Below is a list of categories for entry, as well as strict criteria that the judging panel will use to determine nominees and winners in each:

CATEGORY 1: SAPOA Best Newcomer of the Year

The award goes to a journalist with three years or less experience who the judges believe to be already demonstrating great future potential as a journalist and making a significant contribution to property journalism in the future.

Entrants must submit a body of outstanding work (not more than three stories, including proof of publication/broadcast) together with a strong motivation showing commitment to the vocation of news well above the norm – this motivation is a critical component of the judging process. The work must be in the areas of real estate, be it commercial, residential, industrial or retail property.

CATEGORY 2: SAPOA Property News Journalist of the Year

  • Was the story relevant to the property industry?
  • Was the journalist first to break the news?
  • Did the story indicate that the journalist had an extremely deep knowledge and understanding of the issue or subject matter? Did he/she conduct sound and insightful analysis?
  • Is there strong evidence that in-depth research (that goes beyond just reporting) was conducted?
  • Did he/she consult a wide and balanced range of credible sources?
  • Are the facts in the story accurate and is this clear?
  • Has he/she brought unusual and innovative perspective and was an original, fresh and insightful angle presented on the story?

CATEGORY 3: SAPOA Property Feature Journalist of the Year

  • Was the story relevant to the property industry?
  • Is there strong evidence that in-depth accurate research was conducted?
  • Does the story show strong use of innovative descriptive writing and the ability to bring the subject matter to life, irrespective of its news value?

CATEGORY 4: SAPOA Property Publication of the Year (including digital publications)

  • Are the stories contained relevant to the property industry?
  • Does the publication edition have a well-developed clear focus and theme that runs throughout?
  • Did the writers succeed in presenting the various stories contained in an understandable, accessible way?
  • Did the writers display quality language use in terms of style, tone, grammar, sentence construction?
  • Did the journalists display a deep understanding of how to use the written word to communicate effectively with readers?
  • Was there a strong, compelling introduction to each story?
  • Are the stories well-organised and structured and the writing lively and engaging?

CATEGORY 5: SAPOA Property News Website of the Year (Websites only)

  • Is the website up to date?
  • Are the stories contained relevant to the property industry?
  • Do the stories indicate that the journalists had an extremely deep knowledge and understanding of the issue or subject matter? Did he/she conduct sound and insightful analysis and not just posting of press releases?
  • Did the journalist succeed in presenting the topic in an understandable, accessible way? Are the stories well organised and structured?
  • Has navigation between stories been made easy? Did the reporter make exceptional use of the mediums through innovative techniques?
  • Are readers able to share the content onto other multi-media platforms (links to share via e-mail or social media)?