Residential building has been universally accepted as the second most important essential human need after food. Housing in all its ramifications is more than mere shelter since it embraces all the social services and utilities that go to make a community or neighbourhood liveable environment. Efficient housing design is becoming increasingly imperative in Nigerian urban centres; this is because housing is an essential and fundamental component of the overall land use activities in both rural and urban centres. Besides, it has a tremendous positive influence on the health, safety and welfare (economic and social) of residents of any community. A country where the per capital income is at its lowest point, a low-income environment explains the low take home pay, which does not permit savings. It follows that where the poor manages to feed and may be, cloth himself and members of his family, he may never be able to pay his rents or own a house of his own. The study is an attempt to uncover the various problems and prospects of residential properties management in Nigeria using kaduna North Local Government Area as a case study. Management of residential properties, not only covers rent collection, repairs and maintenance but also other aspects of good management.
1.1 Background to the study
Residential property management is emerging as a managerial science today (Kyle and Baird, 1995). It transcends beyond the role of rent collector (Li, 1997). Managing a residential property involves establishing goals, objectives and policies and implementation of strategies to achieve those goals and objectives. Singh (1994, 1996) posited that residential property management is an activity that seeks to control interests in property owner and particular purpose for which the property is held. Wong (1999) considers residential property management as the work carried out to manage and maintain the development including its facilities at the level that will retain or enhance the value of the residential property, create a safe, functional and conducive living environment for occupants, keep or restore every facility in efficient working order and in good state of repair, and project a good appearance or image for the development. Ismail (1996) regards residential property management responsibility as including all the necessary making to ensure the economic and physical vitality of residential property assets. Residential property management is also the management of personal property, equipment, tooling and physical capital assets that are acquired and used to build, repair and maintain the residential property. Property management involves the processes, systems and manpower required to manage the life cycle of all public residential property as defined above including acquisition, control, accountability, responsibility, maintenance, utilization and disposition (Njoku, 2006). According to Ebie (2012), duties involved in residential property management generally will include a minimum of these basic primary tasks
- The full and proper screening or testing of a tenants/applicant’s credit, criminal history, rental history and ability to pay.
- Lease contracting or accepting rent using legal documents approved for the area in which the property is located.
- Mitigation and remediation regarding any maintenance issues, generally within a budget, with prior or conveyed consent via a Limited Power of Attorney legally agreed to by the property owner.
There are many facets to this residential property management, including managing the accounts and finances of the real estate/residential properties, and participating in or initiating litigation with tenants, contractors and insurance agencies. Litigation is at times considered a separate function, set aside for trained attorneys. Although a person will be responsible for this in his/her job description, there may be an attorney working under a property manager. Special attention is given to landlord/tenant law and most commonly evictions, non-payment, harassment, reduction of pre-arranged services, and public nuisance are legal subjects that gain the most amount of attention from residential property managers. Therefore, it is a necessity that a public residential property manager be current with applicable municipal, county, state and Federal Fair Housing laws and practices. In advanced countries, residential property management, like facility management, is increasingly facilitated by computer-aided facility management (CAFM).
Landed property ownership is regarded as a great success and achievement; and this mentality has great influence on landed property itself. After the construction of buildings, most property owners tend not to care for it again as all that matters to them is that they have a property which they can call their own. This is because most Nigerians lack maintenance culture. However, the effective management of properties is very important, due to its nature and the capital involved in its construction. Properly managed properties will not only maximize the income realized from the property where the property is built for investment purpose, but will also ensure that the property is in a good physical and structural state for it to continue performing the purpose for which it was built.
Government owned public corporations are of different categories. Some are statutory corporations which merely render definite services not essentially for any economy sense. It could be seen that most of these corporations undertake commercial and industrial ventures and need to be run on commercial ways. It is the reason why they are separated from the immediate control of the civil services and take away also from the private sector. These types of corporation are mid-way between the private business whose main interest is to make profit for its owners and the government department which can hardly run commercial business on account of strict public control the form of civil service procedures. However, they are usually attached to relevant government departments for the purpose of government control and legislative accountability.
Public corporations are set up by Acts of parliament edicts or decrees and are arms of the government. The advantage they have over a department of government is that they are not being bound by civil servant red tape they can often take major decision by themselves within the scope of their powers subject to certain safeguards in the national interest.
However, managers of residential properties in Nigeria are faced with various kinds of problems ranging from uncooperative attitude from workers, poor maintenance and environmental condition, security and other basic infrastructures. Some managers in Nigeria have been able to cope with some of these challenges but the researcher will provide an overview about the problem and prospects of residential properties management focusing on Kaduna North Local Government Area.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
According to Bello (2008), residential property is more than a mere shelter; it includes all facilities within and around it, embracing a bundle of services which entails both product and process. Management of residential building embraces in all ramifications the maintenance and development process, be it economic, social, and physical). In fact, management of these properties has been subject of focus by researcher in recent times based on the cumbersome nature of the process.
Multi-tenanted low-income residential properties impose a lot of problems in its management. There is a great struggle to meet up with the investment objectives, the cost of preserving the building and satisfying the tenants. The problem of poor management of residential properties is a global phenomenon and the severity of the problem differs from one nation to another. However, the researcher is seeking to examine the problems and prospects of management of residential property in Kaduna North Local Government Area.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The following are the objectives of this study:
- To examine the problems of residential properties management in Kaduna North Local Government Area.
- To analyze the prospects of residential properties management in Kaduna North Local Government Area.
- To identify the solution to the problems of residential properties management in Kaduna North Local Government Area.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
- What are the problems of residential properties management in Kaduna North Local Government Area?
- What are the prospects of residential properties management in Kaduna North Local Government Area?
- To what extent have the housing policies and programmes of the government helped to reduce housing problems of the state?
- What is the solution to the problems of residential properties management in Kaduna North Local Government Area?
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The property management and maintenance policies if any seem to be ineffective, as the government have failed in their primary assignment of solving the perennial housing problems. This work will be carried out with the aim that its outcome will be of great value to several interest groups: the academia, investors and government at all levels.
The outcome of this study will educate the general public on the problems and prospects of managing residential properties in Nigeria emphasizing on its proper management and some other management challenges which will form a guide for estate managers in decision making.
It will equally benefit the investors; hence the research will provide a good insight into the viability or otherwise of residential property investments in Kaduna metropolis. This research will also serve as a resource base to other scholars and researchers interested in carrying out further research in this field subsequently, if applied will go to an extent to provide new explanation to the topic.
1.6 SCOPE/LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
The scope of this study on the problems and prospects of residential properties management in Kaduna North Local Government Area will cover all the basic problems faced by managers in effective maintenance of both the infrastructure and finances generated on residential property.
In the cause of the study, the researcher encounters some limitations which limited the scope of the study;
Time constraint: The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
Inadequate Materials: Scarcity of material is also another hindrance. The researcher finds it difficult to long hands in several required material which could contribute immensely to the success of this research work.
Financial constraint: Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
1.7 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Management: the process of dealing with or controlling things or people.
Residential: designed for people to live in.
Property: a thing or things belonging to someone; possessions collectively.
Prospects: The possibility or likelihood of some future event occurring.
1.8 OVERVIEW OF THE STUDY
This research work is presented in five (5) chapters in accordance with the standard presentation of research work. Chapter one contains the introduction which include; background of the study, statement of the problem, aim and objectives of study, research questions, significance of study, scope of study and overview of the study. Chapter two deals with review of related literature. Chapter three dwelt on research methodology which include; brief description of the study area, research design, sources of data, population of the study, sample size and sampling technique, instrument of data collection, validity of instrument, reliability of instrument and method of data presentation and analysis. Chapter four consists of data presentation and analysis while chapter five is the summary of findings, recommendations and conclusion.