Daily Trust

Buyer apathy threatens Abuja new estates

A house on Galadima Road, off Alkali Road in Kaduna

…developers see positive prospects, say prices to rise soon

Many new private estates in Abuja face poor patronage due to perceived high cost, a Daily Trust survey in the sector has shown.

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The findings showed that the rate of sales of estate flats that has remained low despite flexible payment plans and juicy discount rates to attract potential buyers.

As such, some of the completed estates spread across the city have remained unoccupied with many more still under construction.

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Low and middle income earners in the capital city for whom these new estate homes are supposedly targeted, lack the financial capacity to pay for the houses. A lot of them prefer, instead, to acquire land in the outskirts of the city, which they consider cheaper.

But a cross section of marketers, promoters and estate developers interviewed said they are not disturbed by the current rate of  low sales.

The  survey carried out within the central part of the FCT metropolis, Lugbe, Apo, Kubwa and Karmo, showed that over 20 new estates have either been completed or are at various stages of completion in the last three years.

Urban Shelter Limited, a key player in Abuja’s real estate market, made up about 30 percent of the new residential developments in the FCT surveyed for this report.

One of the estates, Bellevue Residences, located in Life Camp, according to the company, is an “opportunity to respond to the socio-economic needs of the people by creating a privileged, safe and accessible residential development.” The price for a five bedroom villa at the residence goes for N150 million while a four bedroom town-home costs N70.5 million.

The price range for a home at its 30 apartment’s Lugbe estate begins from N9.5m. A two bedroom semi detached terrace apartment at its Sarauniya Estate Lugbe, which are at the building stage, cost N17.5m under a two-year payment plan.

A marketer of the estate said a subscriber who is unable to meet up with the two-year plan can opt for five-year plan but at a total cost of N22.75m.

Prices for a home  begin from N12m at The Brick City View, another member of the Brick City family in Kubwa.

The cost of an apartment at The Brick City Spring, an affordable luxury homes, situated in Jabi District begins from N9.5m, same as Brick City Valley estate along Kubwa-Zuba express way.

Prices start from N4m at its Kyami Estate, close to the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport.

Dantata Town, is another fast rising  estate developers in the FCT promoted  by Dantata Town Developers Limited, a real estate/construction firm. At the moment, it is marketing its newly developed Dantata Housing Estate Kubwa phase 1, 2 and 3 as well as the Dantata Mabushi Terrace Housing Estate in Mabushi Abuja in addition to those in Gwarimpa.

A two bedroom semi detached uncompleted apartment goes for N13.5m while the completed counterpart is N19.5m and an interested buyer is expected to make initial deposit of 30 per cent of the total cost, to spread the balance in instalmental payment.

Other ongoing estate developments surveyed included Brains and Hammers estates Apo 4-5 and Games Village, Flourish Estate Lugbe, Didi Estate Karmo, Park View Estate opposite Games Village, Kukwuaba where a  well finished, fully detached 5 bedroom luxury duplex goes for around N150m.

Some estates marketers, who spoke on the rate of subscription, however, said demand for estates is high because of the corresponding high demand for housing in Abuja due to the influx of people into the city.

“Many people have subscribed or have started buying,” said a representative of Urban Shelter Limited who markets Sarauniya Estate, Lugbe.

“In four months’ time the prices will even go higher because demand is high,” he said.

A marketer for Dantata Town Estate in Kubwa said there are now about 800 residents within all the phases in the estate.

However, some federal civil servants interviewed said the price of an average  estate home for workers on levels 8 to 10 was beyond their reach, and above the Federal Mortgage Bank Housing loan. But the developers blamed the high prices on cost of imported building materials as well as local ones.

“The cost of land, building materials and logistics is actually why the cost is high,” said a developer who doesn’t want to be named.

Some developers said they are upbeat that the market will pick up particularly as the 2019 general elections draw near.

“After the 2019 general elections, the expectations are that new members of the National Assembly would buy personal houses in Abuja and likewise their aides.

“There might be new set of ministers, MDs and DGs who may be living outside Abuja before their appointment and by their appointments may need new homes. If the purchase of new homes does not rise by then definitely rent will increase,” he said.