The Punch Newspaper – 24th February, 2014 – Story by: Maureen Azuh
Stakeholders in the real estate industry have expressed optimism that the Eko Atlantic City project will provide new frontiers for professionals in the built environment.
At a business luncheon organized by the Lagos Branch of the Nigeria Institution of Estates Surveyors and Valuers, stakeholders said the city would most likely put pressure on the older cities to improve on their real estate and infrastructure planning, provision and management.
“In the case of the Eko Atalntic City and its effect on the surrounding neighbourhoods of Victoria Island and Ikoyi, we expect that the buildings already existing or being developed in these areas will have modern facilities in order to remain relevant in an increasingly competitive environment, “the Portfolio Executive, Corporate Real Estate Services, Broll Property Services Limited, Mr. Olayinka Omotosho, said.
Omotosho, who spoke on the topic: ‘New cities and its impact on the real estate market: A focus on the Eko Atlantic City’, said new cities generally cause a change in the local real estate supply and practice, while the supply of new properties would, in turn, cause a change in the price trends affecting occupancy rates.
According to him, real estate practice is also evolving as clients demand more technical skills from practitioners.
He said, “With the redefinition of the real estate markets by projects like the Eko Atlantic City, we expect that the real estate practice will expand and specializations will take place. Areas such as facilities management, risk management, real estate investment and financial analysis, to mention few, will be the toast of the day.
“In our practice already, post the global financial crisis, the real estate practice has witnessed a greater demand from our clients in the verification and explanation of supply. Valuations are more explicit than ever before and we have made adjustments to our valuation methods, which incorporate some financial standards as supported by the International Financial Reporting Standards.”
Omotosho said it was no longer enough for a real estate practitioner to have the basic knowledge of the practice without some knowledge of business management and financial analysis.
He said the Eko Atlantic City project, valued at $6bn on reclaimed land from the Atlantic Ocean, was envisioned to become the standard for urban areas all over Africa.
The Chairman, Estates Surveyors and Valuers Registration Board of Nigeria, Mr. William Odudu, said professionals in the real estate industry should be trained to position them for emerging trends.
“The learning process is one of the key points the board is keying into now because we feel we should move beyond where we are now. We need to train the trainers so that they can train our students better.” He said.
The president, NIESV, Mr. Emeka Eleh, urged estate surveyors and valuers to go back to the basics of the profession through learning.