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What It Takes To Be A Successful Real Estate Developer In Nigeria

By Sabitu Magaji Today real estate is increasingly marked by professionalism and it is increasingly recognised by the Nigerian public. A mismatch between the work…

By Sabitu Magaji

Today real estate is increasingly marked by professionalism and it is increasingly recognised by the Nigerian public. A mismatch between the work done and what the market needs can cost a lot of money in losses. A successful real estate developer needs a thorough education and a good knowledge of social, economic and environmental trends that determine or can determine future property prices. Real estate developers are respected and valued only when they set the bar of professional competence high for themselves.

A contemporary real estate developer is a specialist well-versed in all property market processes; from the twists and turns of territorial planning, available ways to change a building’s purpose, the legislative framework, the tax and legal system, economic factors, to good understanding of human psychology.

The main functions of a successful real estate developer are:
Creating the preliminary concept.
Searching for a plot, its valuation and acquisition.

Making a detailed plan.
Preparing project management documents.

Marketing activities, lease/sales contracts.
Securing project funding.
Designing—coordinating work of Architects and designers.

Construction—coordinating work of contractors, subcontractors, and technical supervisors.

Submitting an application for approval for use—registering the buildings, utility, etc.
Use—lease and/or sale of the property. Property approved for use can be sold or remain with the developer and rented out.
Lastly, the real estate developer is in charge of quality assurance and maintenance.

A new wave of developers like the Group Chief Executive of Thinklab Group, Dr. Sai’d Kori, are redefining what it takes to be a successful real estate developer in Nigeria. Having earned his post graduate studies specializing in Sustainable Urban Development, Dr. Sai’d Kori is a leading private-sector figure in the sustainable urban development efforts in the country. He is known for his insistence on quality and sustainability in his real estate development approach and execution.

Sustainable real estate development is about creating sustainable communities that are energy and water efficient, and providing an environmentally friendly community for people. With an inherent focus on sustainable practices of managing our depleting resources and reducing our carbon footprint. Real estate developers who practice sustainable development are awarded a wide array of benefits which includes improved investment results, low operating costs of properties, and improved health and production quality of the population.

Real estate developers must understand that the property market needs a broader look, taking into account sustainable development aspects like quality of life, environmental quality, public interest, urban development and urban regeneration. Sustainable property development contributes to improving quality of life. The added value it creates often exceeds its economic value because it creates social and cultural value that can ensure continuity of the real estate developer’s action, social prestige, and pride in one’s specialty.

Successful sustainable real estate developers have three added things to the above mentioned functions that sets them apart. Qualities urbanists like Dr. Sai’d Kori embody.

Long Time Approach: sustainability depends on a long time approach to decision making. Sustainable real estate developers desire for human societies to remain healthy and functional far into the future beyond politics and greedy corporate decision making. A long time approach cushions the outcome of a crisis and assures durability.

Holistic Approach: Sustainable development requires a holistic interdisciplinary approach to planning. For example, traffic planning is from the start related to land use, house development, air quality, etc. the coordination and integration of various actions is important when planning real estate at different scales and for durability.

Strategic Thinking: Excessive focus on problems hinders the ability to see and achieve a breakthrough at any level. Instead of focusing on issues, it is important for real estate developers to focus their attention and efforts on identifying new strategic opportunities and pragmatic ways to actualise quality and environmentally friendly properties and development.

Magaji is a Development Manager

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