Trends in property sector: How Nigerians can position for advantage

Trends in property sector: How Nigerians can position for advantage

14th February 2020

in Business


Trends in property sector: How Nigerians can position for advantage

Maduka Nweke,

Several things are challenging very fast in the global economy and Nigeria’s property sector is not an exception.

From atmospheric materials, to human beings and nature, government policies and acts of the parliament are also impacting the sector.

In the property sector, innovations, with the cost of living escalating, and personal concerns around economic conditions are creating phenomenal changes in the life of the citizens , even as the new decade presents new opportunities.

However, in whatever way we approach this new decade, in light of 2020 property trends, your home is what you make it, so enjoy it! Settle in and enjoy the home you have now, while you plan for a future in the home you just might be living in at the end of the next decade.

While we look for what is trending in the property sector, it is important to ruminate on what trended in 2019 to be able to analyse what to expect in 2020.

Private property reflects on what happened during 2019 in the South African property market, and how that will lead to 2020 property trends. This is so because some of the things that happen in our neighbouring countries or peer mates in development, could tickle innovation in another country. Before we begin to analyse what to expect in 2020 property trends, it is also prudent to reflect upon the South African property market as it stands at the end of 2019. This is because, Nigeria and South Africa have a lot of things in common and what happens in one country could tickled activity in the other country. 2020 property trends will build on everything we’ve seen during the year 2019, and while there won’t be many surprised faces around the table, there are some interesting things to expect in the new year, and the coming decade.

Sure, teleportation is not how we are travelling to and from work every day. However, the new trend in property development is the fact that people now in Lagos, Nigeria can live where they work or work where they live. This is trend is the type being provided by Eko Atlantic City and the Alaro City. In these two estates or cities as the case may be, already made provisions that will double as work environment and residential environment simultaneously.

These are yet to be suited up for any hoverboard, but the demand for high tech homes continues to grow. Where solar-powered geysers were once uncommon, they are now considered an almost standard feature for suburban homes. Similarly, fibre connectivity, with ‘Internet Of Things’-enabled infrastructure has become somewhat expected in the higher echelons of the property market. Thinking back to the last turn of a decade, when one had yet to own a smartphone and now, as we usher in 2020, smartphone penetration across Nigeria is now well over 80 per cent of the mobile phone market. The demand for an always-on, connected lifestyle is reflected in 2020 property trends, so yes, your fridge will soon tell you that you need to buy milk long before you know about it. And yes, we are looking forward to a 60-minute, app-driven grocery delivery service, as currently being trailed by a particular retailer in certain areas of Banana Island in Lagos and some of the high brow areas in Abuja. High tech homes aren’t only, however, another one of our 2020 property trends – they are a surety of our times, as real estate professionals move towards another decade of innovation.

As an election year, 2019 had its own strange struggles just from that single event. The fact that there were enough money to through around, a lot of people invented some structures from foreign lands and were at the verge of unveiling them but suspended to avoid the eyes of graft agencies in the land.

Traditionally, election years are known for being quieter than usual on the property and investment front, as investors prefer to hold off on making any big decisions until a certain level of political certainty returns. Once the votes had been counted, activity, as predicted, picked up a little. That was the situation Nigerians found themselves. But, with the advent of further load shedding, and uncertainty around property rights in South Africa, and the readiness of Nigerians to spend the accumulated funds, there are a few things we should expect more of in 2020. We’ve thrown the term “junk status” around a few times this year, and somewhat fearfully ogled the news headlines each time. But, where there is concern, there is always opportunity. While ratings agencies’ perceptions of South Africa in terms of investment opportunities may seem worrisome, we must keep in mind that foreign investment into South Africa is changing in many ways.

In previous decades, private foreign investment often come into the country via our property market, and while that may be declining in some areas, there is still a good bet for property seekers. In 2016, we hit an all-time high with foreign buyers purchasing one in twenty homes available for purchase across the Nigeria property market. The same scenario plays out in South Africa where you already have established property market.

How that plays out in 2020 remains to be seen, and we are sure that property seekers from other countries are also keeping a close eye on the change that set in. Looking ahead at 2020 property trends, we’ll soon know what to expect in this legislative realm for the Nigeria property market.

Another aspect of the trend we shall be looking out for is affordable housing market where the Federal Government has done pilot scheme. If that succeeds and government invests much in real estate, then there will be the tendency for house prices to crash within affordability ranges.

Affordability and sustainability in this aspect will count in the ensuing trend but experts would not even consider this another one of the 2020 property trends. This is because, it’s simply an essential move for everyone on the planet. Whether compelled by purpose, cause, or circumstance, the need to create and follow through on more sustainable living choices is now part and parcel of modern living.

From small, personal acts of curbing combat change from your own garden, to dealing with larger concerns around national natural resource management, the agenda is very clear. The more everyone does to preserve what the world has to offer, the better off everyone will be by the end of the next decade.

2020 property trends reflect this already, as the demand for eco-friendly, green living properties continues to grow. Some experts noticed some interesting development in the property market in 2019.

The affordable housing market will cause a booming run that generate high GDP input. And, if 2019 is anything to go by, then this is set to continue as one of our surefire 2020 property trends. There are two elements to this 2020 property trend. Firstly, government support for first-time homeowners is great.

For example, the loans from government agencies provides lower and medium income earners with a substantial subsidy, that can be used to purchase property. Similarly, properties purchased for under N1 million could attract no transfer duties. And, as the need for affordable housing options grows, the firmly believe that this section of the Nigeria property market will continue to bloom in the coming decade continues.

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