In a change that is long overdue for key stakeholders in the real estate industry, the Stamp Duty (Valuation of Immovable Property) Regulations 2020 (the Regulations) now give property buyers the option of hiring an approved private valuer to conduct property government valuations in real estate transactions.
This new development brings with it several advantages, namely:
- increasing the number of valuers who can assist in valuation processes nationally;
- decreasing the backlog on civil servants to process valuation of stamp duty;
- creating employment opportunities for private valuation firms;
- reducing the timelines to complete the transfer of immovable property; and
- improving the efficiency of the valuation process since property buyers may proceed privately, which is faster since the private valuer must submit the valuation report to the Chief Government Valuer immediately on the buyer making the payment, whilst a Government Valuer has 21 days from the date of application.
Whilst it is still too early to tell, the Regulations, if implemented, will be a welcome change to the real estate industry.
In our next alert, we shall discuss the Regulations more substantively, along with the remaining recently-enacted land regulations.