Developing a repeat sales property price index for residential properties in South Africa
In South Africa various financial institutions and independent vendors have developed residential property valuation models to estimate the current value of historically traded properties. A natural extension to these models has been to develop historical property price indices. In this dissertation, three of the four approaches to developing property price indices will be examined. Through back–testing and other statistical methods, the most accurate and robust approach will be determined. The four major approaches available are the mean valuation per suburb, the median valuation per suburb, the repeat sales approach and hedonic regression. The mean valuation per suburb approach can be biased because of outliers in property prices. However, outliers in property prices will not influence the median valuation per suburb approach, but in cases where property values in a suburb have a skewed distribution, the valuation amount could be distorted. Neither of the above mentioned shortcomings influences the repeat sales or the hedonic regression approach. To follow the hedonic regression approach, the characteristics of the property need to be known. In South Africa, however, the available property data lacks detailed characteristics of traded properties. This dissertation will therefore focus on the first three methods. The repeat sales approach measures the growth in property prices by applying a generalized linear model to properties that have traded more than once. This approach is only possible if there is a representative amount of repeat sales able to fit a model. The focus of this project will be on the repeat sales approach, but all three the approaches discussed will be analysed to prove that the repeat sales approach is the most accurate in developing a property price index for properties in South Africa.
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