An housing solution expert and a real estate success strategist popularly known as The Mayor of Housing, as spoken on the simplest economy solutions and other series of issues bordering the country during his interview session with the Atlantic TV and monitored by profjaysblog.com on the 28th of September, 2022.
The Mayor of Housing whose real name is given as China Emeka or MyAce China which means, Millennium Young Alloy China Emeka is a real estate success strategist who has planted his name in the real estate industry with a mark of excellent in solving housing deficits in Nigeria and Africa at large.
The Mayor of Housing has opined that, he does not sell houses and properties but rather sell value across the real estate space. He further stressed that, he’s one person that has volunteered to coordinate value within the real estate space to reduce the housing deficits in Nigeria and Africa within the next seven years.
When asked during the interview session what the real estate practitioners can do to ameliorate the inflation and high interest rates the country is facing, the estate success strategist waste no time to explain that, in the real estate space, that, housing happens to be one of the only commodity that is shielded during inflation. He went further to opined that, people actually gain more in house during inflation than in normal period.
“Inflation means the prices of goods and services are increasing. This would make houses and rental value to also increase”.
“You know if you bought a house for N10m when things were normal, and the house grows to N50m due to inflation and the rent has moved from say N100,000 to N500,000; if you are not selling that property during the inflation period, you are gaining because you are now making N400,000 extra rental income from that property per year and you are not re-buying the property. It means you are making appreciated value from an old cost. And if you have to sell, you sell at appreciated value. That is how Real Estate helps investors make money during inflation.”
He later stated that, real estate shields an investor from inflation. He went further to state that, it was due to inflation in the country that made he ventures into what is known as short-term land-banking which has also been started by some of his colleagues. Which simply means buying land and selling at appreciated value.
“For the first time, I am offering an opportunity for investors to have up to 300 per cent return on investment on land-banking in a very short period. It is actually meant to serve as buffer to inflation.”
“The most important thing to do in a period of inflation is not to hold back cash but to hold tangible assets. This is not the best time to save cash! The purchasing power of your cash is declining daily.”
As my mentor, Grant Cardone would say; “cash is trash if you don’t use it”
“You need more money now to buy the same quantity of goods.”
The Mayor of Housing later advised people on shielding their idle cash during inflation as starting a business during such a period could means losing their capital due to lack of expertise. So, the best idea is to bank it in a fixed asset that would not depreciate, which is land.
The final thing is activity. Economy rests on emotions and exchange. If you go to all the economic definitions, you will always see exchange and confidence. It is when people have confidence in a particular time or environment that a lot of business exchanges are done. When people are afraid or have negative emotion, they tend to horde, hold back or stay put. Lack of circulation reduces economy especially since money became a currency.
He quoted by saying that; “Since money became a currency, cash-flow became more money than cash!”
What you should be looking at now is to find a way of fixing your money in non-depreciable assets or just increase your present business activities. Ask yourself; “how can my activity push my cash-flow in my business?” This is not the time for people to hold back or to fear. The more exchanges and activities you do, the more you gain and buffer the inflation. If before now you were making five sales in a month to be where you are, you should target 10 sales now! That increase in exchange and activity increases the economic value of your business and buffers it from what is happening.
Emotions: When people do not trust an economy, that economy declines. That is what actually decides the forex exchange rate. When the global economy is confident in Nigeria’s economy, more investments come in and more demand for the local currency (naira) makes it appreciate. But when more people are afraid for whatever reasons, the demand for the local currency (in this case the Naira) drops and demand for the Dollar increases, in that local environment, local currency drops in value. We must do whatever we can in the local economy and in our small businesses to generate and increase economic activity in the economy now to buffer the present inflation.
This is time for us to buy more of ancillary support products and services that support housing: sand, cement, building materials, etc. Right now in my company, we increased the number of units we want to build and we have also opened up the hitherto short-term land-banking opportunity with high yield, so people can take advantage and help the economy. Do not hold back cash.”
The Mayor of Housing was further asked what he’s doing in his space as a real estate success strategist to solve housing problems in Nigeria. He hinted that, his brand, the Mayor of Housing was birthed due to the reasons stated below.
“I looked at the problem in Nigeria and I have discovered why we can’t have mortgage in Nigeria. This is because it is built around stable institutionalized workforce. Most mortgage plans are within 10 to 50 or 100 years. It means the person taking the mortgage is going to be in stable employment to keep paying. In Nigeria, jobs are not stable. In the national housing fund, collection has not been a problem. What has been the problem is disbursement. Earlier this year, N4.5trillion of uncollected and undisbursed national housing fund was stuck with the Federal Mortgage Bank because of problem of pre-qualification. Our institutions have been getting weaker. My advocacy is to return to where we were before oil boom and political rot. Where we were was cooperative system. During the golden years of agric exploits, all was done on the back of cooperatives which are built around people and productivity and Nigeria is the most populous black nation. That population, can be exploited for cooperatives. That is why I talk of social funding. All the institutions and companies that are doing well in housing for their staff come through their staff cooperatives. Even the international oil corporations (IOCs) in Port Harcourt who are about 80 per cent of our clients are in cooperatives.
The second thing we need also look at is collaborations in the private sector. There is no government with the will and mind to provide low-cost housing enough to solve the housing deficit. There are between 17m and 22m units of housing deficit in Nigeria.”
“Everything my colleagues and I do in this space is not up to one million units. So, there is a state of emergency in housing that requires us to collaborate, both among the developers and among off-takers. This is a model in in-house collaboration. There should be industry collaboration meaning those within the sector should be able to deliver value to the off-takers. That is what I have been doing. When I say I am championing the cause of housing in Africa and Nigeria, it is not just in buying and selling but collaborations. We are building solution through innovation and collaboration.”
The Mayor of Housing also talked about some of the causes of buildings collapse in the estate space when he was been asked by the Atlantic TV correspondent. He responded as saying that, some of the causes are absence of government regulation.
“In the Real Estate space, even the Realtors are not regulated. We are trying to bring in an institute that can regulate the sector. Anybody can claim to be a developer. Luckily, we have an association but it is not an institute. Recently, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has been demanding for a certificate of registration with Real Estate developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN) before you can operate as a developer, but that is not enough. The institutionalized structure is that every developer goes to the housing authorities in any location for vetting and pre-qualification of your building plans. Because corruption in Nigeria has weakened institutions, they know that a plan is not the standard, they still compromise and approve it for little money. When you decide to build highrise buildings, it becomes important that standards are not compromised. The same thing is causing flood everywhere. It does not mean the government does not have a master plan, it is the people in offices that give approval for buildings on waterways because someone gave them some money. That is why we need to come together to collaborate.”
“I support that REDAN should be recognized as a private sector organization with power to issue certificates and sanction people that are not doing the right thing. If it is private based, we can regulate ourselves better than the government because it will not have corruption. Because the government authorities are doing the approvals now, it is badly done.”
Remember that tall building that collapsed in Ikoyi Lagos in Nigeria last year, the engineer had resigned because he told the owner the truth but because the owner had money to pay the authorities, they got it approved. Thank God that the professional resigned and walked away, else, he would have been implicated. It is high time the government began to enact acts that would empower private organization-based institutions to regulate themselves. The medical lab scientists for instance, won’t allow you to practice without getting the license from The Medical Laboratory Council of Nigeria. The Council is built on private practice and they are very strong. You may hear a few issues but not much. It is high time we began to strictly and strongly regulate building construction process in Nigeria.”
In conclusion, the Mayor of Housing advice Nigerians and the new government even as 2023 approaches not to miss this coming opportunity to rebuild the country by electing a competent, capable and result oriented leader in the general elections. Before we can expect the world to have confidence in Nigeria, we as a people must do the primary thing which would be to rebuild the confidence of Nigerians in Nigeria, then, rebuild the confidence of Nigerians-in-Diaspora in Nigeria and lastly, yo rebuild the confidence of the world in Nigeria. He beckon on Nigerians to vote in leaders who can deliver on promises made.
“There are two products of the 21st century: Convenience and Security. We use facebook because it is more convenient and more secure to do so. That’s why people use hailing taxi such as Bolt. Any government coming in must increase ease of foing business in Nigeria: power, tax incentive, registration, infrastructure, etc.”
“It is time for us to think of integration. I am shocked that African countries have not embraced solar despite being the centre of the sun. We must harness all energy segments and integrate them into the national grid. Power should be the cheapest thing in Africa because of the sun. Kigali is one of the most convenient places to do business in Africa. You can register your business for free and online from anywhere; just a matter of minutes. Nigeria must address this, not only for citizens but for foreigners. Security must be addressed.”
“The economic decline is not because of new laziness but due to insecurity. Farmers cannot go to the farms anymore. They are afraid. People cannot travel on the roads again because of insecurity. When people do not travel, goods and services do not circulate and prices will definitely increase. Security and convenience are the two key pressure points the new government should fight. Nigeria will bounce back if this is done.”
Nigeria has what it takes to grow its economy. In the 1970s, agric was the key thing and cooperatives were reigning: Groundnut, cocoa, palm produce. The Naira was higher than the dollar, but when oil came, we were made to believe that government was to take care of the citizens. People sat back and productivity crashed. It’s time for us to rise up and stir up the core of productivity, personal and collaborative industry that is innate in our gene and reclaim our place, not just as the giant of Africa, but as this new giant rises from its rut, we should dare to be the giant of the Globe, he concluded.
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