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Sustainability scoring tool for real estate according to German and European valuation principles in the purchasing process

Katharina Oktabec (Business Administration and Engineering - Real Estate, University of Applied Sciences Mittelhessen, Friedberg, Germany)
Nadine Wills (Business Administration and Engineering - Real Estate, University of Applied Sciences Mittelhessen, Friedberg, Germany)

Journal of Property Investment & Finance

ISSN: 1463-578X

Article publication date: 4 April 2024

107

Abstract

Purpose

Sustainability has become an integral part of the real estate industry, alongside advancing globalization and demographic development. Due to real estate's influence on greenhouse gas emissions throughout its life cycle, both the regulatory and legal requirements concerning the sustainability of real estate are growing and, as a result of social responsibility, the interest of tenants and investors in sustainable real estate. However, criteria for measuring the ecological sustainability of a real estate investment in the purchase process in order to reduce the risk of including “stranded assets” in the portfolio are missing. This paper aims to address the need to integrate the issue of carbon stranding into existing sustainability rating tools.

Design/methodology/approach

Existing tools are examined based on defined criteria to determine whether they are suitable for purchasing a property before suitable tools for purchase are compared. Strengths and weaknesses are identified, which are to be remedied with the scoring tool. Taxonomy regulation is integrated into the existing valuation basis as a legal regulation.

Findings

The result is a scoring tool that enables real estate companies to measure and evaluate the ecological sustainability performance of a property during the acquisition process, taking into account the three aspects of sustainability and considering them when determining an appropriate purchase price in line with market conditions. Moreover, the developed tool helps to minimize the risk of acquiring a stranding asset.

Research limitations/implications

The environmental, social and governance (ESG) framework employed in this study does not incorporate governance considerations. While the analysis extensively evaluates the building's environmental and social aspects, it does not extend to examining the governance practices of the companies involved. Thus, the assessment is confined solely to the physical attributes of the property without accounting for broader corporate governance factors.

Practical implications

The developed scoring tool represents a valuable tool for the real estate industry, offering insights into sustainability performance during property acquisitions and providing a structured framework for decision-making. By addressing both certification and taxonomy regulation requirements, the tool contributes to the industry's evolution toward more sustainable and environmentally responsible real estate practices.

Originality/value

In response to the growing importance of sustainability in the real estate industry, this paper introduces a novel scoring tool for evaluating the sustainability of real estate investments during the acquisition process.

Keywords

Citation

Oktabec, K. and Wills, N. (2024), "Sustainability scoring tool for real estate according to German and European valuation principles in the purchasing process", Journal of Property Investment & Finance, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JPIF-10-2023-0098

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2024, Emerald Publishing Limited

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