The Managing Director of real estate firm, Wemabod Limited, Oluyemi Ejidiran has said the company is working together with Nigerians in the diaspora through a recently unveiled housing initiative aimed at assisting those residing outside the country to have access to safe, affordable and quality homes.
Mr. Ejidiran, stated this during a courtesy visit of the Nigerian Institute of Estate Surveyor and Valuers (NIESV), led by the President, Mr. Johnbull Amayaevbo in Lagos.
While stating that the firm has registered an entity in Dallas and Texas called, Wemabod Translantic, which enables them to do business both in the United States and Nigeria, Ejidiran added that through the scheme, the firm would secure real estate investment from Nigerians in the diaspora.
He hopes that the initiative would be a game changer in real estate development in the country.
“Most Nigerians in the diaspora want to build houses in Nigeria, they are looking for a face they can link with the U.S. that can link them with a reputable firm in Nigeria and we believe that if we key into that bucket, chances are that we will be able to secure investment in U.S. and that investment will drive our development projects”, Ejidiran said.
He also said studies from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) show that diaspora remittals constitute about N35 billion to N40 billion yearly. He noted that the figure for last year was about $37.5b, adding that the significant component of the remittances is invested in real estate.
“Wemabod is embarking on the project development, while the gestation period is between 24 to 36 months. That means the project takes about three years but where is the funding for the project coming from, he revealed.
Most of the funds are from the commercial banks; even the mortgage institution cannot in fact fund big time projects.
Premium projects typically are sold for about N100 million per unit minimum. We have luxury products, which are sold for about 180 to 200 million minimum per unit but the mortgage funding we have these days may not be able to support 50 homes all the time.”
As a company running for over 60 years, based on our culture of integrity, we can midwife a relationship between those off-takers in the diaspora and their dream home here in Nigeria”, he said.
However, he also lamented that with the government’s new policy, the cost of construction would increase.
He further said practitioners in the real estate sector are also looking at other ways of developing houses to reduce how the cost of input will impact projects, adding that with the use of technology, the rate of delivery will be faster.