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Real estate business in Nigeria plagued by quacks, fraudsters –Bayo Adeyemo, CEO

By y0ifcf (M)September 04, 2016, 08:47:07 AM
Real estate business in Nigeria plagued by quacks, fraudsters –Bayo Adeyemo, CEO, Bayo Adeyemo & Associates

— 4th September 2016

By Ayo Alonge

Bayo Adeyemo is the Chief Executive Officer, Bayo Adeyemo & Associates, a real estate firm with presence in Chicago, Canada, Ibadan, Lagos, Abuja, Kaduna and Port Harcourt.
In this interview, Adeyemo expresses deep concerns over the regulation of real estate business  in Nigeria to conform  with international best practices, while fielding other questions pertinent to his business as well as  the Nigerian business environment.

What motivated you into doing  business?

I had been in business as an undergraduate and right from my youth too. We organized shows for students and  brought popular musicians to school. So, business has always been part of me.

At what point  did your company commence operations?

This company is only one of the chains  I have. In 1996, I incorporated  Williams Properties and that birthed another, Bethel Realty Group in Chicago in 2004 and another  in 2009, in Canada. In 2010, Bayo Adeyemo & Associates was incorporated.

What do budding  realtors  need to know about establishing a mega real state business like yours?

Real estate business is a major business. I always tell people about it. It  involves taking care of people’s lives. God created everything and He gave some people the ability to manage  and that is what we are doing. Anybody that can invest in real estate has invested in his life, not just for now but for the future. You now commit such investment into the hands of someone. Hence, a real estate agency must  be  diligent otherwise  you destroy  lives of  clients  who trusted you with their investment. In the  real estate business, there are developers, who develop property for people as well as property managers. We are Estate Surveyors and that entails property evaluation for banks and  telecommunication firms and that can be for different purposes. Also, we do evaluation and feasibility appraisals for insurance companies and other financial institutions. We tell you the best area to invest your money in. What matters in property investment  is location. If the location is not right and you put your money there, you may lose out completely. Many years ago, if you came to this area where  our company’s head office is located, you could buy a plot of land for N1 million, but today, that same property goes for between N70 million  and N80 million . If you were advised  to invest then, today, you won’t have any cause to regret it but if someone had told you to buy some acres of land in Mowe, you cannot compare such investment  with one around here. So, that’s an important  point I think people need to note.

What’s the staff strength of  your firm?

We have over 60 people on our payroll and branches  in Chicago, Canada, Ibadan, Lagos, Abuja, Kaduna and Port Harcourt.  We don’t owe  staff salaries, because we work hard  and we’re solvent. Our workers are proud of  their jobs, because they know  it’s  their means  of livelihood.

Is there any room for  partnership with your  firm or you willing to employ more workers?

God won’t come down to help anybody. You and I  have to help each other. Government cannot help everybody. We have another company that we incorporated since 2010 but it’s about to commence operations. Due to peculiar obstacles  in  property evaluation, we’ve incorporated  Real Estate Multiple Services of Nigeria which would be a sort of data bank to enhance accurate  evaluation. This country  has to get  that right, otherwise it’s inimical  to business. For example, if you are willing to sell  a property for N100 million and the valuer  quoted N300 million and  the buyer cannot pay, that would be a problem. The firm  is developing like those we have in Europe and  especially in the United States.

Is your firm  cost effective and satiating client’s needs?

Yes it is. Before you get to the top in this country, you must have  sound connection. As it is now, government is looking for money and they must do that by harnessing every resource, especially small scale businesses. If you are not well connected financially, you may not be able to start any business in the country because of the way things are at the moment.

Could you elaborate on your  group of companies? How did it all start?

Initially, we incorporated a property firm and obtained  license to participate in  real estate transactions and  manage property. Hitherto, you needed to incorporate a firm with about N10,000 and you could even do business from the comfort of your home. You didn’t  need  huge capital to commence and like every other,  we needed the right  contacts. I think  all that matters in business is integrity, but there are quacks and fraudsters all over. Over the years, we’ve built a reputation on customer satisfaction and integrity. Even if you deposit trillions of naira into our accounts, it’ll be intact. Real estate, like any other business, is fraught with risks. If you need a property and I get you one  and eventually  you are not interested in it, at that moment, everything we have put into that transaction as a company goes down the drain.

What’s your vision for the business?

Yes, it is to build people. It’s not always about money, like I tell people. When you build people, you have built an empire; when you build an empire, you have built a legacy and that is everything. That is the essence of our company. To that effect, there is a web portal  we are also building for property evaluation.  Remember, I said God created this world and entrusted property into the hands of some people to manage it.

Do you plan  further expansion of your business?

Yes, there is always  room for that. When you develop your chain of businesses, people  naturally flow with your pattern.

What should Nigeria  do  to regulate the real estate  business given the problem of quacks and fraudsters in the business despite the efforts of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers?

That’s a very brilliant question. I have told you we have branches  in Canada and US. In these countries you cannot be a realtor  without  a license. That’s what we have been trying to imbibe  in this country. Best practices entail probity, prudence and shrewdness. Nigerian Institution  of  Estate Surveyors and Valuers  as well as government  are grappling with quacks and fraudsters in the business but as a practitioner, I’m  discussing  with the registrar on what to do. At present, nothing is being done to protect members of the public from being duped by fraudsters who pretend to secure a property for someone but end up defrauding him. We don’t do that in our firm.

Re: Real estate business in Nigeria plagued by quacks, fraudsters –Bayo Adeyemo, CEO

By y0ifcf (M)September 04, 2016, 08:49:17 AM
God won’t come down to help anybody. You and I  have to help each other. Government cannot help everybody. 

I see why you are successful in your business. Ride on bro!

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