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What joint venture means to real estate consumers

Though joint venture (JV) agreements may not be new in the Nigerian real estate market, in the last couple of years, the market has seen growing interest and confidence in JVs now sweeping across private and public sectors of the economy.

While JVs means shared risk, guaranteed capital inflow, increased volume of production and increased expertise based on experience, to the products and services consumers, JVs mean quality assurance and timely delivery of products and services, all things being equal.

This, exactly, is what the new JV involving CEBRE and Excellerate promises to offer. Following the end of its JV agreement with Broll Property Group CBRE Group, Inc. (CBRE) formed a joint venture with Excellerate Property Services (Excellerate) to meet the growing demand for high-quality real estate services in Africa and the Middle East.

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Broll, a leading African commercial property services firm, has been in an affiliate agreement with CBRE since 2004 to serve their global clients in key countries such as Nigeria, Ghana and South Africa among others.  Since coming into Nigeria, Broll has been offering top notch services in the country’s real estate market.

In most cases in Nigeria, investors or developers collaborate or go into JVs for reasons of capital inadequacy, inaccessibility or unaffordability. Udo Okonjo, Fine & Country’s CEO/Vice Chair, underscored this at a recent real estate forum in Lagos where she stressed the need for collaboration in environment where credit is dry and risk is high.

“The case for collaborating in real estate cannot be stronger than now with a sluggishly recovering economy, where there’s not only massive infrastructure and protracted housing deficit, but also huge amount of underutilised and idle asset,” she said.

But for CBRE Excellerate JV, it is a case of shared expertise which is why, according to an Estate intel report, the JV will merge CBRE’s facilities management operations in Africa and the Middle East with several of Excellerate’s businesses, including corporate real estate services, facilities management, valuation and project management services.

“Our partnership with CBRE aligns with our core values and by structuring our relationship as a joint venture, rather than an alliance, we will pool our respective skills and expertise and foster intense collaboration, which will drive superior client outcomes,” Gordon Hulley, CEO, Excellerate Holdings, assured in his comment on the new JV.

The new JV will find the Nigerian market an interesting destination which is confirmed by Andrei Ugarov, partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) who said, “Nigeria is still a viable market. Capital is a challenge but deals are happening. It means funds are available. Players in the industry are making use of other financing options to fund real estate development project ts”.

Meanwhile, Broll Group has moved on and is currently pursuing a Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) acquisition deal. The BEE programme was launched by the South African government to redress the inequalities of Apartheid by giving black  South African citizens economic privileges not available to Whites.

Explaining the circumstances that led to their over a decade agreement with CEBRE, Jonathan Broll,  chair of the Broll Group, said, “as South African society changed, we realised we have a responsibility to ourselves, our shareholders and the public to conclude a BEE deal as soon as possible. After a protracted period of negotiations to be acquired by CBRE, it became apparent that an agreement satisfying this condition would not be reached. I believe that events have therefore unfolded to the advantage of all parties”.

Malcolm Horne, Broll’s Group CEO, also explained, “we maintain a diversified portfolio of clients and services across 16 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa…Our success is built on relationships, high performance and service excellence, and we continue to actively seek out new business opportunities.”

It should be noted, however, that the formation of CBRE Excellerate is subject to customary closing conditions, including government approvals, and is expected to be completed in the first half of 2019.

Excellerate’s property management operations in South Africa and its soft-services business, which provides cleaning, security, and catering services across Africa, will not be part of the joint venture and CBRE will continue to operate a wholly-owned advisory services business in the Middle East and North Africa.

 

 

Cargotecture can bridge housing deficit in Lagos- Agusto & co

Agusto & Co. Limited, the foremost Pan African Credit Rating Agency and one of the leading providers of industry research, in its 2018 real estate (Lagos Residential) industry report suggested Cargotecture innovations for solving housing problems in the state.

“Going forward, Agusto & Co. believes that Cargotecture innovations in housing may be a solution to the rising housing deficit in Lagos, especially for low-income residential real estates, as this solution combines low cost, speed and environmental friendliness,” it said in the report.

Click here to watch weekly episodes of Housing Development Programme on AIT

Cargotecture or shipping container architecture is a form of architecture using steel intermodal containers (shipping containers) as structural element. It is also referred to as a portmanteau of cargo with architecture, or ‘arkitainer’.

Data obtained from Agust & Co revealed that Lagos government requires about N3.5 trillion to deliver one million housing units annually in line with the government’s desire.

If the state’s 2018 budget for capital expenditure is fully devoted for housing, it will only be able to cover less than 10 percent of its annual housing requirement. Thus, an estimated 19 years of similar expenditure will be required to bridge the current housing deficit, estimated at 3million units.

Lagos population in 1871 stood at 28,000 and grew to about 252,000 in the 1970’s. Today, Lagos population is about 20 million and it is the most populous city in Africa—almost same size as the population of Ghana.

BusinessDay survey reveals that the use of containers as building material has grown in popularity in other parts of the world due to their inherent strength, wide availability, and relatively low expense.

But in Nigeria, it is not an initiative that is well known or frequently used as a means of constructing   housing project.

Tempohousing Nigeria (THN), one of the real estate firms that uses cargotecture, while addressing misgivings of Nigerians on houses not done with bricks, said one of the biggest hurdles they have with alternative building methods is education and knowledge about cargotecture.

“What we hear is, this is container; going forward we intend to educate people and let them see what the so called container actually looks and feels like, and once you enter you realize that it even looks better than a normal building. It’s easier to control, not using cement, no cracks and all that. It’s just about education and doing things that people can walk in and see,” Tempohousing Nigeria said in statement.

Agust & Co’s survey of the residential real estate market in Lagos reveals that, as at the end of March 2018, Yaba had the highest rental yields in the mid-income residential segment, thus showing steady appreciation in rental yields.

Whereas Apapa (degraded by major traffic gridlock caused by indiscriminate parking of trucks on major roads) had the lowest annual rental yield of 3.1percent as at end of March 2018, evidencing weak demand for residential housing as well as decline in real estate values.

Agust & Co expects continued improvements in the near term regarding new residential real estate developments mainly in the mid-income segment as well as mixed-use developments.

“We believe developers will start construction of some erstwhile abandoned residential projects and new developments especially in the mixed-use segment,” it said in its 2018 report.

The report by the rating agency provides information on the Lagos residential Real Estate Market (‘the Industry’) and covers the following:  overview, size and structure of the Nigerian real estate industry and that of  Lagos residential Real Estate Industry.

 

 

HUD continues to report increases in homelessness

Like last year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development reported yet another annual increase in homelessness.

“Our state and local partners are increasingly focused on finding lasting solutions to homelessness even as they struggle against the headwinds of rising rents,” HUD Secretary Ben Carson said. “Much progress is being made and much work remains to be done but I have great hope that communities all across our nation are intent on preventing and ending homelessness.”

 

However, even this is a slowdown from previous years. Last year, veteran homelessness increased for the first time in seven years. And the chart below, released by HUD earlier this year, shows even this year’s decrease is down significantly from previous years.

Homelessness

(Source: HUD)

And this slowdown comes despite HUD’s multiple funding efforts for homelessness. Some of those efforts include when HUD announced it was awarding $2 billion to homeless assistance programs, when HUD and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs gave $43 million to find homes for homeless veterans and when HUD granted $43 million to help end youth homelessness.

Back in 2017, former HUD Secretary Julián Castro said in an exclusive interview with HousingWire that President Donald Trump’s budget lacked vision and that it would create more homeless veterans.

As the chart above shows, homeless veterans did increase in 2017. However, they decreased again in 2018. And Trump’s 2019 budget proposal would boost HUD’s funding by 1% from the previous cuts he made to the department. When Trump first took office, he cut HUD’s budget by 13.2%.

HUD also pointed out that Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria and Nate, along with western wildfires and other storms and events, caused an increase of 4,000 people living in emergency shelters.

While 31 states and the District of Columbia reported a decrease in homelessness in 2018, 19 states offset this and reported increases.

“Communities across the country are getting better and better at making sure that people exit homelessness quickly through Housing First approaches,” said Matthew Doherty, U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness executive director. “We know, however, that a lack of housing that people can afford is the fundamental obstacle to making further progress in many communities.”

The chart below shows the estimate of people experiencing homelessness from 2007 to 2018.

 

Homelessness

(Source: HUD)

While most of the homeless population lives in shelters, the chart shows 194,467 were unsheltered.

Source: Kelsey Ramírez

Goodnews for East-bound travellers on Lagos-Ibadan expressway

As part of efforts to reduce travel time and ease hardship suffered by travelers on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway, the federal government has temporarily opened the section one of the expressway, stretching from Lagos toll gate to Shagamu Interchange.

The expressway which appears to be in perpetual reconstruction has garnered notoriety for frequent motor accidents which have claimed many lives.

Click here to watch weekly episodes of Housing Development Programme on AIT

Adedamola Kuti, the federal controller of works in Lagos, explained that the reconstruction of the expressway is benefiting from the federal government’s over $600 million infrastructure fund.

It is expected that the opening of the express way would save both time and money for motorists and travelers as well.

Idris Adebayo, a motorist who spoke to journalists at the opening this morning, hoped that he would be saving about two hours travel time from Lagos to Abeokuta which used to take four to five hours on a ‘good’ day.

Source: Chuka Uroko

Why many completed houses remain unoccupied

The Registrar of Estate Surveyors and Valuers Registration Board of Nigeria (ESVARBON), Ifeanyi Uzowanne, has attributed the large number of vacant houses across the country to the fact that most developers of the properties failed to consider market demands.

Uzowanne disclosed this while speaking on the sidelines of the 2018 Estate Surveyors and Valuers Assembly held recently in Abuja, which also culminated in the launching  of the Nigerian Valuation Standards (known as Green Book) to standardize, align and boost the quality of valuations for financial reporting purposes.

Uzowanne said there were many completed but unoccupied houses in virtually all states in Nigeria because the cost of most of the vacant buildings was far beyond the purchasing power of many Nigerians.

He said, “Why are these houses unoccupied? Is it because they are built without reference to what the market wants or that the rents are exorbitant?

“As the regulatory body of a profession that has to do with housing, we are concerned and that is why we say people should go to practitioners when they are making investments in housing so that they can put up houses that will meet the needs of consumers.”

The registrar added, “Most products are made based on what the market wants. When the people want two bedroom apartments and you give them duplexes, you are not building to what they need; if you build duplexes you are not meeting the needs of the people.”

He explained that the valuation standard unveiled by ESVARBON would help both dealers and consumers of properties in that regard.

“The standards that we’ve unveiled will help address this issue in a way, because most times it is not only estate valuers who produce houses. So the public is also expected to make sure that they don’t overprice properties and keep it out of the reach of some others who want it,” Uzowanne said.

Also speaking on the Green Book, the immediate past chairman of the Nigerian Institute of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV), Abuja chapter, Adamu Kasimu, said the objective was in keeping up with global best practices in the real estate valuation industry.

He said the Green Book incorporates Professional Standards (PS) and Valuation Practice Statements (VPS) that all members providing a written valuation would be required to comply with and also sets out procedural rules and guidance for valuers, covering matters not only relating to ethics and conduct, but also establish a framework for uniformity and best practice in the execution and delivery of valuations.

“The Green Book dictates the manner in which every estate surveyor and valuer should behave – meaning the valuation of all professionals should tally in terms of form, context and reliability.

Source: Daniel Adugbo

Seeking lessons from China’s long economic boom

THAT CHINA has had decades of stellar growth is beyond doubt. More controversial is what can be learned from it. Does China prove that the basic tenets of developmental economics are right? Or does it argue for an overhaul? These questions brought together an august group of Chinese and foreign economists on December 9th in Beijing. They debated a new report that distils China’s experience into a handful of lessons which, the authors argue, belong in textbooks. But judging from the reaction, publishers will not be rushing to pulp current editions just yet.

The exercise, held at Tsinghua University, was a reflection on the start four decades ago of China’s “reform and opening” period, the rebirth of the economy following Mao’s disastrous rule. The anniversary is intensely political. Yet it is also a good moment to ask how China has done so well. Forty years ago, it had a 2% share of global GDP in terms of purchasing-power parity; now it has more than 18%.

Source: economist

Surveyors decry rising number of fake survey plans

The Nigerian Institution of Surveyors says the rising number of fake survey plans in circulation has become worrisome.

The Chairman, Lagos State branch of the institution, Mr Adeleke Adeshina, attributed the high number of fake survey plans in existence to activities of quacks who avoid recording copies with relevant government agencies.

he said the number would reduce if people stopped indulging in backdating of survey plans and quit patronising fake and unregistered surveyors.

Click here to watch weekly episodes of Housing Development Programme on AIT

Adeshina made this known at a town hall meeting at the palace of the Elejinrin of Ejinrin Land, Ishola Balogun in Ikosi Ejinrin, Lagos as part of activities marking the NIS Lagos Annual General Meeting.

he said, “It is very important for members of the public to desist from patronising touts and impostors who would assure them of helping to backdate survey plans and other land documents.

“Apart from the fact that such move is against the law establishing the institution, no registered member of the association will ever promise to do such, as it is against the law and ethics of the profession.”

The immediate past Chairman of NIS Lagos branch, Gbenga Alara, said backdating copies of survey plans had been the most controversial issue in surveying in recent times.

According to him a surveyor must obtain a consent plan before they can embark on a survey job and also get permit for the record copy as well as apply for the pillar number and place, before an authentic survey plan can be produced.

“A fake surveyor would never undertake all these tasks,” he said

In his response, Balogun described the surveying profession as noble and very important in the society.

he said he would help to educate and enlighten his subjects, and urged the public to always support professionals trained to deliver on the job.

Source: Maureen Ihu-Maduenyi

Increase in local content will decrease fatalities in the construction industry

With 50 per cent of fatalities on construction sites attributed to weak scaffolding, wrong formwork placement and poor training, experts in the construction industry said inclusiveness and increase in local content would significantly reduce the trend.

They stressed that local content would also groom entrepreneurs, creates employment opportunities in construction and other sectors of the economy.

The experts, who spoke at the 25th anniversary celebration of Construction Kaiser Limited (CKL), an indigenous construction firm in Lagos, with the theme, “breaking new grounds”, noted that local content is attainable if indigenes are encouraged to have a substantial share and opportunity in the management and ownership of companies in the nation’s construction industry.

Click here to watch weekly episodes of Housing Development Programme on AIT

Expounding on the theme, “Breaking New Grounds”, Okaisabor said it has become very necessary that more Nigerians establish and grow construction companies that could work with high standards and at lower price which would ultimately eliminate the overheads associated with keeping expatriates in the country.

According to him, encouraging local content in the industry would encourage efficiency and healthy competition; improve safety and quality management system; increase collaboration and inclusiveness; grow sustainability and help solve socio-economic issues.

“It would further assist in foreign exchange savings, which in turn would strengthen the Naira with the participation of improved indigenous workers in the industry”.

“Collaboration is the way to go. We understand that it would create assess to knowledge and people, effectiveness, efficiency, innovation, human resource development, long term stability, impact, reputation and credibility.

“Introducing inclusiveness is important because we believe that sustainability can only occur when there is inclusiveness. The ability to engage individuals, irrespective of gender, tribe or religion in the society in a common goal”, he added.

On her part, Okoaru identified lack of trust for indigenous firms and bad business environment/policies as major threatening forces against indigenous firms.

She commended the firm for its achievements and urged them to remain focused, grow partnerships and embrace latest innovations in the industry.

“Believe in yourself and improve quality service through people with the right attitude, passion and skills. Manage your success and keep pushing for good standards. Understand your terrain while paying attention to conquering beyond the geographical boundaries of Nigeria”, she added.

How Buhari got N260,000 bank loan to build first house as Head of State

…Buhari remains selfless, contented despite passage of time-Aliyu Musa

…Buhari should distance himself from cabal, nepotic elements-Junaid Mohammed

Details of how President Muhammadu Buhari applied and got bank loan of N260, 000 to build his first and only house in Kaduna, have emerged, with some Nigerians questioning whether his Spartan life of 1984 when he served as head of state is still the same as the current Nigeria’s president.

The bank document, which Saturday Vanguard got exclusively, shows clearly that Buhari had resorted to taking a bank loan to be able to build his first house in Kaduna, having not been able to raise enough cash for such a project through all other means.


President Buhari After applying for the cash, which came with interest, Buhari, a Major General in the army at the time, accepted all the terms and conditions imposed by Union Bank, which provided the N260,000 loan to him and laid out the conditions attached to the offer.
In the loan document dated June 1, 1984, and addressed to Major General Muhammadu Buhari, Head of State and Commander-in-Chief, Dodan Barracks, Lagos, the bank made it clear that the loan was approved for the building of his house.

The letter signed by one M. D. Yusif, who was the manager of Union Bank at the time, the bank said: “Dear sir, we are pleased to advise that the bank has agreed to renew your facility as follows: Building Loan-N260,000, has been marked for review on the 2nd of March 1985 but in accordance with the normal banking practice; it is repayable on demand and subject to review or withdrawal at any time the bank’s option.

“Interest will be charged for the time being, at the rate of 11 percent per annum with monthly rents. Commission on turnover will be charged at 20 percent.
“The facility has been renewed subject to the following conditions: All the security items have been holding before now continue to support this lending and ordinary account should be kept strictly on creditor’s basis while loan outstands.

“Kindly signify your acceptance of the terms and conditions of the renewal by signing and returning the duplicate copy of this letter,” M. D. Yufif, said.

But as it appeared that Major Gen. Buhair was desperately in need of the loan, he quickly signed and returned the letter to Union Bank, which immediately released the cash to him for the building project in Kaduna.

 


Although this gesture has given out Buhari as a man of Spartan nature, many Nigerians are unconvinced if he would have take the loan today, given that he has made a lot of money from being the president of Nigeria for almost four years and surrounding himself with people who are said to be money-conscious and ready to do anything to get rich quick.

However, those who claim to know Buhari very well, praised him for his Spartan nature, saying he remains the same man that he was many years ago despite presiding over billions of Nigeria’s cash.

A Kaduna-based politician, Aliyu Musa, who claims to have know Buhari from childhood, told Saturday Vanguard in Kaduna on Friday that Buhari remains incorruptible despite all the posts he has held and the passage of time given his austere background and fear of God not to dip his hands into public till.

“We, who are Buhari’s friends, are proud of him and we will continue to vouch for him as an honest, contented and sincere leader who is not driven by ill-gotten wealth and that is why he went for commercial bank loan to build his first house instead of looting the public treasury as most leaders would have done.

“We know that despite being Nigeria’s president at a time when everybody wants to steal and enrich themselves, Buhari will remain steadfast to his creed not to steal a kobo from the peoples treasury,” Musa stated.

But second republic lawmaker, Junaid Mohammed, told Saturday Vanguard that Buhari might not be corrupt by taking money from the public till but has thrown himself into the ring by surrounding himself with questionable elements, who do not believe in his anti-corruption war.

Nigeria must assist EOWASC— Buhari “We want Buhari to do away with nepotism and retainership of a cabal that does not work in the interest of Nigeria because corruption extends beyond stealing public funds to conferring undue advantage on a particular set of people and tribe at the expense of other groups,” Junaid said.

Source: Soni Daniel

How To Tell If An Investment Property Is A Good Buy

The question on every new investor’s mind is simple: how do you know if an investment property will be profitable? Luckily, there are two easy formulas you can use to determine if an investment property is a good buy, financially. We’ve laid them out below. Read them over and take them to heart so that you have them at your disposal when you’re ready to make a move.

The One-Percent Rule

When you start looking at investment properties, you’ll likely have plenty of options to choose from. Rather than being a complicated equation, the one-percent rule is simply a rule of thumb that investors use to help them narrow down their options quickly and efficiently. It’s a tool that you can use to determine if a property deserves a closer look.

Click here to watch weekly episodes of Housing Development Programme on AIT

All the one-percent rule says is that a property should rent for one-percent or more of its total upfront cost.

For example:

  • A property that costs $100,000 should rent for at least $1,000 per month
  • A property that costs $200,000 should rent for at least $2,000 per month
  • A property that costs $300,000 should rent for at least $3,000 per month

Keep in mind that this rule looks at a property’s total upfront cost, meaning that you’ll have to add together the purchase price, plus closing costs, and an estimate of the total repair costs necessary to make it rentable.

If a property passes the one-percent rule, it’s worth considering. If not, move on. At this point, it’s worth setting up showings for the properties that meet this rule’s criteria. From there, you can narrow down your options further, according to your likes and dislikes.

The Cap Rate

Once you’ve narrowed down your options to a handful of potential properties, it’s time to look at the capitalization rate, or “cap rate” for short. This helps you calculate property’s potential for return on investment.

The cap rate is found by dividing the property’s net operating expenses by its purchase price. You can find the cap rate by doing the following:

  • Find your gross income by taking the average monthly rent for your property and multiplying it by 11.5. This will show the maximum amount you can make from the property, allowing for a two-week per year vacancy.
  • Then, subtract your monthly operating expenses ( utilities, taxes, maintenance) from your gross income to get your net income.
  • Divide your net income by the purchase price to find your cap rate.
  • Multiply the cap rate by 100 to find the percentage of your potential returns on the property.

Make sure not to include a mortgage payment, if you have one, in your list of monthly operating expenses. Since every investor will use a different combination of downpayment and financing, the cap rate assumes you’ve bought the property in cash. This allows you to easily compare one property’s ROI to another.

Each investor has his or her own yardstick for determining an acceptable cap rate. However, generally speaking, you want this number to be as high as possible.

Source: 

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