An indigenous but fast rising real estate development firm, Ifitech and Associates Limited, has unveiled its plan to deliver over 2,000 housing units in different parts of the country before the end of 2017.
This was disclosed in Lagos last week by the firm’s management in a media parley held in Lagos.
Unfolding the agenda of the firm, Mr Ifeanyi Isaac, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the firm, explained that the objective of Ifitech and Associates Limited from its inception when it was established eight years ago and incorporated to start the business of developing and managing estates in Nigeria, was to provide affordable and low-cost housing to ordinary Nigerians in the most convenient way.
“To achieve this objective, over the last eight years, we have dedicated ourselves to acquiring land in three states in Nigeria, namely Lagos, Enugu and Imo State.
“In Lagos, at Ibeju-lekki precisely, we currently have six schemes, while in Imo State there are two schemes and in Enugu we only have one scheme. All these schemes come under the name; Westpoint Gardens and Solid Base Gardens Estate”, he said, adding that their targets are prospective landlords in the lowest end of the property ladder or those that are considered to be low-income earners.
According to Isaac, prices of plots in the estates start from as low as N250,000, while the most expensive ones are those located in Ibeju-Lekki axis. This is within the periphery of the Dangote Refinery, Free Trade Zone and other upcoming landmark projects in Lagos State, and the price of plots in these estates range from between N1million and N2.5million, he stated.
Besides, he added that by ensuring the objectives of the firm is achieved, payment for plots in all the company’s estates have been structured to run over a period of six to twelve months. “Buyers who pay out-rightly will be able to buy at cheaper prices, while those that want to spread payment over twelve months will only have to pay a little higher that those than can make full payment.
“Currently have a sizeable number of subscribers who have started to build their own houses and this is not added to the ones the firm is building.
“In addition, we are selling to those who may not want to go through the rigours of starting from land ownership but want already built ones and we hope that by the end of 2017, we would have been able to deliver a minimum of 2000 housing units and that by 2020 we would have been able to deliver over 10,000 housing units.
“We are determined and we already have more than 200 personnel in various fields that are engaged in pushing this ambition. We understand the challenges in the economy but with the determination we will surely get there”.
Despite building these estates to target low-income earners, Isaac explained that Ifitech and Associates Limited will also ensure that residents of the estates and property owners have access to functional infrastructure, citing example of how all their estates is being provided with perimeter fencing, road networks, drainage systems, water, security, play areas for family and shopping centres.
“We are hoping to create estates that will function with a communal lifestyle, where people will live in peace and harmony irrespective of religion or ethnicity.”
On the challenge of reducing Nigeria’s housing deficit, Isaac said the government should start to partner with competent real estate developers.
This, he said can be done through Private Public Partnership (PPP) where governments at all levels would provide land to developers at reduced prices, make documentation of title more relaxed and ensure that houses that are built come into the property market at reduced prices.
He also advised the government to ensure that mortgage banks provide long-term payment facilities for the developed houses and ensure that the interest rate is at single digit. “Government should also give concessions in the areas of payments for land documentation and titles so that developers can be able to give bargain prices to ordinary Nigerians. These are things government can do and over the next twenty years the housing deficit in the country would have been reduced to the barest minimum”, he explained.
Isaac hinted that Ifitech and Associates Limited is currently working with the Imo State Government to provide mass housing and the firm is still looking for opportunities with other states to develop affordable mass housing at the shortest possible time for eligible Nigerians, “because shelter is one of the fundamental rights of all citizens and there is need for pragmatic approach to meet this all-important need for our people”, said Isaac.