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Nigeria’s real estate industry and IT

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By Usman Oladimeji

Technology has a viable prospect in Nigeria's property market.

Technology continues to be a catalyst for change in all areas of business and industry, and the Real Estate market is no exception. Firms and stakeholders in the real estate sector are gradually leveraging emerging technologies to reform the industry. The alignment between property management and technology has given rise to the fast-growing global “Proptech” industry. Proptech, also known as “real tech,” means property technology and encompasses all the software and other various digital solutions and services utilized by real estate experts to optimize real estate activities.

Over the years, the global real estate industry has experienced significant progress. The global commercial real estate Investment market peaked at a record yearly amount of US $1.3 trillion in 2021, an increase of 55% from 2020 and 21% from 2019. With explosive development and complexity comes the need for a strong synergy between technology and real estate to effectively scale up the sector and aid in transcending the hurdles constraining the progress of the industry.

Digitization is poised to revolutionize the sector.

However, while shedding light on the prospects of the industry, Ugo Obi of Tilden Development Limited, a real estate firm in Lagos, noted that the Nigerian real estate industry is one of many to have embraced technology, especially in property evaluation, the development of online marketplaces, smart homes, prospecting, and marketing. Obi argues that despite the fact that automation adoption is still relatively low due to limited access to Broadband internet, digitization is poised to revolutionize the sector in the near future as he affirms the firm’s forefront participation.

He further highlighted some certain areas of tech deployment that are transforming the Nigerian Proptech industry, such as the real estate marketplace software, virtual property inspection, and smart home technology. The development of marketplace software and listing platforms, which ensure buyers and sellers can function more efficiently, is understood to be the most extensive adoption of technology in the Nigerian real estate industry. Prior to the advent of marketplaces, it was business as usual, where a person interested in renting, leasing, or buying real estate would have to meet with an agent in person to assess the property and then carry out the transaction.

These inspections virtually are more convenient than traditional approaches.

But nowadays , in the era of technology deployment in the industry, with access to online service and a few clicks on our devices, we can access thousands of homes, apartments, stores, and more with no further ado. These platforms also offer chat features which enable buyers and sellers to interact directly with each other leaving no room for third-party interference. Moreover, the Virtual Property Inspection was propelled by the dire need to inspect the market before engaging in transactions particularly during the global COVID-19 pandemic.

New inspections procedures, which began as a temporary fix during the global pandemic, has now transformed into an integral and interactive asset in the global real estate market. Inspection is at the top of the to-do list when negotiating, leasing, or buying a property. Virtual inspection is a more convenient and cheaper alternative than traditional approaches. It provides clients with an immersive experience of the features of a particular home or building without spending valuable time and money on a physical inspection.

The use of smart home technology is on the rise in Nigeria.

A virtual inspection, which is still a relatively new concept in the Nigerian market, has the potential to revolutionize the way consumers interact with businesses, strengthen trust in the system, and enhance the veracity of property information disseminated to the public. The use of smart home technology is on the rise in Nigeria, particularly in the country’s more affluent homes and businesses. The standard smart home or office has features like remote control, personalization, low energy consumption, adaptability, safety, and future-proofing. It stands to reason that a smart home will fetch a higher price than a conventional one from Investors. Integration of cutting-edge technology during the building process is a surefire way to increase a home’s resale price.


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