Kigali landlords need to be more innovative

Editor,

RE: “Rwanda’s economy is in the right trajectory, but do landlords see it?” (The New Times, April 26).

Thank you Ms. Campbell-Rodrigues for a well thought-out analysis of the local real estate market. There certainly is an oversupply of high-end residential properties and commercial space and a dearth of low-middle income housing.

This is not accidental. The developers of the posh properties see (on paper) a higher return on investment on these rather than on low cost building. Lending institutions have a hand in this situation. Their risk management departments failed to do their homework and now they have un-serviced loans on their books.

I don’t know how serious the problem is (myself I tend to believe that we are not on the edge of the abyss) but I can assure you that consumers are feeling it with interest rates in the 17-20% range.

I think there may be other creative ways to address this situation like breaking up empty spaces in commercial buildings and remodel them into affordable housing units, co-sharing rent in the Mac mansion, etc.

I would welcome more of your thoughts on this as you have shown insight a candor which will, I am sure, enlighten us.

Baingana

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True. Like all markets, there is a salient element of the greater fool.

And yes, it’s a credit cycle all markets ride out, both short and long term credit cycles.

So depending on which point in the credit cycle, peak or trough, gains and/or losses can be made by those of a more venal bent. Fortunately/unfortunately...this is the way of the world.

Ggwanga Mujje

Rwanda Decides