By Akhigbe Dominic.M. Esq.,
FRI, SEPTEMBER 6 2017-theG&BJournal-Over time, we have repeatedly emphasized on the major role of private developers in bringing affordable housing to the masses. No doubt the housing subsector has gained momentum in the last few years. The National Housing Funds has found it very convenient to partner with the Private Developers in ensuring the housing deficit which was put at about 17 million in 2012 is drastically reduced. It is clear that this relationship between the NHF and foremost private developers is yielding the expected dividends.
In the last week of September, we ran into a renowned Real Estate Developer and Construction Company and owner of one of the largest landmarks in Ogun mega city as it launches its third phase of housing development of 1,000 (one thousand) housing units for acquisition through the National Housing Fund (NHF) window and other in-house payment plans.
Sim Properties and Homes Ltd otherwise known as “SP HOMES LTD” is an integrated company of qualified professionals who are actively engaged in the business of Real Estate Development, Property Management, Planning, Architectural Design, Surveying, Project Engineering etc. The company is piloted by Dr. Ahonsi Simeon Ohiren; a seasoned Professor of Housing Development and Management, an ardent believer in sustainable development with a proven track record in the Real Estate industry. In a chat with PropertyLogic, the erudite businessman informed us that for the past 10 years of the company’s existence, their slogan which is “Housing all Nigerians” remains their driving force and bedrock in the provision of affordable housing within Nigeria. He informed us that his company has over the years turned out housing units that suit global standards for their subscribers which cut across various sects of the economy such as unions/cooperatives, telecommunication companies, public officers, government parastatal, private institutions among others. This he said has mostly been achieved through the National Housing Fund (NHF) window and other in-house payment plans.
Professor Ahonsi further informed us that his company; Sim Properties and Homes Limited has gallantly completed phases 1 and 2 of the development of over 300 (Three Hundred) housing units comprising 1, 2, 3 bedroom semidetached bungalows and 3 bedroom fully-detached bungalows within their estate in Ofada, Ogun State with 141 (One Hundred and Forty One) of such housing units fully developed and keys delivered to Subscribers through NHF in collaboration with Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN). He said the estate boasts of basic infrastructural facilities such as a dedicated 500KVA transformer, Pipe borne water, Stone-based motorable road, Shopping mall etc.In the further opinion of the CEO, his company is Still relentless and driven by a burning passion to equitably contribute to the reduction of the housing deficit in Nigeria which reportedly stands at about 17,000,000 (Seventeen Million) as has again launched their third phase of housing development with a projection of the development and construction of 1,000 housing units together with infrastructural facilities at Masters Golden City, Ofada.
The principal constraint however as lamented by Dr. Ahonsi remains Project Finance/ Funding. He thereby made a clarion call on Investors and Financiers; while still making a passionate plea to the Federal Government of Nigeria, through Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) to once again extend their hands of partnership and also look into the lifting of the suspension currently being placed on Estate Development Loan (EDL) to private Developers who have a proven track record on successful usage of EDL.
The Professor of Urban & Regional Planning equally applauded the Federal Government of Nigeria for the unveiling of the Federal Integrated Staff Housing (FISH) program through the office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF). This indeed is another landmark and reassurance of the commitment of FG to provision of affordable housing to Federal Civil Servants; which make up the bulk of their Clients.
In view of the huge successes so far recorded in affordable housing delivery to Nigerians through this window of private developers’ participation, PropertyLogic seek to implore the Federal Government of Nigeria, through the Honorable Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) to equally consider the provision of a tax holiday to the Key Players in the housing sector so as to increase housing delivery, thereby ensuring affordability and sustainable development. When this is done; the government would have delivered on a major derivative to the citizenry.
Akhigbe Dominic.M. Esq., /Property Law Expert/CEO, H.I.E Properties & Homes Ltd/SENIOR STRATEGIC PARTNER, PropertyLogic Incorporated/Seasoned Business Coach/Columnist of The BusinessDay/Contributing Editor, govandbusinessjournal.com.ng