The RICS is issiung an information paper next week which it said will be an 'important step towards embedding sustainability as a core consideration in the valuation process'.

It will issue the 'Information Paper on Sustainability and Commercial Property Valuation' next Tuesday.

The paper aims to heighten awareness and 'therefore valuers’ working knowledge of sustainability in order to further advance awareness of its potential to impact on the valuation process'.

The paper outlines ways in which sustainability can be defined; how a building’s Green credentials may be assessed and how such characteristics might be reflected within a valuation either quantitatively or qualitatively.

Sustainable characteristics which are highlighted in the paper include the build quality and life cycle, the type of building materials used, the health and human performance of a building, building services such as air-conditioning, energy efficiency, waste management as well as location and accessibility considerations and the impact of regulation, tax and financial incentives.

The paper encourages valuers to analyse comparable rental evidence in light of sustainability.

Issues identified for particular consideration include, requiring the valuer to reflect upon the potential impact of sustainability on rental growth prospects, how sustainability factors will accelerate or temper obsolescence rates, and the risks of weak credentials on tenant retention rates and the speed of re-letting.

RICS spokesperson Philip Parnell, chairman of the Valuation Sustainability Working Group, said: 'The valuer has a clear responsibility to ensure that a valuation reflects all material factors that may influence value. Sustainability is one of the factors that is rapidly gaining in importance.

'Markets appear to be moving towards a requirement for greater recognition of sustainability issues, with the evidence suggesting that buildings that fall short of the prevailing market expectations will be increasingly at risk of accelerated obsolescence.

'Accordingly, it is becoming more and more important that the valuer is conversant with the issues and can reflect them in the advice given. Hence the need for clear guidance from RICS'

The Valuation Information Paper will be followed by formal guidance which will be included in the Red Book when it is next reprinted in January 2010.

The RICS said the issuing of this paper is part of RICS’ wider commitment to pursuing the objectives of the Vancouver Valuation Accord, signed in 2007.