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America’s 30 hottest real estate markets, where houses sell in less than two months – at prices above local home values

U.S. real estate markets are strong right now, but a handful of cities are on fire, with rapidly rising home prices and short sale windows.

A new report by GoBankingRates ranks America’s 30 hottest housing markets by the average number of days a home stays on the market, based on Zillow data from 2017 and 2018.

Researchers said that rising home prices tend to reflect shifting dynamics in a city – often signalling growing employment, rising wages or other factors. However some markets can get ‘overheated’ – when list prices significantly exceed median home values.

A cluster (eight) of those super-hot markets are in California, and many more are in the American West and Southwest.

This map illustrates the top 15 hottest housing markets in America - cities where homes are purchased in less than two months, on average

Sunnyvale, California had the hottest market in America, with the average home selling in 38 days and a median list price of $1.5 million – the highest of any market on the list. The Silicon Valley community has seen home prices soar 23.7 percent in two years.

San Jose, California ranked second, with homes sitting on the market a short 42 days, on average. The median list price for homes in the Bay Area community is $929,000, with home prices rising 24.7 percent since the beginning of 2017.

Fremont, California – nestled between Silicon Valley and San Francisco – has a 43 day average window for houses to sit on the market before selling. The median listing price is just over $1 million.

San Francisco follows, also with a 43 day window on sales. The city is one of three on the list with a median home price above $1 million ($1.2 million).

Oakland, California, ranked fifth on the list, with median list prices of $650,000 on homes that sell in an average of 44 days.

Seattle is the first city outside of California on the list. Homes there sell in an average of 44 days and the median list price is $678,265.

Newark, New Jersey comes in seventh on the list, with a 45-day average window before a home is sold in that market. The median list price in Newark is $249,450 – and home values have risen 53 percent over two years, likely due to the city’s proximity to New York City.

Boise, Idaho ranked eight on the list, with a 47-day window for homes to sell. The median list price is $330,000 – highly affordable compared to most other cities on the list. Prices in Boise are up 32.8 percent over the past two years.

Arlington, Texas followed, in ninth place, with a median list price of $249,900 – up 21.9 percent compared to two years ago. Homes there sit on the market for an average of 47 days.

Colorado Springs, Colorado rounds out the top 10, with homes typically staying on the market 48 days before selling, and a median list price of $319,000. Prices are nearly 50 percent lower in Colorado Springs than in nearby Denver, which could be driving the market’s growth.

Aurora, Colorado ranked eleventh on the list, with a median listing price of $359,450. Homes are on the market for an average 48 days before selling.

Denver follows, with a median list price of $469,000 and an average 50-day window before homes are sold.

Mesa, Arizona ranked thirteenth, with a median list price of $260,000. Homes typically sell in 51 days in this Phoenix suburb.

Gilbert, Arizon, also outside of Phoenix, came in fourteenth, with a $340,000 median list price. Homes sit on the market an average 51 days in this city.

Rounding out the top 15 was Raleigh, North Carolina, a city where list prices (with a median of $330,000) are more than 21 percent above the current median home value of $271,700.

This table shows the ranking of America's hottest real estate markets, based on the duration homes stay on the market (on average) and recent rices in listing prices

 

Source: DailyMail

No Tomorrow’ for Many Unless Consumption Falls – UN

Nairobi — Global exploitation of natural resources – from water, sand and timber to oil, coal and gemstones – has more than tripled in 50 years, the United Nations said on Tuesday, warning of devastating environmental impacts unless demand is reduced.

Surging consumption of natural resources – 92 billion tonnes in 2017 – accounts for half of the world’s planet-heating greenhouse gas emissions and over 90 percent of the world’s biodiversity loss, the Global Resources Outlook 2019 found.

If resource use doubles by 2060, as predicted based on current trends, a further 10 percent of forests and 20 percent of habitats, such as grasslands, will disappear, it said.

“The Global Resources Outlook shows that we are ploughing through this planet’s finite resources as if there is no tomorrow, causing climate change and biodiversity loss along the way,” said Joyce Msyua, acting head of UN Environment.

“Frankly, there will be no tomorrow for many people unless we stop,” said Mysua of the agency formerly known as the U.N. Environment Programme (UNEP).

The findings were released at the U.N. Environment Assembly, a five-day summit where ministers plan to commit to create a more sustainable planet – from reducing food waste and plastic pollution to developing technologies to combat climate change.

Experts said they were surprised by the heavy contribution resource extraction was making to climate change and warned that carbon emissions could increase by about 40 percent by 2060 if the business-as-usual scenario continued.

Without more responsible, efficient natural resource management, they said, achieving global targets on climate change like the Paris Agreement and or Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on protecting biodiversity would be difficult.

The Paris climate agreement, adopted by almost 200 nations in 2015, set a goal of limiting warming to “well below” a rise of 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times.

“These are tremendously high numbers,” said Stefanie Hellwerg, one author of the report by the U.N.’s International Resource Panel, which monitors global natural resource flows.

“It shows us that commitments such as the Paris Agreement or the SDGs on biodiversity, will be very challenging to meet. We need action immediately.”

Experts called for increased regulation on resource extraction and more investment to develop alternatives.

“We need to develop innovative solutions on how to make the same products with less natural resources or through replacing them with different materials,” said Bruno Oberle, one of the report’s authors.

Source: AllAfrica

Buhari appoints two Executive Directors for NSIA

President Buhari has appointed two Executive Directors for the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, NSIA to help it further push its developmental roles in the economy.

Stella Ojekwe-Onyejeli who also doubles as the Chief Operating officer of NSIA is being reappointed as Executive Director for a second term and Aminu Umar-Sadiq, the Authority’s Deputy Head of Direct Investments, has been appointed, for the first time to the NSIA Board.

The appointments follow the realignment in 2018 of NSIA’s strategy with a pivot towards domestic infrastructure, as reflected in the allocation of 50 percent of future contributions to infrastructure investments.

“These appointments strengthen the Authority’s executive team and are consistent with our focus on maintaining a broadly representative leadership team and workforce so as to ensure that the institution remains a key participant in Nigeria’s economic transformation.” Jide Zeitlin, Chairman, NSIA Board of Directors said in a mailed statement.

“Both appointees are committed professionals who, along with other talented colleagues, have been instrumental in NSIA’s development.”

In 2018, the NSIA Board established for the first time a Direct Investment Committee for review and oversight of investments in core domestic infrastructure sectors such as motorways, agriculture, healthcare, power, and education.

Recent NSIA initiatives that reflect this increased focus on domestic infrastructure include the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF) which will fast-track the completion of five infrastructure projects of national priority, namely: Abuja-Kano Roadway, Second Niger Bridge, East-West Roadway, Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, and Mambilla Hydroelectric Power Plant.

NSIA is also galvanizing investments in tertiary healthcare and has invested in the development of the LUTH Cancer Treatment Centre while developing advanced diagnostic centres in AKTH, Kano and FMCU, Umuahia. The NSIA also co-sponsored the establishment of InfraCredit, a specialized financial guarantor that facilitates the financing of domestic infrastructure assets by domestic pension funds.

Ojekwe-Onyejeli was first appointed an Executive Director in October 2012 and served as the Chief Risk Officer until 2017 when her role was expanded to that of Chief Operating Officer. She has a wealth of experience spanning nearly three decades.

Joinng the Authority from Barclays where she was Director and Head of Operational Risk and Control at the Bank, overseeing 15 countries across Africa, Middle East and Asia. Ojekwe-Onyejeli held senior roles at Citibank prior to Barclays,

She received a degree in Chemistry from the University of Lagos, and an MBA from Cranfield School of Management in the UK.

She is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria and also a qualified Chartered Financial and Tax Accountant and also an Alumna of both the Oxford and Wharton Executive Management Programs and has attended many director-level programmes in leading institutions globally.

Umar-Sadiq has significant experience in investment banking, private equity and public finance, including his most recent role at the NSIA where he served as a Senior Vice-President and Deputy Head, Infrastructure.

Since joining NSIA, Umar-Sadiq has led the development, execution and management of critical domestic infrastructure projects in the agriculture, healthcare, roads, real-estate and power sectors. Prior to joining the NSIA, he worked in mergers and acquisitions at Morgan Stanley focused on the Energy and Utilities sectors.

He also worked with Denham Capital Management, an oil and gas, mining, and power focused private-equity fund. A Bauchi-State academic scholar, Aminu holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Engineering Sciences from the University of Oxford.

Umar-Sadiq is an Archbishop Desmond Tutu Fellow, a Nigeria Leadership Initiative Associate and a Mandela Washington Fellow.

Speaking on behalf of both appointees, Ojekwe-Onyejeli said, “We are honored to be appointed and look forward to continuing our work with the Board, Governing Council and employees in helping to lead the execution of NSIA’s strategy.”

Source: Business Day

Woman Loses 5 Kids In Lagos School Building Collapse

Rescue operations have been going on at the scene of the incident as sympathizers throng the site in Ita-Faji, Lagos Island. Now, a new report, albeit not confirmed, has shown that a woman has lost five children in the incident. This claim was made on Twitter by one Dr. Olufunmilayo who is quite popular on the platform.

According to this Twitter user, a woman lost 5 children in the school building that collapsed in Ita-Faji, Lagos Island earlier today.

Over 100 pupils were said to be in the building when it collapsed. The cause of the collapse is still unknown. Efforts are still ongoing to rescue as many students alive as possible.

Ban Ki-Moon tells RE sector to “take the lead in reducing greenhouse gas emissions” – MIPIM Wrap day 1

Ban Ki-moon, 8th Secretary General of the UN, opened MIPIM’s 30th edition today with an inspiring keynote speech, in which he encouraged real estate leaders to further sustainability and fight climate change.

“Our world is going through pronounced changes resulting in elevated uncertainties & new risks,” he said. “Human rights are no longer respected, threatening the rules-based order based on human decency and mutual respect.”

As such, he stressed, it is crucial to focus on three key topics: “Resilient & sustainable cities,” which he sees as key to our future; climate change, “the most pressing threat standing in this path; and how “the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) can help us chart a thriving blueprint for the future.”

“It is not enough for cities to be ‘smart’ if they only cater to affluent professionals, or young people, or those who are able-bodied. Future cities must be underpinned by inclusivity for all,” he insisted.

“Policy-makers & other key stakeholders like you should use the (UN’s) 2030 Agenda & its Sustainable Development Goals; the Paris Climate Agreement; the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction; and the New Urban Agenda to anchor future cities with sustainability.”

On climate change, Ban Ki-moon told the real estate sector to “take the lead in reducing greenhouse gas emissions in your properties and industry…

Ensure that all commercial and residential properties have sustainability certification. Integrate climate-risk considerations into your investment decisions.”

Despite these challenges, Ban Ki-moon concluded on an optimistic note. “As long as we keep moving forward in a responsible and sustainable manner while continuing to build dynamic and innovative partnerships, there is simply no limit as to what we can achieve. Our global challenges require robust global solidarity.”

A session called Investing in the UK kicked off proceedings at MIPIM 2019. Despite Bexit, the panel – which featured Mike Slaughter of the Department for International Trade; Helen Gordon of Grainger; Mark Rose of Avison Young and Simon Murphy of Battersea Power Station SDC – was bullish about Great Britain’s attractiveness to investors.

“Grainger’s been investing for 107 years, and even in these uncertain times, we’ve seen unprecedented investment in real estate,” said Gordon.

We (the UK) have this huge wealth of sitting on a small island. It’s a constrained market, and that leads to quality.”

“The UK is the fifth largest economy in the world. So you have to trade with it,“ said Rose. “And yet you read every day about the death of one of the greatest places in the world. Because we’ve put assets on sale for reasons that are entirely political for now.”

Another panel looked at Post-Brexit Investment Strategies (above). “Uncertainty is the new normal, but London’s fundamentals are strong,” said Catherine McGuinness, Policy Chair at City of London Corporation.

“Unprecedented numbers of tech companies are coming in and there’s tremendous energy in creative sectors. We may see some services leave, but London will remain the financial centre.”

“We are a large investor in Europe and have luxury to allocate investment across it”, said Mahdi Mokrane, La Salle IM. “We told our clients we don’t know what’s going to happen with Brexit, but we see resilience in the market in UK and London in particular.”

“Brexit means we have to work that little bit harder and understand what we’re good at – in Scotland that means education, producing and designing things, being the centre of data and infrastructure, and doing what we can to mitigate the negatives,” said Derek Mackay, Member of the Scottish Parliament for Renfrewshire North & West.

The discussion will be continued this Thursday at the highly anticipated session ‘Future Of Real Estate Investment In The UK In The Context Of Brexit‘. MIPIM is proud to welcome Alun Cairns MP, UK Government cabinet member and Secretary of State for Wales, to its 2019 programme.

He will be joined by Sir Edward Lister, Chairman of Homes England. Join us at 16.00 this Thursday in the Ruby Room.

Tech was also in the spotlight today at MIPIM, with a Smart Cities: Empowering Smart Citizens panel uniting Stefan Gruber of Schindler Group; Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol; & David Martinez, of Barcelona’s 22@innovation district.

“A smart city is not a thing, it’s an ability,” said Martinez. “There’s the physical context and then the civitas, the society. Smart cities should be between these two, so use technology to make the city more sustainable. It really is about smart citizens.”

“70% of world’s population will live in cities in near future,” said Gruber. “Pollution, security and mobility are just a few issues they have to face. It’s even more important that we improve quality of life for citizens.”

“We’ve got 25% of children in Bristol in poverty,” said Rees. “So how do we make sure all the accolades around smart cities are not just Phds entertaining themselves? How are we not compounding poverty and frustrating people, who end up voting for Brexit?

There’s a a toxicity that’s developed in political discourse. So how do you make sure we don’t lose the ability to disagree well? I’m a fan (of smart cities), but their opportunity could be turned into a liability if we don’t ask the right questions.”

Ban Ki-moon, 8th Secretary General of the UN, opened MIPIM’s 30th edition today with an inspiring keynote speech, in which he encouraged real estate leaders to further sustainability and fight climate change.

“Our world is going through pronounced changes resulting in elevated uncertainties & new risks,” he said. “Human rights are no longer respected, threatening the rules-based order based on human decency and mutual respect.”

As such, he stressed, it is crucial to focus on three key topics: “Resilient & sustainable cities,” which he sees as key to our future; climate change, “the most pressing threat standing in this path; and how “the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) can help us chart a thriving blueprint for the future.”

“It is not enough for cities to be ‘smart’ if they only cater to affluent professionals, or young people, or those who are able-bodied. Future cities must be underpinned by inclusivity for all,” he insisted.

“Policy-makers & other key stakeholders like you should use the (UN’s) 2030 Agenda & its Sustainable Development Goals; the Paris Climate Agreement; the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction; and the New Urban Agenda to anchor future cities with sustainability.”

On climate change, Ban Ki-moon told the real estate sector to “take the lead in reducing greenhouse gas emissions in your properties and industry… Ensure that all commercial and residential properties have sustainability certification. Integrate climate-risk considerations into your investment decisions.”

Despite these challenges, Ban Ki-moon concluded on an optimistic note. “As long as we keep moving forward in a responsible and sustainable manner while continuing to build dynamic and innovative partnerships, there is simply no limit as to what we can achieve. Our global challenges require robust global solidarity.”

A session called Investing in the UK kicked off proceedings at MIPIM 2019. Despite Bexit, the panel – which featured Mike Slaughter of the Department for International Trade;

Helen Gordon of Grainger; Mark Rose of Avison Young and Simon Murphy of Battersea Power Station SDC – was bullish about Great Britain’s attractiveness to investors. “Grainger’s been investing for 107 years, and even in these uncertain times, we’ve seen unprecedented investment in real estate,” said Gordon.

We (the UK) have this huge wealth of sitting on a small island. It’s a constrained market, and that leads to quality.”

“The UK is the fifth largest economy in the world. So you have to trade with it,“ said Rose. “And yet you read every day about the death of one of the greatest places in the world. Because we’ve put assets on sale for reasons that are entirely political for now.”

Another panel looked at Post-Brexit Investment Strategies (above). “Uncertainty is the new normal, but London’s fundamentals are strong,” said Catherine McGuinness, Policy Chair at City of London Corporation. “Unprecedented numbers of tech companies are coming in and there’s tremendous energy in creative sectors.

We may see some services leave, but London will remain the financial centre.”

“We are a large investor in Europe and have luxury to allocate investment across it”, said Mahdi Mokrane, La Salle IM. “We told our clients we don’t know what’s going to happen with Brexit, but we see resilience in the market in UK and London in particular.”

“Brexit means we have to work that little bit harder and understand what we’re good at – in Scotland that means education, producing and designing things, being the centre of data and infrastructure, and doing what we can to mitigate the negatives,” said Derek Mackay, Member of the Scottish Parliament for Renfrewshire North & West.

The discussion will be continued this Thursday at the highly anticipated session ‘Future Of Real Estate Investment In The UK In The Context Of Brexit‘. MIPIM is proud to welcome Alun Cairns MP, UK Government cabinet member and Secretary of State for Wales, to its 2019 programme.

He will be joined by Sir Edward Lister, Chairman of Homes England. Join us at 16.00 this Thursday in the Ruby Room.

Tech was also in the spotlight today at MIPIM, with a Smart Cities: Empowering Smart Citizens panel uniting Stefan Gruber of Schindler Group; Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol; & David Martinez, of Barcelona’s 22@innovation district. “A smart city is not a thing, it’s an ability,” said Martinez.

“There’s the physical context and then the civitas, the society. Smart cities should be between these two, so use technology to make the city more sustainable. It really is about smart citizens.”

“70% of world’s population will live in cities in near future,” said Gruber. “Pollution, security and mobility are just a few issues they have to face. It’s even more important that we improve quality of life for citizens.”

“We’ve got 25% of children in Bristol in poverty,” said Rees. “So how do we make sure all the accolades around smart cities are not just Phds entertaining themselves?

How are we not compounding poverty and frustrating people, who end up voting for Brexit? There’s a a toxicity that’s developed in political discourse.]

So how do you make sure we don’t lose the ability to disagree well? I’m a fan (of smart cities), but their opportunity could be turned into a liability if we don’t ask the right questions.”

At the “Thinkers and Leaders Driving Change” panel, with Granit Gjonbalaj of WeWork, Judy Marks of Otis, Rob Towne of Microsoft and Chris Marlin of Lennar, Michael Sullivan of Schneider Electric summed up real estate’s current digital conundrum quite succinctly: “No one building buildings today was born digitally.”

Rob Towne of Microsoft also spoke on a Seattle-focused panel later in the day. “Microsoft built a region and the region built Microsoft,” said the company’s Real Estate and Facilities Director.

Diversity is key to this strength, said A-P Hurd, president of SkipStone: “You get the most value out of conversations between people who are the most different.”

“The Seattle region has been the fastest growing region in the United States since 2010, with growth doubling the national average for the past seven years.

Seattle was the third most productive economy in the United States,” said Brian McGowan, Greater Seattle Partners.

Not surprising, then, that it’s also the home to Amazon, Boeing, and Costco. “Each of these companies has added to the entrepreneurial cultural in the Seattle region,” said Steve Franks, CEO of Washington Realtors.

Source: Global Real Estate Experts.

Abuja Land Scandal: Buhari’s Minister Awards Choice Plots Of Land To Saraki, Abba Kyari, Amaechi, APC Leaders And Cabinet Members

Mohammed Musa Bello, Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), has signed off choice land plots in massive scale for himself and leaders of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) in a manner that underscores a worsening pang of corruption in public space.

The beneficiaries of this massive round of land allocations include APC National Leader, Bola Tinubu, and his wife, Senator Remi Tinubu, both of whom used proxy names.

The land largesse has carefully been carved up among the proverbial fat cats of the presidential seat of power in Abuja.

The Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari; former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Babachir Lawal, who currently faces trial for sundry corrupt enrichment; current SGF, Boss Mustapha; former Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS), Lawan Daura; Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi; Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika are among prominent names whose allocations’ right of occupancy (R of O) have been delivered.

The Minister personally took care of himself, members of the federal cabinet, principal officers of the two chambers of the legislature and many of President Muhammadu Buhari’s aides with two choice allocations of 6,000 square metres each.

Separate choice plots in Maitama and Guzape districts were received by each beneficiary. Other beneficiaries of the land allocation largesse with only a plot each are non-principal officers of the National Assembly and fringe aides within the Presidency.

Several of the beneficiaries in this land bazaar orchestrated by the Minister have previously benefited from government allocations in the FCT under different official positions.

For instance, as Tinubu, Saraki and Amaechi were recipients of choice land allocations in Abuja whilst seating as governors and chairmen of the Governors Forum respectively.

Following his appointment as FCT Minister, Bello had promised to address all land racketeering in Abuja. He proceeded to inaugurate two committees to address the public petitions.

The committees pored through case files, invited individuals involved and finally made recommendations. However, as it shows, Bello’s interests had switched to more pecuniary matters. Not a single recommendation of the committees has attracted his attention.

Contrary to what is on ground, the Minister recently claimed that his administration had resolved 500 lingering land racketeering cases. Our sources assert that he has not attended to any.

Furthermore, none of the requests by organised official groups from Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) for allocation of land for low and medium-income estates to address peculiar housing challenges has received his attention.

For staffers of the FCT, Bello has been a particularly indolent Minister with established cases of sitting on budgetary appropriations for utilities in the FCT wand continued instances of elapsed budgetary provisions repeatedly returned to the treasury.

Source: Sahara Reporters

New housing bill threatens Nigeria’s financial sector, economy

Ten percent of the profit before tax of Nigerian banks, insurance companies and pension fund administrators could go into a National Housing Fund promoted by lawmakers, according to an exclusive document seen by BusinessDay.

The so-called National Housing Fund (Establishment) Act, 2018 was secretly passed by the Senate on November 6, 2018, following its passage by the House of Representatives on July 17, 2018.

An approval by the presidency is all that stands in the way of the secret Act, which managed to elude private sector lobby groups, from becoming law, after it quietly made it through the National Assembly in 2018.

“When you put such a financial strain on private companies, they are forced to cut costs by sacking staff and freezing new investments,” a senior business person who did not want to be named said.

“This regulation will be poorly timed as it is happening when other countries are lowering corporate tax rates to incentivise investments,” the person said.

The levy will probably see some of the companies pass on the cost to consumers, thereby triggering a surge in inflation.

A race to cut spiralling operation costs created by the new levy could also force companies to lay off staff while barricading new investments in the economy.

That would be a tough blow to take on an economy still recovering from a contraction in 2016.

“Buhari has a chance to be the hero here if he refuses to assent to the Bill, but given his welfarist ideology, that may not happen,” a company CEO said on condition of anonymity.

The Act repeals the National Housing Fund Act Cap. N45, Laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2004 to provide for additional sources of funding for effective financing of housing development in Nigeria and was sponsored by Ahmad Kaita (APC, Katsina North).

The Act provides among others for every commercial or merchant bank, insurance company, and Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) to invest 10 percent of its profit before tax (PBT) into the Fund at an interest rate of 1 percent above the interest rate payable on current accounts of banks.

The Fund will also forcibly collect contributions from Nigerians, both in the public and private sectors, manufacturers and importers.

The Federal Government is to contribute to the Fund at its discretion.

Employees and self-employed Nigerians, who earn above the minimum wage, must contribute 2.5 percent of their monthly salaries to the Fund. Manufacturers and importers are also to contribute 2.5 percent to the Fund.

There’s also a levy on locally-produced and imported cement, which will be 2.5 percent ex-factory price before transportation cost for each bag of 50 kilogramme or its equivalent in bulk.

In the end, this levy may not be restricted to cement alone, as the Act provides that the President, by an executive order, could add, delete, amend or substitute consumer goods, services or products and approve rates for the levy as and when he thinks fit in the circumstance.

The Federal Mortgage Bank will manage the pooled funds, Section 15 (1) of the Act provides.
“The proceeds from the fund will be used to finance the housing sector of the economy through wholesale mortgage lending to primary mortgage banks,” section 15 (2) of the Act reads.

The failings of the former National Housing Fund and the track record of similar funds managed by government cast a cloud over how efficiently the new Fund will be managed and the chances that it achieves the primary objective for which it was created.

Industry players, who are worried that the provisions of the Bill overrule carefully-crafted regulatory guidelines that guarantee the safety of depositors’ funds sitting in the banks and pension funds, were critical of the Act and warned it would have dire consequences on the economy and investor confidence.

Boniface Okezie, national coordinator, Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria (PSAN), calls the Act a “fraud”.

“How can we be talking about extorting companies to fund something without seeking their consent,” Okezie said.

“This is unacceptable. Companies should not comply; rather they should rely on the provision of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA),” Okezie added. There are severe punishments for defaulters.

In the event that a company fails to pay the levy 60 days after it was due, it warrants a demand notice to be accompanied by a penalty of an additional 2 percent levy on the 10 percent that should have been paid.

If payment drags for another 60 days after the demand notice, the company pays a flat rate of N100 million and the CEO of the company risks spending three years in jail in addition to a personal fine, separate from the company fine, of N10 million.

In the case of importers, a two-month delay is all that is required before the importer is slammed with a N100 million fine, which the Bill says is the minimum.

A fine of N10 million could be slapped on individuals who fail to make their contributions as and when due.

The banks are expected to pay the levy to the Central Bank while the insurance companies and pension funds will pay to the National Insurance Commission and National Pension Commission, respectively.

For manufacturers and importers, the levy will be collected by the tax authority, the Federal Inland Revenue Service.

Sources say some private sector interest groups are planning to engage the Presidency with a view to stopping the implementation of the Bill which, they say, is inimical to the private sector and the economy at large.

The equities market would be directly affected if this Bill becomes law as investors worried about the impact the levy could have on company profitability may dump stocks at a frantic pace.

The document obtained by BusinessDay was signed February 19 by Mohammed Ataba Sani-Omolori, a clerk at the National Assembly.
Shareholders of companies, particularly the banks, insurance companies and PFAs, have kicked back.

Issues ranging from accountability to accessibility were raised and they advised their companies’ Boards of Directors not to approve any form of contribution into the Fund.

“The Act does not make sense because the contributors won’t have control over the Fund. Why do we scare investors? I don’t think it is good idea as it will scare away investors, so it must be jettisoned,” Sunny Nwosu, national coordinator emeritus, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), told BusinessDay on phone.

Moses Igbrude, publicity secretary, ISAN, said, “You can’t make companies to contribute to the NHF without letting them have access to it. President Buhari should not sign it.

The shareholders own the companies and we need to ask the companies whether they were represented at the public hearing on the Bill before its passage at the National Assembly.

If they were represented, they will need to explain to shareholders the benefits and who manages the funds.”

Attempts to reach the chairman, Senate Committee on Housing and Urban Development, Barnabas Gemade (APC, Benue), proved abortive as he did not pick his calls.

However, a member of the committee, Matthew Uroghide (PDP, Edo), told BusinessDay on Tuesday that he would check on the Bill before commenting on it.

“When I am in the office, I will go through the Bill before commenting on it. I will be in the office by next week,” he said in a telephone interview.

Source: BusinessDayNg

Professionals Chart Path To Real Estate Revival

With the conclusion of the presidential election, which saw the incumbent emerged winners, experts in the sector have urged the Buhari administration to come up with more robust policies, programmes that will revive the sector and reposition it as the second largest employer of labour behind agriculture.

To these experts, housing is a sector, which seriously deserved appropriate intervention from government.
According to them, international standards have set the maximum amount that can be dedicated from a workers’ salary, which should not exceed 30 per cent of the gross pay.

Regrettably, rents for descent accommodation in most urban areas in Nigeria exceed this benchmark.
The immediate past president, Nigeria Institute of Architect, Tonye Braide, said housing is a starting point in ameliorating the high living standards in urban centres.

He stressed that when rents are excessively high, alternative sources of earnings are normally sought, which leads to corruption.


Braide, however, believed that government would take pragmatic steps in its second term to make housing affordable and available.

According to him, simple economics states that where the supply rises and demand remain fixed the price should fall.”

There are critical factors responsible for the high cost of housing. The first is land cost. The cost of land in most urban centres are artificial. Speculation and greed are factors, which drive the prices.

“The actual cost of procurement of government acquired land is relatively low and affordable but speculation and greed push prices to figures up to 500 per cent.”

The result is that in building an affordable house, the actual construction costs are almost at par with the cost of land. This should not be. Land should be no more than about 15 to 20 per cent of the cost of the final development costs.

“People buy land at highly inflated rates because so many are pursuing so few plots with appropriate infrastructure”, he said.

Braide therefore urged government to embark on a massive public works programme, which should include development of site, and services housing projects to give access to cheap land complete with infrastructure.
Communities, he said, can receive schools, primary health care centres or percentage of housing development thereon in lieu of direct cash compensation.

To create employment, the renowned architect said there should be one SME factory making one building component or the other within 100 kilometers of every local council headquarters.

This, he said, will also bring down construction costs because “over 25 per cent of construction costs go to the logistics of transportation of the materials, while a reasonable reduction of cases of double taxation on building materials can be achieved”.

Also, the Chairman, Estate Surveying and Valuation Registration Board of Nigeria (ESVARBON), Sir Nweke Umezuruike, said the government should sincerely assess itself whether it has done well to continue the policies or if there is need to readjust in their policies for the next four years.

Describing housing as one of the very disturbing areas that should be tackled frontally, he said construction industry along side agriculture are two key areas all over the world that normally creates massive employment.
Unfortunately this aspect of these areas, Umezuruike said is not being tackled.

He also regretted that over a decade, Nigeria has established itself, as a trading nation even though, there is no country all over the world that has made progress being a trading nation.He urged the government to change that attitude by leading Nigeria into more productive activities in the two areas of agriculture and construction industry.

Source:Tide News Online

Despite setbacks, Nigeria’s real estate investors to expect windfall in 2019

Recent statistics have shown that the Nigerian real estate sector has been suffering setbacks. Out of the ₦15 trillion worth of credit facilities (bank loans) that were given to the private sector in Q4 2018, real estate only got ₦622 billion. This represents just 4% of the total loans/credit.

A quick analysis of the 2018 selected banking sector indicators’ report, as released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), revealed that the total bank credit for the real estate sector declined by 12% between Q3 and Q4 2018.

During the third quarter, the real estate sector got ₦710 billion, while the corresponding value in Q4 declined to ₦622 billion.

Bank credit falls for the 4th consecutive quarter – Although the sector received  ₦622 billion worth of loans in Q4, the amount represented the third consecutive quarter decline in the amount of bank loans allocated to the sector.

In 2018, for instance, credit allocated to real estate decreased from ₦784.2 billion in first quarter, to ₦622.7 billion in the last quarter.

5-year low of bank credit to real estate sector – The latest dip in the bank’s credit/loans to the sector is not a new trend. In Q1 2015, credit allocated to the private sector was ₦615 billion, which fell to ₦548.2 billion in Q2 of the same year. By Q4 2015, bank credit to real estate stood at ₦692.2 billion.

This suggests that the cyclical growth movements in the real estate sector can be traced to the decline in banks’ credit available to investors.

Agricultural sector receives much more credit facilities than real estate – The agricultural sector has benefited the most from credit facilities given to private investors.

For instance, during the last quarter of 2018, the agricultural sector received the highest bank’s credit of ₦3.5 trillion.

Similarly, the Oil and Gas and Manufacturing sectors are ranked second and third respectively, as their total credits stood at ₦2.2 trillion and ₦1.4 trillion for the period under review. However, the Education and Mining sectors got the lowest credit allocations.

Nigeria’s Real Estate Sector is growing nonetheless – Without a doubt, the real estate sector has continued to be one of the most important sectors in the Nigerian economy.

Figures have shown that the sector contributed immensely to Nigeria’s gross domestic product (GDP). For instance, in 2018, it contributed ₦1.26 trillion to the country’s national income.

Moreover,  the sector grew by 38% between the first and last quarter of 2018.

However, the percentage contribution of real estate to GDP declined to 6.41% in 2018 from 6.85% in 2017. Notwithstanding, the real estate sector is engulfed with big potentials.

What analysts say – In developed climes, the mortgage sub-sector plays an important role in stimulating the real estate sector.

But while there have been several mortgage schemes and initiatives in Nigeria , the impact has remained somewhat unfelt.

In the meantime, investment analysts have expressed different views on the outlook of the real estate sector. Executive Director and Co-founder of Pertinence Limited, an investment firm, Mr. Sunday Olorunsheyi, said earlier in January:

“it will be difficult to project the fortunes of the real estate sector, owing to factors such as lack of clear and consistent policies from regulators and a high degree of uncertainty, especially due to the general elections.”

On the other hand, the Chief Executive Officer of Lifepage Group, an investment holding firm, Oladipupo Clement, scored the industry high.

“More landed properties were sold and bought in 2018 than apartments and houses, due to high capital requirement and cost of fund.

Despite uncertainties, such as a decline in oil prices, political instability, inflation and the rising cost of funding, the real estate sector will still thrive.”

Windfall for investors and the growth potentials– If you ask me, I would say the Nigerian real estate sector is what you may want to invest in. Investors in the real estate sector are likely to smile to the banks soon,  as they get returns on their investments.

Generally, Nigeria’s real estate sector was sluggish in 2018 because of the lull in the nation’s economy. Real estate experts will likely experience better performance this year because of improvements in the economy, and the anticipated political and economic stability in the country after the just concluded general elections.

There was excess liquidity in the economy during the election period. Recall that the President recently expressed concerns over the huge amount of foreign currency flooding the country, intended to influence the general elections.

As the general elections wound up, the movements of both foreign and domestic currencies for electioneering processes will likely spread and drive patronage in the residential and commercial angles of the real estate sector. Eventually, what this does sometimes is to pressure the price of estate properties to increase, which implies higher revenue for investors.

Similarly, 2019 will spark the beginning of new governments in some states across the federation. These states will have either consolidated or new policies, which may drive economic activities uniquely away from past administrations.

Again, contracts and appointment lobbying will also form a block on its own. All these interplays are likely to redistribute income in some ways, and the real estate sector is likely to benefit in no small measure.
How the economy reacts- Growth in the real estate sector in Nigeria will have impact on the economy significantly, from the jobs it creates to revenue generation.

Specifically, the real estate’s multiplier effect in terms of job creation is significant. Also, real estate activity stimulates the economy indirectly through the value-added impacts of the purchase of goods and services that stem from real estate-related businesses and transactions.

Source: Nairametrics

EDPA revokes sublease deeds of 24 abandoned properties in BDPA Estate, Ugbowo

The Edo Development and Property Agency (BDPA) has revoked sublease deeds of some abandoned properties in the Bendel Development and Property Authority (BDPA) Estate in Ugbowo axis of Benin City, the state capital.

The agency said that the deeds were revoked in line with the clauses 2(j) and 3(a) of the deed of sublease and following several abandonment notices published in local and national newspapers.

In a statement by the Executive Chairman, EDPA, Isoken Omo, the agency said that trespassers on the revoked plots will be prosecuted, asking those with enquires to contact the agency for further clarification.

The affected plots are located on A close, 9th, 18th, 11th, 19th, 2nd, 14th, 16th, 7th, and 15th streets.

According to her, “The general public’s attention is by this notice drawn to the fact that the following abandonment notices placed in the Observer Newspaper of May 2, 2018 (page 9) and ThisDay Newspaper of May 2, 2018 (page 47) and Final Notice to Repossess Abandoned Properties at BDPA Estate Ugbowo, Edo State placed in the Vanguard Newspaper of January 21, 2019 (page 28) and the Observer Newspaper of January 22, 2019 (page 19), the subleases of the following properties have been revoked forthwith by Edo Development and Property Agency (EDPA) by virtue of Clauses 2(j) and 3(a) of the Deed of Sublease.”

The affected plots are: Plot 23, A Close; Plot 176, 9th Street; Plot 178, 9th Street; Plot 179, 9th Street; Plot 181, 9th Street; Plot 182, 9th Street; Plot 261, 18th Street; Plot 172, 11th Street or Lucky Street; Plot 41, 3rd or 19th Street; Plot 100, 3rd Street or 19th Street; Plot 101, 3rd or 19th Street; Plot 87, 2nd Street and Plot 229, 14th Street.

Others are Plot 230, 14th Street; Plot 224, 16th Street; Plot 148, 7th Street or Jonathan Akpoborie Street; Plot 72, 7th Street or Jonathan Akpoborie Street; Plot 159, 11th Street; Plot 167, 11th Street; Plot 186, 15th Street; Plot 132, 7th Street or Jonathan Akpoborie Street; Plot 195, 15th Street; Plot 146, 7th Street or Jonathan Akpoborie Street and Plot 104, 3rd or 19th Street.

Source: VanguardNgr

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