Ghana’s real estate and construction industry has gone through peaks and troughs mirroring the economy’s boom and slowdown over the past decade. Thanks to robust economic and governmental programmes, the housing industry has witnessed a strong performance in high-end residential estates and a boom in the construction of industrial properties.
Additionally, the housing has moved away from being geographically confined to Greater Accra to being diversified within other regions and this has garnered attention. However, although there seems to be a significant growth over the past few years, there exists challenges to its continuous boom.
Rife with issues of land tenure, high interest rates, unfavourable land acquisition options, and the ever-increasing costs of building materials and utilities within the country, there is more to be done to achieve an ultimate transformation of the Ghanaian real estate industry. Here are seven(7) steps to achieving that much needed transformation.
Embracing Digital transformation
Across the global economy, there is a digital transformation taking place, and no industry can escape its reach or impact. Major players in the real estate sector have adopted modern technology and digitalization to improve customer experiences, boost sales and increase operations yet the Ghanaian housing sector is lagging in this. It is imperative that the housing sector keeps up with the changing trends in digital technology.
With the rise of high-end estate homes for the higher upper class, the majority middle and low income class of the country are cut off from affording such plush homes. The solution is to increase the supply of such affordable homes to the average Ghanaian which would in turn lower the prices of housing in the country. A simple case of demand and supply.
Till date, acquiring land in Ghana is never a smooth or an easy task. It is rife with constraints such as inadequate and blurry land policies, indiscipline which ultimately leads to fraud, frustrations and conflicts. In light of these problems, housing developers face problems acquiring land for developmental projects thus drawing the industry further back.
Access to financial services
The housing sector is capital intensive and as such requires the easy access to financial stimulants, loans or insurances to safeguard projects and ensure they are completed successfully. Many companies have gone under because they lack such access and this is an issue that needs to be corrected to significantly transform the housing sector.
Rising costs of materials
With the ever increasing and unstable prices of materials, labour and machinery in the construction industry, there exists the ultimate effect of higher building costs within the housing sector. Stability in rates of building raw materials would go a long way to improve the real estate industry in the country.
Lack of Supporting infrastructure
The absence of proper roads, water lines, electricity connections and drainage lines have restricted the activities of real estate developers within the country. Build too far away from a city centre and you are faced with all these problems. If the responsible agencies could make access to such infrastructure easy, the housing sector would see a large scale boom outside of the congested city places.
Poor management services
Generally, the management culture of Ghanaians has been labeled as poor and this is no different with housing facilities. Real estate is long term investment as as such it is important to maintain such facilities for longer lifespans to recoup initial investments and secure profits.
Ghana remains one of the most attractive countries for real estate and housing investments with no sign of slowing down. There are several signs of opportunities in infrastructure development and mass estate and housing projects and Ghana has the opportunity to take advantage of all such investments should it undergo its much-needed transformation.