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Cost of house and car valuations slashed

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Lightstone, a data provider to the South African property and vehicle industry, has announced that its Property and Vehicle Valuation reports used by business clients will be made available to all South Africans at a heavily reduced rate. Car valuations will cost R20, and property valuations R90.

“Many of us are concerned about job security, reduced income or, at worst, no income at all and will be asking: what is the ultimate impact on my longer-term financial position? The quick answer is, no one knows,” says Paul-Roux de Kock of Lightstone. “What we can control, however, is to take an informed and data driven approach to thinking about the future, and it is for this reason that we are offering our comprehensive property and vehicle valuation reports at a reduced rate –  providing South Africans with a more reliable means to evaluate their current financial standing.”

Now, more than ever, he saysm it is has become imperative to be able to evaluate detailed personal budgets; manage everyday spending; be able to easily analyse assets and their value and make informed decisions on whether to buy or sell, this is why Lightstone has taken the decision to launch this consumer facing analytics tool.

De Kock adds that consumers should contact their trusted estate agent and/or motor dealership in order to receive a more personalised view on what their assets might be worth when they are considering selling either after Lockdown. The Lightstone reports should be used as an additional source during monthly budget planning and will help determine and organise various scenarios that may play out in the future. Lightstone reports are recognised by businesses as credible sources of property and vehicle valuations and will provide consumers with a better view of their current financial position. Lightstone’s valuation models which are based on global best practice, are evaluated and updated by data scientists regularly, providing the most accurate and up to date measures as possible. 

Property Valuation Report

Consumers who are evaluating whether to buy or sell a property should use the Lightstone Property Valuation Report to assist them with determining a market related value of a property. The report includes the latest residential property datasets for all properties in South Africa.

Vehicle Valuation Report

Real-time vehicle valuations include data from over 240 000 retail vehicle transactions each year, combined with reliable third-party sources and a comprehensive database, gathered over the past three decades. The vehicle valuation report will guide consumers in the estimated value of both trade and retail values of their vehicle.

“Whether you’ve lost a reliable source of income or could use some financial guidance on how to get through these uncertain times, the key is to assess your current situation with the best information available and make decisions on how you respond according to that,” concludes de Kock.

Vehicle Reports

  • The Lightstone Valuation Report is recognised as a credible source for a Vehicle Valuation at a reduced cost of R20 (incl VAT).
  • These are estimated values for this vehicle with average mileage and average condition. Values are a guide and can differ based on geographical position, condition, supply and demand, as well as any other external factors that might influence the value of the vehicle.
  • There are retail and trade values that can be used, and listed below: 
    • Retail value used to estimate what a vehicle can be sold for in the market place, and an range of values are provided to showcase the vehicles Lightstone has seen sell in the market in the last couple of months.
    • Trade values indicate the potential trade-in value for a vehicle in the marketplace. Market factors like supply, demand, stock holding, geographical area, condition, mileage etc. can play a role in the final value offered.
  • The report further includes:
    • Generic features, the standard specifications and other identifiers, and
    • The last five recorded sales of this vehicle or a similar vehicle in the market.

Property Reports

Lightstone Valuation Report is recognised as an industry accepted source for property valuations and offered at a reduced cost of R90 (incl VAT).

  • The value included in the report is an automated value and it therefore doesn’t take into consideration recent changes in the features or physical attributes contained in a home i.e. marble floors, aluminium double-glazed windows and imported taps which may increase the value.
  • There are three methods of property valuation regularly used in the industry 
    • Automated value (an analytical model like Lightstone’s),
    • Desktop valuation; where an analyst electronically enters values – using online tools,
    • Physical valuation which is conducted by a valuer that visits the property.

A valuation report should be used to understand the price range that a home should be valued within.

AUTOMATED VALUATION MODEL

The Lightstone AVM (has been developed in line with global best practice) and refined over the last decade to cater for the specifics of the South African property market. As well as providing a market value prediction, Lightstone provides additional information to assist in business decisions i.e.:

  • Accuracy Score (confidence that the automated valuation is within 20% of what the property will sell for under standard market conditions),
  • Safety Score (confidence that the automated valuation is not over predicting by more than 10% in standard market conditions), and
  • Range (High / Low).

Both the model predictions and confidence scores (safety and accuracy) are back tested monthly and have been consistently improved using new statistical approaches and enhanced data supplies. The AVM methodology and performance is tested periodically by both Fitch and Moody’s. The Lightstone AVM is the only AVM in South Africa approved by both agencies for mortgage securitisation and is used by most banks in South Africa during the mortgage application and management process.

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