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Diamond in the rough

Have you seen rough diamond before the cutting and polishing? It is looks like glass at first glance, no…Make that a couple of glances. Before it goes through polish and cutting process, you could pick up a piece of diamond and toss it away thinking it is cheap glass.

One of the world’s largest diamonds weighing 3,106 carats was discovered at the Premier Mine in Pretoria, South Africa on Jan. 25, 1905 and christened the “Cullinan” after the owner of the Mine. The Cullinan was cut into several stones and the largest stone is called the Star of Africa or Cullinan 1 and mounted in the British Sovereign’s Royal Scepter while the Cullinan II sits in the Imperial State Crown worn by the Queen of England.

Cullinan Diamond 1 & 2

My point is to highlight how easy it is to judge a book by its cover or more succinctly how easy it is to overlook the value of estate in its raw state. The raw state of real estate in this case would be its virgin state. Most virgin lands are waterlogged, beset with flora and fauna…I still remember the game hunted on one of my former company’s schemes, best antelope/lean meat I have ever eaten in a long time. Apart from the above mentioned issues, it may even be inaccessible like most parts of Lekki, V.G.C and Ikota in 1999/2001. Still, only those with the gift of foresight and business acumen can look past those issues and make a strike by way of investment. The best way of harnessing huge returns on your real estate investment is to buy property in its virgin state, when it looks like nothing, when there is little or no electricity in the area, when the indigenes still live in the area because trust me, as the area develops, the indigenes will sell their lands to the men in suits armed with briefcases and where will that leave you my reader? I met a developer in Osapa London who told me that he bought his plots of land some time ago at N25M per plot. N25M is no child’s play but then again, a detached house in Osapa London now if available (because the whole place is fully developed into an upper class area) costs N75-100M.

The interesting thing he said to me was that, there were indigenes still living in Osapa London at the time and let’s not forget how water logged the whole area was. “The whole place looked nothing like this when I bought my plots Nneka” he said. “I even wondered if I was doing the right thing”. “Now all I do is add value to the area where I develop my property by paving the road, constructing the street drainage and so on. I and some other developers also developing their properties some houses away come together to do all these and even if they had said no, I would have done it myself because it increases the value of my properties and in turn their prices”. Right before me, one of the detached houses he built was sold for N65M. You do the math, a plot of land was bought for N25M, two detached houses was built within (you need a brilliant architect and engineer to carry out this project if you want to make a killing in property investment/business) and sold for N65M each…is your head spinning? Good. So my friends, Ibeju-Lekki may look like nothing for now but this is the best time to invest. This is the best time to buy up as many plots as you can and then sit back to rake in your ROIs in the nearest future. I have a client who declined to purchase serviced plots with Amen Estate, his reason? The same reason that people with a sense of immediacy suffer from, he saw no reason to buy, it is too far, nothing could ever bring him to that area. His friend bought four plots, he didn’t and today he has bought property from even further away from where he was taken to initially…this life, real estate in Lagos leaves you stumped sometimes.

Have you bought your slices of paradise in the Lagos New Town? Do give us the opportunity to build and manage your real estate portfolio.


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