Stop loosing money while investing in real estateOluwakemi Adeyemo
In the year 2012, I bought an insurance policy sold by one of the insurance company operating in Lagos, Nigeria.
Why did I buy the policy?
A better way to save ₦600,000 in 5 years and get some considerable interest than saving it in the bank. The end picture was so fantastic at the time.
After all its a noble idea to save some money right?
That was my good enough reason to buy the policy.
After 5 months, tragedy struck. I lost my job.
On losing my job, I contacted the agent to explain my situation and another tragedy hit. She was no longer in the employment of the company and could no longer be of service to me in that regard. I hung up the phone feeling helpless.
A few weeks later, I stumbled on another agent who had the intention to sell to me another policy. I shared my experience and he offered to help.
The agent instructed that I request in writing to place the policy on hold. He filled the letter and I felt that was all that I needed to do.
Then another reality hit me
- I had not read the policy terms and condition let alone process the terms to be able to ask salient questions.
- I did not even think about what to do should my source of income be taken away or changed and what my chances are in such circumstances.
- ‘I had not checked to be sure I can reach any other person in the organisation should the agent be out of reach.
In summary, I did not sit to count the cost and see if I could finish the “insurance policy project” before I started.
Your guess is as good as what happened. I lost the 5 months savings. I dissipated energy at the wrong time, trying to learn the way forward. Something I should have done at the beginning.
The Nigerian real estate market is such that throws at you hundreds of sales trap pitches. A sales pitch is not bad in itself.
What is bad is for you to get wrapped in the goodness of the pitch or product so much that you forget to the check if the goodness is right for you at the time.
Another thing is not having a clear picture of your investment goals and sitting down to count the cost of investing before starting.
Now don’t tell me you have blind faith to bite more than you can chew trusting that help will come to chew all the chunk. Let your faith be with understanding.
Below are tips that you must always have at the back of your mind to prevent loss in real estate investment
- Don’t fall for the goodness of a real estate sales pitch only.
- When it looks so good, take some time to think about the offer. If it’s something you desire, ask for an extension from the sales agent or company to revert on your decision.
- Think thorough about a structured payment real estate offer. Even when it’s good, it may not be the right plan for you at the time.
- Think about what you stand to lose should you not be able to meet up with a structured payment plan. Can you stomach the risk?
- Read the terms and conditions as much as you can till you understand. Ask for interpretation where necessary. Write out your questions on grey areas and email the company or its representative giving you an offer. Notice I said email. So you can have records.
- Check on the status of the company giving you an offer from time to time. To ensure they protect your investment pending when you fulfil all financial obligations.
- Ask and think of the best way to cut your losses should you not be able to continue paying and set up plans for recovery. Recovering part of your investment is much better than losing all.
- Finally, go over the other points again then begin to implement.