of land

In a significant move, the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has published what it calls a ‘pioneering’ draft guidance for the measurement of land.

Once adopted, RICS says the guidance will have far-reaching implications for development surveyors, planners, architects and government administrators around the world as the new standards become global best practice for the consistent calculation of land measurement and associated metrics.

Instigated by the RICS, the new guidance has been lead-authored by pre-eminent British chartered surveyor and town planner Jonathan Manns. Consultation on the draft Guidance Note on the “Measurement of Land for Planning and Development Purposes” runs until 17 September 2019, prior to formal adoption at the end of the year.

The draft Guidance provides clear definitions for those measurements which are widely used in the property and planning sectors, advocating consistency worldwide. The following five core definitions have been proposed to assist with the global measurement of land:

  • Land Area: This should be used to refer to the legal title area of land, and is of particular relevance to agents and lawyers as it is the legally demised area of land
  • Site Area: This should be used to refer to the area of land used for planning application purposes and is of importance to those involved in the development process as it is the area to which any permission for development relates
  • Net Development Area: This should be used to refer to the area from which financial value is directly derived, by virtue of either being income-producing or for sale, and is of relevance to development surveyors and valuers
  • Plot Ratio: This is the ratio of Gross External Area (GEA) of a building or buildings at each floor area, under the International Property Measurement Standards, to the site area, and is already used as a standard metric for planning and design in certain sectors and jurisdictions
  • Site Coverage: This is the ratio of the building footprint’s GEA to the site area at ground-floor level, and again is already a standard metric for planning and design in certain sectors and jurisdictions

Consultations to this guidance note are open until 23:59 on 17 September 2019.

Belfast top city for office investors

The Belfast office market is performing better for investors than the likes of Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow, Cardiff and London. 

A report produced by Ulster University and MSCI in collaboration with RICS commercial property firms, entitled The Northern Ireland Commercial Property Investment Review, benchmarked the Northern Ireland and Belfast market against UK and European markets. 

The report claims that commercial property in Northern Ireland posted a total return of 1.7 per cent in 2018, down eight per cent the year before, but points out that the income return of seven per cent for NI exceeded that recorded for other UK nations in 2018, with NI continuing to perform, with the Belfast office market seeing returns of 12.4 per cent, well above the UK average of six per cent and European average of eight per cent.

RICS Regional Manager, Susan Mason, said: “This is the only independent analysis of the Northern Ireland commercial property sector that benchmarks it against other regions and cities, so it is an extremely valuable report that will be of significant use to surveyors, investors, and others in the property sector.”

London’s high office space costs leading occupants to move South East…

800 450 Jack Wynn

According to the Annual Occupiers Survey 2016 conducted by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), the next five years will see South East-bound office occupiers expanding their portfolios at a faster pace compared to those in the capital.

Produced in association with Savills and EY, the survey found that 20 per cent of UK property decision-makers expect to increase the amount of office space they own or rent in the South East; in comparison to decreasing (seven per cent). In addition, a net balance of 13 per cent more respondents in the South East expect to increase rather than decrease their property portfolio – equating to almost double the seven per cent in London.

RICS director of UK commercial property professional group, Paul Bagust, said of the results: “Among those who expect to expand (41 per cent), more than half cited quality of facilities (57 per cent) as the key driver for selecting their office space. Proximity to transport links and amenities is the next most important (39 per cent), with a third (35 per cent) citing technology and digital connectivity.”

He continued: “The figures indicate those taking on more property are doing so to find better quality spaces, which are better managed, and are equipped to deliver greater value to business – helping with recruitment and contributing to the bottom line. Occupiers are undoubtedly getting smarter about understanding the value good, well-managed premises can deliver.”

Elsewhere, when asked about the importance of location and the quality of workplace premises impacting employee performance and satisfaction, the top five factors recorded in the survey are: pay and benefits (64 per cent); company culture and reputation (62 per cent); proximity to transport links and amenities (49 per cent); flexibility of working arrangements (43 per cent); and quality of premises and facilities (34 per cent).

IFMA and RICS collaborate in celebration of World FM Day…

Further to the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) collaboration — which was announced in April of this year — both parties have publicly continued to commend the approximate 25 million facilities management (FM) professionals around the world for the variety of fundamental roles they play.

Consistent with the ‘Empowering people for a productive world,’ theme of this year’s World FM Day (July 13), the collaboration was created to enable facilities management professionals to connect via a global network of education, research, best practices, events, and support.

Celebrations are expected to progress around the world until July 15.

To find out more about the collaboration, click here