• How the country can improve in the rating, by experts
Nigeria scored low in the 2022 Global Real Estate Transparency Index (GRETI) published by JLL and LaSalle Investment Management. Out of 156 cities in 94 countries and territories covered globally, Nigeria ranked 60th.

GRETI has been charting the evolution of real estate transparency around the world since 1999. Updated every two years, this 12th edition is based on a comprehensive survey of the availability and quality of performance benchmarks and market data. , government, regulatory and legal structures. environments, transaction processes and sustainability instruments.

The report revealed a widening transparency gap, as leading countries move further and set higher standards, from new regulations covering energy efficiency and emissions standards for buildings and climate risk reporting; to raise the level of anti-money laundering (AML) and beneficial ownership reporting.

It also provides deeper data on everything from office utilization rates to niche property types, supported by rapid technology adoption. Progress down the global rankings has been slow, with many jurisdictions stagnating or even regressing and will have to move faster to meet higher expectations.

The pressure has continued to mount for the real estate industry to rise to the challenge of decarbonization. Sustainability, and the race to net zero emissions, has become the new marker of transparency as investors, companies, governments and the public seek clear long-term goals, regulatory standards and metrics to measure their impact and environmental risk.

Sustainability has been the biggest driver of transparency improvements across all markets in GRETI 2022, with an increasing number of countries and cities setting mandatory energy efficiency and emissions standards for buildings and the more widespread adoption of building certifications. green and healthy. Leading markets are now beginning to require sustainability reporting from companies as well, and are collecting information at the public building level on energy efficiency and emissions.

However, sustainability measures remain among the least transparent globally and the regulatory landscape is fractured, with different standards being set at the municipal, state, regional and national levels, and an ever-increasing variety of credentials, benchmarks and sustainability standards, makes it increasingly difficult for investors and companies to navigate and understand their responsibilities.

Alignment of regulatory initiatives, harmonization of targets, and more standardized data will be needed to help improve transparency and enable companies to achieve their decarbonization goals.

Additionally, the drive to improve productivity and discover new revenue streams in the industry, as well as to respond to changes in the way we live and work after the COVID-19 pandemic, has spurred a rapid increase in the use of real estate technology platforms. The availability of new high-frequency data and more granular data is driving real estate transparency in ways that were unimaginable just a decade ago.

In some countries, the result is a deeper understanding of buildings and markets than ever before, from real-time occupancy or foot traffic tracking to data aggregators, gathering insights into asset class developments and even the use of buildings and cities. High-level digital twins for urban planning and forecasting.

The maturing real estate technology ecosystem has the potential to significantly boost transparency. However, the use of new technologies is highly varied between organizations and markets, the landscape of solutions and vendors is complex, and many technology standards are specific to individual companies or use cases.

The sub-Saharan Africa region has seen improvements that remain stagnant for the third consecutive survey, after limited progress in 2018 and 2020. Kenya launched Ardhisasa (a national land information system) and new real estate regulations.

Nigeria won in the last rating due to the establishment of the Lagos State Real Estate Regulatory Authority and the development of an online portal for planning applications.

LaSalle Investment Management Chief Executive Officer Mark Gabbay said: “We believe a strong global benchmark is an essential tool for the real estate industry. Transparency is the foundation that enables corporate occupants, investors, and lenders to operate and make decisions with confidence.

“We very much hope that our 2022 edition meets this challenge and provides a truly objective assessment of real estate transparency around the world, which in turn contributes to higher standards that ensure healthy real estate markets that work for all stakeholders.” .

Experts, however, believe that Nigeria can improve further in the ranking, if there are deliberate and concerted efforts to build a real estate data infrastructure, enthrone the cashless economy, streamline development control and approval processes, liberalize the issuance of property titles and establish a registry of titles, securitize real estate. real estate assets and the adoption of technology in real estate development.

NISH Affordable Housing Limited Managing Director Yemi Adelakun said a lack of essential data must have been responsible for Nigeria’s low ranking in the index. For example, Nigeria’s housing deficit figures have been difficult to determine or estimate over the years.

He said: “This is a huge challenge for the growing real estate sector in Nigeria. Data is vital for planning, implementation, monitoring, evaluation and reporting in all sectors, especially real estate.”

According to him, the prevailing cash economy makes tracking and tracing funds invested in real estate a daunting task, while huge dead capital is locked up in Nigerian real estate due to difficulties in obtaining title deeds and the consequent effect on the securitization of real estate assets.

“The inefficient process of development approvals and ineffective development control that results in the relentless collapse of buildings may also have been responsible for the low ranking,” Adelakun added.

The Vice President of the Nigerian Institution of Surveyors and Property Appraisers (NIESV), Lagos State Branch, Mr. Gbenga Ismail, said: “Our market is opaque. The Nigerian property market is neither clear nor coherent. That is why it is difficult for them to have confidence in our market”.

Ismail, who is the vice president of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, called for improving some of the efforts being made in land registration, the consent process, regulation and data capture.

He said: “Once there is consistency in market fundamentals, clarity and transparency will come naturally. The documentation, the standardization, the standardization and the efficiency of the processes, the integrity of the data, everything must be evident”.

Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN) President Aliyu Wamakko said there must be a change in housing provision and the government to focus on policy making.

According to Wamakko, there should be a government policy that all money budgeted for housing is channeled through the private sector. Such a policy, she said, would create jobs for youth, rejuvenate the economy and provide affordable housing.