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Business News of Friday, 1 June 2018

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Why real estate developers sell their properties in dollars – Estate Agent explains

The real estate industry in Ghana continues to boom as new residential facilities spring up in several parts of the country with impressive improvement in infrastructure. Owning a property is considered one of the biggest investments one could ever make in life and it is mostly considered a feat in a person’s life if they own one property or the other.

The first thing that comes to mind when buying or renting a house or land however, is the issue of affordability. Successive governments have over the years attempted to activate affordable housing schemes to provide shelter for citizens as part of their development agenda.

Housing units which are being described as affordable are going for approximately US$29,000 for a two-bedroom unit and US$57,000 for a three-bedroom. These units meant for low and middle-income public, civil servants and security service personnel, are clearly out of their range, meaning lower income earners within the country may never benefit from affordable housing project.

What baffles most Ghanaians is why real estate developers sell their properties in dollars and not cedis.

Speaking at the 2018 edition of the meQasa Property Expo, Director of Sales at Estatepedia, Richard Osafo on the topic "How to spot a home with investor potential" explained why estate developers choose to sell their properties in US dollars and not our local currency.

According to him, the growth of the economy affects the prices of properties which is why estate developers choose to deal in dollars.

Explaining it to investors at the launch, he said “Ideally, the dollar has some sort of weight as against the cedi. Now the reason why some of us deal in dollars is because of few things. First of all, if we list it in dollars, we don’t lose out on the actual principal we invested in the product. The dollar keeps on increasing so it helps make some sought of mark-up”.

He further added that although it is not fair on their part to list their properties in dollars, there are no restrictions imposed on them as to how far they can go.

“To be honest with you, it is not right for us to be listing properties in USD but can you force the developer? You can’t because there are no rules and regulations restricting property sellers as to how far they could go”, he said.

2018 meQasa Property Expo was launched today, 1st June and is a three-day exhibition event which starts at 9 am and ends at 5 pm each day.

The event brought together under one umbrella, the finest real estate developers, mortgage specialists and housing experts in the country to exhibit their properties, network and educate the public on taking informed decisions about real estate.