As the world remains in limbo and uncertainty persists as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic, there is great panic in the world, leading to drastic choices being made. In the face of the global lockdowns people have resorted to desperate measures to survive in both their social and business lives.
In this unusual time many believe it is better to have their cash in their hands or stashed away in some financial institutions because they don’t know what the future holds. But the Chief Executive Officer of Hampton-Row Real State company, Kazeem Bello-Osagie has noted that, this, may not all together be a wise choice.
In a recent interview he posited that while it is good to have cash at this trying time, he also pointed out that it is an investment such as real estate that may survive most eventualities like the COVID-19.
“Real estate is the best investment for many reasons because in thick and thin, through all the crisis we have experienced as a country since independence , real estate has been the most consistent and sustainable form of investment, that can grow the value of your naira against the odds of devaluation and mono product styled economy. Cash evaporates if not well invested. Your 100 thousand naira in December 2019 is equivalent to 90 thousand naira today in less than 5months,” he said, noting that the drop in global oil prices and nonavailability of Diaspora funds have taken their toll on all businesses, including the real estate sector.
He said: “As you know, we are an oil-dependent economy and the recent unprecedented crash in the oil prices in the global market, indicates that government will slow down on their spending, which will have a snowballing effect on the real estate market, spiraling down to property developers. Another catalyst in the past for the real estate growth in Nigeria has been funds from the Diaspora and most of these developed economies that warehouse these funds are already in recession, hence we can foresee the ripple effect, it would have on Nigerians wanting to repatriate funds , to invest in the real estate market in Nigeria. Worst case scenario in this regard is that cost of houses will depreciate , but sooner or later it will bounce back when the economy stabilizes. Because this is somewhat a Force Majeure and an unforeseen crisis. A lot of property developers may have to readjust their prices to an invincible market , thus creating a glut in the sector, especially as there will be distress sales of properties. I am however positive there will be a major bounce back for the sector.
Kazeem Bello-Osagie is from the popular Bello-Osagie family of Edo State. He was born 44 years ago to Chief Shittu Bello Osagie and Mrs Taminoene Amy Bello-Osagie. His father was a Managing Director in Bendel Breweries and Bendel Cement Company in the Mid-Western region during the Second Republic.
He established Hampton-Row Real Estates in 2014 , but had actively been involved in the real estate sector for over 15 years in the informal sector, while he still ran QUO Courier & Logistics before realizing there was a major gap in the housing industry in Nigeria, in areas of finishing and transferring real value to the end users.
According to him, their business model is building mini estates in clusters. Their signature project in Lekki is the “The Domicile By Hampton Row 1 & 2”.
“At Hampton-Row Real Estates , we are bent on changing the misconception in the Nigerian real estate and property development sector; that is for you to have what is classified as luxury in a property; the subscriber must be made to pay a premium in terms of pricing. It’s the little things like time value that is passionately applied in the development of a property and negligible cost, that adds to the detailing and grandeur of a property. Our target market is the emerging middle class, middle class and the upper middle class. In future we intend to go into low-cost housing, which is the future of real estate in Nigeria,” he added.