Page 1

VUNABAKA

THE SOUTH PACIFIC’S MOST EXCLUSIVE ENCLAVE

FIJI REAL ESTATE SURVEY Statistics, Suggestions & Submissions

CHINESE INVESTORS

FREE

An Emerging Property Force

DIGITAL HOUSE HUNT

Buyers Force Industry To Modernise FEATURED AGENTS ISSUE 1 DECEMBER 2016

KHELVIN R E A LTO R S

LIMITED Licenced Real Estate Agent No.0096

People And Property


BACKGROUND We head a team of trained Sales Consultants operating out of a very central office and are backed by the Australian Head Office and a constant source of referrals working to introduce more buyers to your property. We believe in doing whatever is required to earn the right to be your agent and we confidently let our actions speak for themselves.

Director : Sam Mani

You get the results you expect because we focus on your individual needs. Of course there are all those other essentials such as our strong market knowledge, our ‘‘never give up’’ attitude and unswerving commitment to the highest ethics in real estate. We are proud to be different and know we stand out from the crowd. Our professional real estate services are based on a culture of offering only the best. We want to achieve outstanding results because we want to win for you. We offer market leading initiatives such as a proven and highly successful marketing plan based on what we know works. We also listen, watch and pro-actively research emerging technologies and consumer trends. When we are satisfied they work we use them to benefit you.

Shakuntla Mani Director

Kunal Kumar Sales Consultant

+ (679) 6700036 + (679) 9997340 http://http://www.paradiserealtorsfiji.com.au

sales@paradiserealtorsfiji.com.au


KHELVIN R E A LTO R S

LIMITED

People And Property

Licenced Real Estate Agent No.0096

LAUTOKA

LAUTOKA S I HA NO UK V ILLE

3 bedroom with master bedroom

3 bedroom house

FOR SALE $320,000

FOR SALE $250,000

SAKOOR PLACE

VOMO STREET

3

3

LAUTOKA SIHANOUK V I LLE

LAUTOKA S I HA NO UK V ILLE

TEIDAMU

FIELD 40

3 bedroom house with excellent sea view

FOR SALE $450,000

FOR SALE $320,000

3

LAUTOKA SIHANOUK V I LLE

LAUTOKA S I HA NO UK V ILLE

2 bedroom house

4 bedroom with master bedroom

FOR SALE $160,000

FOR SALE $175,000

VOMO STREET

RILEY PLACE

2

4

LAUTOKA SIHANOUK V I LLE

LAUTOKA S I HA NO UK V ILLE

3 bedroom upstairs master bedroom 2 bedroom downstairs

3 bedroom concrete house. well fenced hot and cold more than a 1/4 acre housing lease close to all amenities

GOLF LINK

GOLF LINK

FOR SALE $570,000

FOR SALE $400,000

3

Vipul Sharma Real Estate Agent Lautoka Branch

+ 679 8330230

Vyas Sharma Founder / CEO KHELVIN REALTORS

+ 679 9975493

realtorskhelvin@gmail.com

Vipin Sharma Real Estate Agent Suva Branch

+ 679 9447189


4

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

TABLE OF CONTENTS

10 VUNABAKA

24 GROWING DEMAND FOR

THE SOUTH PACIFIC’S MOST EXCLUSIVE ENCLAVE

AFFORDABLE HOUSES

14 RISING CHINESE INVESTORS

26 THE DIGITAL HOUSE HUNT

AN EMERGING PROPERTY FORCE

17 FIJI HOUSING AUTHORITY LAND DEVELOPER, LANDLORD & FINANCIER

FULL STEAM AHEAD FOR DEVELOPMENT

31 FIJI’S LOW INSURANCE RATE

44 AUBERGE BEACH VILLAS

THE IMPORTANCE OF INSURING YOUR PROPERTY

34 GARDEN & WATERWORLD BRINGS NEW LIFE TO HOME IMPROVEMENT

CHALLENGES, GROWTH & THE WAY FORWARD

41 DENARAU WATERS

BUYERS FORCE INDUSTRY TO MODERNISE

DEMANDS FOR GREATER TRANSPARENCY, STRONGER REGULATION & MORE HONESTY

LICENSING BOARD

FIJI’S FINEST ADDRESS

CALLS FOR PROPERTIES BELOW $300,000

20 AN INDUSTRY ON THE MOVE

22 REAL ESTATE AGENTS

39 NAISOSO ISLAND

NANUKU LAUNCHES PRIVATE RESIDENCIES

52 FIJI REAL ESTATE SURVEY

2016 STATISTICS, SUGGESTIONS & SUBMISSIONS


Fiji

+ 679 6721666

Martintar Queens Road, Nadi, Western

sales.fiji@ljhooker.com

REGIONAL POWERHOUSE AGENCY EXPANDS TO FIJI

The way we do business is personal

EIGHTYEIGHT years after its establishment in Australia, LJ Hooker remains a real estate powerhouse that has infiltrated key Asia Pacific markets that now include Fiji. As a regional hub and tropical real estate hotbed, the Fiji property market has provided an enabling environment as the newest real estate addition to the franchise network, and a rising crop of agents and salespersons under the guidance of seasoned Melbourne realtor, Principal, Charan (CJ) Shergill.In mid2015, LJ Hooker established its first local office along Nadi’s bustling Martintar strip, the center of diverse cosmopolitan and commercial outlets and the tourist town’s rising crop of largescale, beachside resort and residential developments.

A new outlet opened soon after for the demanding Lautoka market in 2016 while another has been planned for Suva. This rapid progression has pegged Fiji alongside LJ Hooker’s other global portfolios; New Zealand, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea. All agents undergo LJ Hooker’s internal training process, with emphasis on providing superior service delivery & feedback and bringing a new level of professionalism to the industry,a bid that anticipates the continual rise and recruitment of highly competent real estate personnel.

A licensed Melbourne estate agent with over 10 years of industry experience, his diverse management career includes banking, credit control and financial and management consultancy in the Pacific, Australia. “We are looking at growing our base in Fiji, and soon will expand to Suva. This will mean a growth in our team, and we are offering equal employment opportunities for aspiring agents, looking for hard working and enthusiastic men and women who are looking to get into real estate.” He remains keen on sharing his industry wisdom by helping to harness Fiji’s rising multitude of agents under the LJ Hooker brand

To ensure upskill, training and education for agents remain an ongoing aspect of development, with Shergill’s own Martintar Queens Road, Nadi, Western background boasting a plethora of operational expertise.

Fiji

Fiji

Martintar Queens Road, Nadi, Western

+ 679 6721666 sales.fiji@ljhooker.com + 679 6721666

sales.fiji@ljhooker.com

The way we do business is personal The way we do business is personal


Perspective View Prospective tenants are invited to register their interest to lease space in the new building at the corner of Marine Drive and Nuqa Place in Lautoka. The property is located in an area which is fast growing with exceptional sea view. The development is for two floors. The total area available for leasing on the Ground Floor is 807m2 and 984m2 on the First Floor. Whilst the spaces have been designed for variety of possible tenancies; specific tenant requirements can also be accommodated as required. The property will be available early 2017 for lease.

Ground Floor Layout Plan SCALE 1:200

The building has dedicated car parking space in addition to street car parking spaces. Provisions are in place for emergency power and water supply. The publice access around the building is generous. To register your interest, please contact: TM

LongRun (Fiji) Abhimanu Narayan Roofing Rollformers & Building Products

M: (+679) 999 8731 Ph: (+679) 666 1133 abhimanun@reddydimond.com.fj

First Floor Layout Plan SCALE 1:200

TM

LongRun (Fiji) Roofing Rollformers & Building Products www.longrun.com.fj

CYCLONIC TESTED By

James Cook University Australia

666 1133 3373660 sales@longrun.com.fj

13-15 Royal Palm Road , Navutu P.O.Box 4643, Lautoka Fiji Islands

Lakeba St Samabula Suva Fiji Islands


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

PROPERTY.COM.FJ ABOUT US SINCE launching in February 2014, Property.com.fj has grown to become a trusted resource in the Fiji property market. Property.com.fj is not a real estate agency, but in fact an online classified advertising platform for all licensed real estate agents to promote their listings. So if you’ve hired a real estate agent to sell your property, make sure they advertise on Property.com.fj’s website – otherwise thousands of people won’t be able to find your property which means you might not get the best price. Property.com.fj does not charge any commission and agents can upload listings for free or they can choose to pay for premium listings. The purpose of Property.com.fj is to help people by making the search for property simple, efficient and stress free. Whether you’re just beginning your property journey or have years of experience, Property.com.fj is the number one place for people to come together to search, compare and learn more about Fijian property.

With an average of over 30,000 website visitors each month, and reaching more than 20,000 people each day through social media, it is the leading property resource in Fiji. Property.com.fj has helped countless visitors find a home to rent or buy, and likewise, agents have been able to easily connect with tenants and investors. Whether you are looking for a new house, a new flat, an investment property with a great rental return or researching the market before purchasing your first home, Property. com.fj is here to help you make better decisions for taking your next step. Property.com.fj is an advertising platform for all licensed real estate agents, so for any questions regarding a specific property, we recommend contacting agents. Aside from new listings each day, there is consistent industry News to keep visitors informed of market developments, making the website the leading real estate portal in Fiji

FOR ADVERTISING ENQUIRIES Mr. Sunil Prasad +679 931 8508 sunil@property.com.fj

7


8

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

REAL ESTATE WORKSHOP W E S T E R N D I V I S I O N A G E N T S G AT H E R I N N A D I

REALB DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON, MATT MEYERS ADDRESSES AGENTS AT THE FIRST NATIONAL REAL ESTATE WORKSHOP IN JULY.

AGENTS & SALESPERSONS FROM THE WESTERN DIVISION AT THE FIRST NATIONAL REAL ESTATE WORKSHOP HOSTED BY THE REALB AT THE TANOA INTERNATIONAL HOTEL.

MINISTER FOR INDUSTRY, LANDS, TOURISM AND TRADE, FAIYAZ KOYA, OPENS

MINISTER FOR INDUSTRY,

THE FIRST REALB NATIONAL

LANDS, TOURISM AND TRADE,

WORKSHOP IN

FAIYAZ KOYA WITH REALB

NADI.

CHAIRPERSON, DR ABDUL HASSAN AND REALB MEMBER, HEMANT KUMAR AT THE WORKSHOP.


Its safe to say, it has been an outing year with impressive results. Thank you to all my clients and friends for your support, looking forward to working with you all in 2017 once again and help you achieve all your property goals refer to www.rhooker.com.fj

A SELECTION OF PROPERTIES SOLD AND OR MARKETED BY R HOOKER IN 2016

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

D L SO

MEET THE TEAM OF R HOOKER

ROHIT CHAND PRINCIPAL 999-9000

KRITI KISHORE REALTOR 999-3801

NITIN PRASAD REALTOR 999-9642

NILESHIKA ADMIN 999-0706

SWASTIKA ADMIN 999-9152

JOSEPH REALTOR 999-2227

GREG FISHER REALTOR 999-2777


10

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

VUNABAKA

T H E S O U T H PA C I F I C ’ S M O S T E X C L U S I V E E N C L AV E OVER the past three years, a $350 million integrated resort development has quietly risen from the shores of the turquoise bay of Malolo, a few miles off the Nadi coast and at the heart of Fiji’s most iconic islands, the Mamanucas.

the development’s various residential lots. The main marina, which remains the newest in the South Pacific, has been built to world-class standards. It is tucked directly behind the sandy white beach of the Vunabaka shoreline, with convenient water frontage and private jetties for residents who desire easy access to boating equipment.

Despite its vast magnitude and beautiful natural setting on the Southwest corner of Malolo Lailai, Vunabaka has managed to mostly stay under-the-radar in Fiji while the project developers have diligently poured heart and soul into creating the ultimate tropical haven within one of the most exclusive enclaves of the South Pacific.

Shops, eateries, bars, a fitness center, tennis courts, a spa and two full service marinas will complement the unlimited access to every conceivable water activity offered to residents, including world-class surf, kite-surfing, diving, fishing and boating.

The development’s name is an ode to the spread of beautiful raintrees (‘baka’ in vernacular Fijian) and rainforest that permeate the property. Vunabaka will be home to authenticallyinspired private luxury lodgings and resort-style villas that are woven into rocky headlands, pristine beaches and lush rainforests, creating an intimate community set at the peak of tropical opulence. In the developer’s words, “we see Vunabaka as catering to all generations of our families; husband and wife on a romantic getaway, a guy’s trip, a girl’s trip, or a great experience for all the family to enjoy together.”

MARINA Beachside jungle has been transformed into 120 acres of waterfront, ocean, marina and hilltop sites, with the island’s natural micro-climate providing significantly more daylight hours than found on the mainland. Steady development has already seen the completion of the first two stages of civil works, and construction of 12 villas on

RESIDENCES & LAND LOTS Despite a low-key sales campaign, an established network of associates has already seen many astute investors join the developers on their journey and purchase home sites in the development. Once built, each of the development’s residential villas offers stunning vistas, from the perch of Malolo’s soft contoured hills to the soothing serenity of the seaside dwellings, to the convenience of marina frontage. Buyers will be inspired by visions of their dream homes, as they prepare to take residence in one of the world’s most beautiful, eco-conscious communities, run entirely on networked solar power. At the helm of these stunning residencies is Richard Priest, an acclaimed New Zealand architect. Priest’s design prowess unifies the splendour of traditional Fijian designs with low environmental impact building, in order to create organically elegant interiors with spacious lounging that emphasise the surrounding environs.

11


12

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

Native hardwood, exquisite furnishing and modern appliances provide ultimate convenience and ambience, and open floor plans offer glimpses of the sea, sky and rainforest. Exteriors are wrapped in expansive wooden decking, private pools, fire-pits and intimate dining areas, to provide ultimate outdoor relaxation for all residents. All 70 luxury residences within the Vunabaka development will average between 3 and 5-bedrooms, and are constructed on 1/3 acre - 2 acre lots. Simple pavilions linked by sheltered walkways and pristine landscaping emphasise outdoor spaces, and reflect the project’s objective to complement the natural environment. Recognizing the property’s natural surroundings as a precious resource, the commitment of developers to protecting and persevering wildlife is reflected in extensive landscaping with indigenous plant species, maintenance of a largescale nurseries and gardens, and the undertaking of a reforestation program.

Each residential lot is offered with a 99year native lease. These are undoubtedly some of the finest pieces of land in Fiji, with successful land sales already speaking for themselves.

measured, and to minimizing its carbon footprint and environmental impact, seamlessly complement Vunabaka’s environmentally-conscious approach to development.

SIX SENSES LUXURY RESORT

By actively managing energy, water, waste, biodiversity and chemical usage, Six Senses and Vunabaka pursue a shared passion for creating a community focused on long-term sustainability for generations to come. In combination with Six Senses’ decadent spa and wellness treatments, this mutual passion will allow both residents and visitors to reconnect with themselves and the world around them, creating lasting experiences and memorable rejuvenation.

While there are many facets to this incredible development, perhaps most anticipated is the new Six Senses Fiji, a 5-star luxury hotel that will be the first of the luxury hotel franchise’s properties in the South Pacific. The alluring design and style of the Six Senses chain takes centre stage at Vunabaka, and will oversee all residential and resort management. Along its golden stretch of 650-metre beachfront, Six Senses Fiji will provide 26 spacious pool bures, ranging in size from 110 to 150 sqm, as well as 60 luxury residences, varying in size from approximately 600 to 1,000 sqm of interior and exterior space. Six Senses’ notable commitment to ensuring that all developments, designs and daily operations are responsibly

A treetop yoga platform, state-of-the-art fitness gym, recreational clubhouse and Kids Centre will also be on offer when Six Senses Resort opens its doors to guests in late 2017.


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6

FOREIGN INVESTMENT Fiji’s plethora of islands and precincts attract many overseas investors, but rarely has there been a project to match the scale, vision and follow-through of Vunabaka. Many projects are announced in Fiji however sadly not all projects are completed and with this in mind, Vunabaka developers have shown largescale foreign investment in Fiji is possible with the right attitude. Against an unfamiliar bureaucratic system, these impassioned developers have proved that, by streamlining their ideals into a transparent and feasible plan and sustaining a respectful relationship with the island and its landowners, it is indeed possible to pursue a massive, multi-faceted dream such as Vunabaka. This dream will indubitably change the lives of many, and cement Vunabaka’s emerging status as one of the world’s most beautiful oceanic recreational communities

Visit: vunabaka.com

MAGAZINE

13


14

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

RISING CHINESE INVESTORS AN EMERGING PROPERTY FORCE

WITH its trademark saffron dancing in the wind, the groundbreaking launch of the Wyndham Silkroad Ark Resort project near Komave village at the end of August 2016 marked one of the largest and most high-profile property developments ever carried out on Fijian soil. Since the beginning of the twenty-first century, Fiji has witnessed an influx of Chinese investors, a group who now constitute the fastest growing segment of global property buyers, and are the source of over two per cent of all Australian real estate purchases. In addition to our ever-increasing rate of Chinese visitors, Fiji has also witnessed a significant rise in Chinese investment and trade, due to the development of significant bilateral economic relations. Figures provided by the Trade Ministry confirm that the cost of Fijian imports from China increased from $210 million in 2010 to $623 million in 2014, and the value of Fijian export sales to China surged from $5 million to $37 million in 2014. With their market share estimated at 41 per cent, Chinese investors claimed the majority of total investment projects in Fiji in 2015. A similar stake has been recorded for the first six months of 2016, with 45 per cent of development projects registered with Investment Fiji having originated from China. The majority of these investments have been in the services and wholesale retail industries. However, despite the increase of Chinese investments in Fiji in 2015, Minister of Industry, Trade, Tourism, Lands &

Mineral Resources Faiyaz Koya noted that Chinese-implemented projects only represented 18 per cent of the total value of current projects in Fiji.

centre around long-term investments in tourism, real estate, handicraft and furniture manufacturing, amongst others.

Regardless, there has been an undeniable growth in the confidence of Chinese investors in the Fijian economy over the past few years. This has rendered China the largest source of foreign direct investment in Fiji at present, and business-savvy Chinese investors, amidst their rising affluence, have clearly set the pace of the international buying spree.

Exactly a year prior to the seminar, MOUs totalling some $690 million were signed for 21 Chinese investment properties, amongst which stand many high-profile hotel and resort projects, such as the China City Resort that is currently being developed on the Lomolomo beachside by the Peng Tao Real Estate Company.

Efforts to further advance trade and investment growth between the two countries gave rise to the inaugural FijiChina Business Exchange Summit and Trade & Investment Seminar in mid-2016. As outlined by the seminar’s Chinese delegation head, Chen Yushu, the interests of their 21 investors mainly

Although it is inarguably a focal point of many such developers, this surge in Chinese investment is certainly not confined to Fiji. According to CBRE, the world’s largest commercial real estate services firm, Chinese investors put $16.1 billion into overseas real estate in the first half of 2016, which is more than double the amount recorded in the same period last year.


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

“Fiji has certainly seen an increase of Chinese investors, and the potential exists for more opportunities,” noted Arif Khan, principal of Bayshore Real Estate. “There are several project investments, including hotel developments. We have also experienced that road contractors, such as China Railway, are looking at local investment opportunities after the completion of major projects such as the Nabouwalu Highway.” Khan also notes that strong bilateral economic ties between Fiji and China have been an impetus for continued investment. The consistent growth of the Fijian economy continues to increase investor confidence, including business-savvy Chinese developers, who feel reassured by the increase in political stability and implementation of sophisticated government policies in what they perceive as the future hub of the Pacific. “In certain areas, land prices are very attractive as well as affordable. The benefit to our economy is that idle land needs creative investors who are able to develop sustainable projects. However, landowners should consider equity stakes of up 20 per cent in some of these projects, to create an ongoing cash flow. “On the flip side, the Chinese investment has created a very competitive real-estate market. Some of the local investors will face stern competition, and some homebuyers will get priced out due to the competitive market environment. The Federal Reserve will be keeping tabs on the rising real estate prices that have been spurred by low interest rates, high liquidity and foreign investment dollars.”

Forbes has attributed the increasing Chinese preference for overseas real estate to a widespread desire to diversify investments out of mainland China, and beyond tough governmental restrictions. Office buildings, hotels, infrastructure, leased business, and other fixed assets are playing a prominent role in overseas investment portfolios, as well as representing a means to protect entrepreneurs from economic and political volatility in their domestic markets and core industries. And with islands emerging as the new status symbol of wealthy Chinese, Fiji seems an obvious choice for such entrepreneurs. The Pacific region has been thoroughly explored in recent times for attractive offerings, having even captured the attention of the China Island Owners Association, whose members assembled for a lucrative tour of Fiji, Tuvalu and Tahiti in mid- 2015 to ‘shop around’ for islands. For the majority of Chinese real estate buyers who flock to Fiji, though, the most sought-after properties remain sites for hotels, offices and investment units, in addition to the acquisition of residential homes. “The drawback is that there is strong competition for locals in the move up market. For example, homes in Simla, Lautoka has seen an appreciation of well over 20 per cent since the beginning of the year,” explained Khan. Bayshore has noticed growing interest in hotel and integrated development sites in recent times, and anticipates major projects being initiated in places like Lomolomo beach, between Nadi and Lautoka, in the near future. “At present, the investments areas are Suva, Navua, Sigatoka, Nadi and

Lautoka, to name a few…. there is significant investment in the North, with mining projects as well as other investments in Savusavu, while there are Chinese investors who have made formidable investment in farming as well.” Indeed, the aforementioned Wyndham Silkroad Ark Hotel represents a $500 million investment; spread over 165 acres, with 360 guestrooms and 1000seat convention centre. This project is commissioned by the Guangdong Silkroad Ark Investment Group, a large and highly lucrative firm whose portfolio also includes the Angel Star City in Suva, the South Pacific Commodities Trade Centre, and a photography base. In the words of its general manager, Li Haolin, “Fiji has vast territory, a small population, pure environment and abundant resources, [and] is a wonderful place for immigration, vacation and studying abroad. With the booming development of tourism and the hotel industry, we, and our owners, have great confidence of the project. Fiji’s investment potential will have an enormous development and China’s enterprises that are going to be developed in Fiji, have vast prospects in front of them”

15


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

17

FIJI HOUSING AUTHORITY LAND DEVELOPER, LANDLORD & FINANCIER For most people,purchasing a property is about putting down roots and starting a family. Making the decision to purchase a property is an important endeavour and a huge investment. For those purchasing their property for the first time and are unacquainted with the processes involved, this could be a very overwhelming endeavour. This is where Housing Authority comes in.

HOUSING Authority has established itself as a premier provider of low cost housing accommodation to the people of Fiji. With a vision of “Helping Fijians Own Affordable Homes,� the Authority is committed to serving its target market, low to middle income earners. This poses a question of how does Housing Authority achieve this? The Authority is a unique organisation in that it is classified as a financial institution but is also somewhat of a misnomer as compared to other financial institution.This is due to its threefold forte; it is a land developer, landlord and financier. Having access to decent and affordable housing is now a right under the Constitution,and as such the Authority is tasked with the enormous responsibility of providing low cost and affordable accommodation for the people of Fiji. Housing Authority accomplishes this through the acquisition of land which it develops into affordable housing subdivisions. A large portion of land comes from land acquired from TLTB.

Housing Authority is a one-stop-shop, and is the only financial institution that provides you with land and will also provide financing to assist you in building your first home.This ensures that land is not only purchased but plans are put in place to build straight after settlement. This is indeed an important gateway to home ownership. The Authority is not a bank and therefore is unable to offer low cost funding to compete with the banks, but despite this it strives to offer competitive loan package for low income customersa feat made possible by the Reserve Bank of Fiji allowing a loan at a lower rate for HA to then on-lend to its low income customers who earn below $25,000 per annum. Housing Authority is a financier with a big social conscience, so not only do we ensure that people can access affordable homes through affordable home loan packages, but we ensure in built house and health insurance covers to protect the customers and their property. The Housing Assistance Grant (HAG) which is a government grant used by Housing Authority assists its customers. Thus far it has been able to assist 172 families in 2014 and 2015 in accessing the HAG. For those that meet the criterion for the HAG $5,000 is given

for house purchase Whilst, $10,000 is for house construction. For 2016, we are assisting 150 families in the same way with our submission for $1.5m of the grant (till Oct 2016). This will further increase as approximately 50 more families are being considered for construction loans when this edition goes to print. Housing Authority also ensures that our customers are able to retain their homes during times of financial hardships by allowing them time to clear their arrears and considering them for another scheme known as the Loan Rehabilitation Scheme funded by Government with a strict qualifying criteria.

NEW DEVELOPMENTS Housing Authority anticipates producing at least 1,070 new residential lots and constructing 50 single units at our various prescribed subdivisions annually. Its recent developments, in particular those in the Central Division, are high in demand due to its close proximity to the popular urban centres. In early 2017, about 400 lots will go on sale in Matavolivoli (Nadi), with 100 lots in Koroisalusalu (Tavua) and another 200 lots will become available in a new subdivision in Nepani. In 2018, about 100 lots will be ready at Volivoli (Sigatoka), over 400 in Davuilevu and about 400 in Tavakubu, Lautoka, while over 800 lots will be developed at Veikoba by 2019.

BUYING Housing Authority’s developments are in high demand and as such those who are interested in any of the upcoming developments should register their interest with the Authority. Interested members of the public are advised to fill and complete a Demand


18

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

Survey Form and submit to a Housing Authority branch near them. Alongside the form, they are to submit their birth/ marriage certificate, salary slip and FNPF Housing Eligibility.

age to retirement as the repayments are spread over a longer time frame making the repayments more affordable as opposed to paying for land only, which is calculated over only a 10 year period.

This enables the Authority to categorize them in the database accordingly.And once the development is completed and the land is ready for allocation, the price of the land is matched with the customer’s eligibility to ensure that low priced lots are allocated only to those who are eligible for them. Checks are also made with the Titles Office to guarantee that customers are indeed first home owners.

Housing Authority commitment to home ownership is not only limited to the provision of loans, it also provides free house plans and assistance during the construction process with the works assessment team inspecting every stage of construction to monitor the progress of the work being carried out. It also ensures that homes are constructed to meet the standards set in the National Building Code.

BUILDING

In addition, the team determines the cost of building by checking the draft plan prior to approval and during construction. Upon completion, the Authority goes one step further and ensures that the building is certified by engineers who provide the new property

owner with an engineer’s certificate to confirm that it is cyclone rated and the house insurance that covers the property becomes valid.

ECONOMY

Housing Authority encourages customers to build immediately after the land loan is settled as this allows the loans to be amalgamated which means that the customer has a longer repayment period depending on the customers

Shop 6 R.B Centerpoint Complex L.B.Estate Nasinu

In the last three years, Housing Authority has contributed $37.5 million in house construction loans with $35 million in the 2015-2016 periods alone, which aside from helping Fijians own their own homes, has created more employment, spurred building activities, sales, real estate value impact and has contributed to income for local businesses, town councils, architects and engineers. Housing Authority works hard to ensure that our customers not only have access to affordable home loans, but also ensuring that they are able to retain their homes in times of financial hardship

Visit: housing.com.fj

Buying? Selling? Renting? Let Us Lead You The Way Home At Hemants Real Estate Our Team Of Experienced Agents Are Here To Help You Find The Property Of Your Dreams, Or Secure You The Best Price For Your Home. Contact Us To See How We Can Help You Achieve Your Property Goals.

' Based In Nasinu'

CALL NOW (P)3395721 (M)9917652, 9383945

LA0151 (E) hemantsrealestate@gmail.com nishchayk@gmail.com Nishchay Kumar Sales Consultant

Hemant Kumar Director


20

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

AN INDUSTRY ON THE MOVE D E M A N D S F O R G R E AT E R T R A N S PA R E N C Y, S T R O N G E R R E G U L AT I O N & M O R E H O N E S T Y PURCHASING a home is a lifelong goal of many people around the world. The trick to making this goal a reality is finding the perfect estate agent to facilitate the achievement of this milestone, which obviously begs the question of what it is exactly that makes a good real estate agent. What are the ingredients that set realtors apart. How can these qualities be emulated, and where can a buyer or vendor locate this rare breed? Some attribute agent success to traits such as articulation, industry knowledge, and the far more practical ability to merely answer their phones. Many others who put forward ideas in property.com.fj’s Fiji Real Estate Survey 2016 called for characteristics such as honesty, promptness, clear communication, and the possession of a large inventory of appropriately-priced homes and land lots. As is often the case, those vendors who had previously had negative experiences or encounters with real estate agents tended to be the most critical of the industry.

purchasing property, a process that is often plagued by delays, deadlines, dead (telephone) lines and lengthy and tiresome approval timeframes from various governmental departments.

While contributions and suggestions were aplenty, generally speaking, respondents desire a faster, more accessible, and more trustworthy industry. The latter request obviously points to the negative (and often undeserving) stigma that is frequently attached to real estate agents.

Respondents also suggested introducing training programs for real estate agents, to bring industry standards to a more professional level in terms of knowledge, home presentation and ethics, as well as increased consultation processes, enforcement of OHS-compliancy for all listed homes, standardized rental rates, more encompassing regulations, lower stamp duty taxes for foreigners, and the procurement of more skilled labourers to improve the standard of finished apartments.

Respondents of the property.com.fj real estate survey suggested the introduction of helpful booklets to simplify

Interestingly, calls were made by several survey respondents for amendments to the Land Sales Act.

Some respondents think that the legislation should be made “more investor-friendly”, although this wasn’t generally prioritized as an urgent area for change in the local real estate industry. Calls for regulatory change mostly centred around new buildings, and – as per one respondent – regulations mandating the apportionment of a per centage of overall building costs to landscaping and finishing beautification touches should be introduced. Additionally, regulations relating to landlord and tenancy agreements (a change that is already underway), reasonable and concise standardized pricing schemes (such as Household Income versus Property Value), and communication and financing through banks should also be focal points of industry reform.


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

Suggestions also covered factors including the quality of construction materials, customer service and postsale processes, as well as the conduct of real estate agents and fraudulent realtor activity. Responses overwhelmingly indicated a widespread desire for a decrease to housing prices, to make properties more affordable and attuned to local wages, as well as for standardized lease agreements. Concerns about property prices were further reflected by a majority of respondents who believed that standardized real estate contracts would render the industry safer and easier to understand, in addition to regulated agent commissions. Overall, survey results show a clear general consensus that strengthening industry regulations and implementing standardized pricing for properties on both sale and for rent are necessary and vital for industry improvement.

The creation of formal association of realtors is currently underway, in order to bring about greater representation, and several relevant pieces of legislation are presently being reviewed and revised. Additionally, strong backing for the Real Estate Agents Licensing Board is resulting in more stringent measures being taken against rogue practitioners, and a more concise schema of industry developments and regulations is gradually forming. Most survey respondents reside in Fiji, followed by Australia, New Zealand and the United States amongst others. Considering the previous lack of market research on local real estate as an industry, this Fiji Real Estate Survey – the third consecutive one performed by property.com.fj - is certainly a groundbreaking means of providing effective and representative insight into concerns, preferences and necessary areas of improvement

Which source of information do you find most helpful when searching for properties?

Internet 38% Newspaper 11% Family & Friends 9% Other 22% Bank or Lawyer 1% Real Estate Agents 8% Facebook & Social Media 10%

Which sources of information did you use during your most recent search for ahome?

More concerning is the widespread belief held by many respondents that local property prices are beyond the reach of ordinary working Fijians. Several initiatives have been incepted in recent times to remedy this by encouraging local property ownership, such as the government-funded ‘First Home Owners Scheme’ that is designed to provide grants to couples who earn below $50,000 in combined annual income. Real estate is in itself a flourishing industry in Fiji, and one that is still finding its footing within the local scene in several regards.

Internet 43% Real Estate Agents 19% Newspapers 27% Magazines 2% Open House & Inspections 9%

21


22

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

REAL ESTATE AGENTS LICENSING BOARD C H A L L E N G E S , G R O W T H & T H E W AY F O R W A R D AS a centrally-located South Pacific hub consisting of 333 islands, the word ‘Fiji’ naturally conjures an image of tropical bounty in most minds, complete with pristine beaches and lush rainforest. This reputation has long attracted the attention of retirees, former residents, celebrities and other investors from around in the world, while the country has progressed through several decades of economic booms and upheavals, frequent political turmoil, and a once minimally-regulated real estate industry. Traditionally, local real estate businesses typically manifested as small, familyrun organizations that could list and sell almost any property without much by way of an advertising campaign. This concept of minimal agency was widespread during the industry’s infancy in the 1970s, resulting in a view that connecting buyers to sellers in Fiji was relatively easy. These days, the broad array of agencies and realty houses that have cropped up, coupled with a growing tendency to advertise listings beyond the confines of office walls, public notice boards and newspaper classified pages, has crafted a constantly developing and highly competitive marketplace in the industry. Despite the growing sophistication and complexity of this marketplace, real estate licensing laws were only enacted in Fiji a decade ago. All real estate agents now operate under the regulatory authority of the Fijian Government’s statutory watchdog, the Real Estate Agents Licensing Board (REALB). REALB is chaired by Dr Abdul Hassan,

Land Management lecturer at the University of the South Pacific (USP), along with Registrar, lawyer Virisila Tuimanu. The Board has undertaken rigorous review processes and implemented stringent measures in the past year, with a view to solidifying its work. This has included legislative reviews, license grants and cancellations, and organizing the country’s first series of national real estate workshops. As Tuimanu shares, some of the major challenges faced by the Board include commissions, agency agreements and the introduction of a Code of Ethics, all of which are currently being addressed. “There must be some guidelines in place for the amount of commission to be paid to agents, as some are excessive and it is usually too late when respective clients realise it,” she explained. “For agency agreements, there is the need to have standard and uniform provisions in the agreements signed by agents and respective vendors and clients, and a Code of Ethics, which is currently being drafted, and there is a much greater need to have this in place in order to regulate activities of agents and branch managers and salespersons.” The Board has also been looking into a review of current laws governing the real estate industry, namely the Real Estate Agents Act (2006) and its subsidiary legislation. This will necessarily involve close consultations with its line Ministry, the Ministry of Industry, Trade & Tourism, and most importantly, industry stakeholders. Further, in order to improve the Act’s implementation, several regulations will be developed in the coming years, including standardized agency agreements, a Code of Ethics and Professional Client Care, a

prescribed examination for salespersons, as well as stronger provisions relating to commission. In the future, it is likely that the Board will also consider pricing control and mandatory valuations for local properties before they are listed, as a response to widespread concerns about overpriced properties from Fijian residents, as highlighted in Property.com.fj’s recent Fiji Real Estate Survey 2016. In the context of its vital regulatory role in the industry, the Board has observed that more agents are becoming aware of the important roles that they play, and the obligation that they have to strictly abide by industry procedures and guidelines. This observation is no doubt stimulated, at least in part, by the increased degree of public oversight for agents in legal practise, as evidenced in late September by the cancellation of 14 real estate agent licenses, the expiry of 23 licenses, and withdrawal of six. An MOU signed with the Fiji Revenue & Customs Authority in late September also signified the enhancement of efforts to exchange vital information between these two statutory agencies. Under this document, the FRCA is now able to access information relating to the purchase and sale of properties, as well as data about the exact number of registered real estate agents in the country. As FRCA CEO Visvanth Das noted, the MOU ensures that they have access to real time data about the number of properties sold each month, and whether these sales are properly accounted for in tax collection for those months.


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

Honorable Faiyaz Koya (center), Minister for Industry, Tourism, Trade, Lands & Mineral Resources with members and staff of the Real Estate Agents Licensing Board.

“In most countries, the real estate sector has been branded as a sector used to facilitate tax fraud and money laundering,” he said.“This includes generating and investing unreported income. In Fiji, there have been few cases where a large amount of cash has been used to purchase properties. The sources of these funds are also unknown.” Recently announced government plans to extend several town boundaries are also expected to affect property prices, although, as Tuimanu pointed out, this largely depends on market dynamics. As a regulating agency, if an increase in property prices also creates the need for more licensed agents, the Board will ensure that all requirements are met by applicants prior to authorising the licensing of any new agents. “Nadi’s declaration as a City in 2017 will have an effect on real estate, and REALB anticipates the increased need for having more licensed agents and possibly the need to grant permits for applicants who would need to carry out short term real estate activities too. However, we reiterate that local requirements under the law and those set out by the Board must be satisfied in order to issue a real estate agent license.”

As was also noted by Dr Hassan, real estate is the single largest component of wealth in a society. It thus not only plays a key role in shaping the economic conditions of families and people, but can highly impact on a community’s ability to finance all important public works and expenses. By virtue of their role as industry regulators, REALB is adamant about continuing to develop and administer a more vibrant real estate industry in Fiji, as well as sustaining an environment of professionalism, expertise, integrity and quality within all industry dealings Visit: realb.com.fj

REALB

REAL ESTATE AGENTS LICENCING BOARD

23


24

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

GROWING DEMAND FOR AFFORDABLE HOUSES CALLS FOR PROPERTIES BELOW $300,000 WITH our idyllic beaches, tropical climate, and recent economic growth, it’s not hard to see why Fiji is fast becoming a magnet for international property developers. In recent years, buyers from Australia, New Zealand, the USA and China have reportedly been snapping up properties across the country. Predictably, this surge in property investment has lead to rapidly increasing property prices. “Land prices here have doubled in two years,” according to Michael Lucas, the New Zealand developer of Vunabaka, an island resort on Malolo, off the coral coast. As a result, the property industry has recently been plagued by concerns of housing affordability, or, as results of the 2016 property.com.fj Real Estate Survey indicate- unaffordability. A majority (52 per cent) of survey respondents claimed that housing in Fiji is moderately or very unaffordable, while only 48 per cent found that it was either moderately affordable or affordable. Unsurprisingly, calls for decreases to housing prices were echoed by respondents, and general sentiments indicated that many feel as if only very wealthy individuals and overseas investors could afford local property prices. “Prices of properties are sky-rocketing, [and] locals are highly affected. This has to be regulated,” lamented one respondent.

In fact, the margin that most respondents (37 per cent) indicated they were willing to spend on a property was between $100,000 and $300,000. This was followed by 35 per cent who stated they were looking to spend less than $100,000, and 17 per cent who opted for property priced between $300,000$500,000. “House and land prices are constantly increasing at an exponential rate, whereas the salar[ies] of locals have barely moved from the last 10 years,” complained another respondent. In fact, survey respondents rated lowly for property ownership, with only 29 per cent owning property, most of whom have a bank mortgage. Survey results show that a majority (41 per cent) of Fijians reside in rental properties by themselves or with people they know, while only 37 per cent live in their own home. The remaining 22 per cent either stay with their parents, or reside in temporary accommodation, or a shared household, typically with people they previously did not know, and contributed to rent payments. Low property ownership levels are further reflected in the low number of survey respondents who have house insurance. The majority (58 per cent) of respondents are uninsured, while the remaining 42 per cent stated that they do have house insurance. Most of the insured home owners (61 per cent) insured with providers other than TOWER Insurance, Sun Insurance, Dominion and AON.Destruction of an estimated 40,000 homes during TC Winston in February, for which the Fijian government was required to

disperse some $88 million in support for uninsured home-owners, has also spurred more incentive for insurance agencies to develop more products and packages suited to the socio-economic needs of residents outside major municipalities. Housing regulation has been a key demand from survey respondents, with many calling for an effective price regulation scheme attuned to local income, and a stop to overvaluation of properties. Much of these concerns will likely be addressed through the adoption of international valuation standards by the Institute of Valuations and Estate Management of Fiji and the formulation of a Land Valuation Act to regulate valuation practices and the property market, as announced by Lands Minister Faiyaz Koya in late October


Easy As...

%.a

p Fixed for 6 months

4.5

%

p.a

1 year fixed

6.25 Variable

%

p.a

3 months waiver on House and Content Insurance premium Term - Up to 30 years Fixed interest rollover options Credit decision within 48 hours No monthly service fee

bsp.com.fj/EasyHome Terms & Conditions Apply.

Customer Care 132 888

CC@bsp.com.fj


26

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

THE DIGITAL HOUSE HUNT BUYERS FORCE INDUSTRY TO MODERNISE IN the digital age,real estate buyers prefer online above anything else. About half the country’s population are active Internet users and this rate only continues to grow, thus tuning thousands into the now-limitless platforms that exist for real estate listings and contact addresses. As data collected by the 2016 Property. com.fj Real Estate Survey clearly shows, the internet continues to surpass other mediums as the leading source of information for home hunters and vendors. Fijian property buyers now overwhelmingly look online first in their house hunting endeavours, and the majority (43 per cent) of respondents polled in the survey stated that they relied primarily on the internet during their most recent search for a home. In addition to home buyers’ shifting reliance from newspapers to the internet, the transition to digital property listings has also necessitated a degree of IT savviness for agents who want to ensure that their properties are noticed. No longer is the online platform an optional medium for agents and vendors, but instead a vital tool for reaching a broader spectrum of potential buyers, both around the country and overseas. Even more importantly, this connection can be made from the comfort of their own homes or offices, without the hassle of booking appointments and making phone calls. Only 27 per cent of survey respondents stated that they relied on newspapers for house hunting, and 19 per cent opted to contract the services of real estate

agents, clearly reflecting the diminishing reliance on these traditionally dominant forms of property research. Open homes and inspections were the chosen means of only 9 per cent of respondents, while the minimum (2 per cent) turned primarily to property magazines during their most recent search for a home. Though the majority of survey respondents resided in Fiji, residents of Australia, New Zealand and the United States, amongst others, were also polled. Overseas respondents likely account for any reliance on real estate magazines, which were basically non-existent in Fiji prior to this publication.Not only do the survey findings clearly indicate that the future of real estate research is digital, but they also oblige homeowners to ensure that their agents are listing their properties online, so as to be seen by digital house hunters. “Digital marketing is not only a rapidly growing force in the current real estate marketing field, it is set to be the future

of marketing, and it seems likely that digital media will soon replace more traditional forms altogether,” noted LJ Hooker sales executive, Shama Hasbi Haseen. As she highlighted, online marketing’s expediency is more cost-friendly than traditional, offline marketing methods, transforming a marketing message to consumers for the merest fraction of the cost of a television ad or print campaign and potentially reach a wider audience. “Personally, Facebook has been my major marketing platform over my 5- year career. It greatly helps me to connect with prospective home buyers, rental seekers and foster business relationships. With daily updates on Facebook, I have been able to attract a huge number of clients and the number has been increasing constantly.“Similarly, investment into websites is equally important. Currently property.com.fj yields great business for us here at LJ Hooker,” Haseen emphasised.


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

“The facts are that digital methods of communication and marketing are faster, more versatile, practical and streamlined, so it is perhaps unsurprising that once the technology became available we began quickly moving into the digital age.�

Online listings for various types of properties are also a cheaper alternative to print media and distribution, providing even more incentive for a shift to the digital property market. Similar conclusions are reflected by the correlating poll of which source of information was found to be most helpful to buyers when searching for properties. which also ranked the Internet at the top. A leading 38 per cent of survey respondents found the Internet to be their most helpful resource when searching for property, followed by the 22 per cent who indicated other means. Newspapers drew only 11 per cent, while family and friends accounted for nine per cent of results. The range of effective digital marketing strategies available to vendors today encompasses paid searches, videos,

mobile apps and social channels, all of which can be used to grab the attention of home hunters. This variety of platforms, coupled with the internet’s takeover of traditional research mediums, provides even more reason for vendors and agents to ensure that their listings are marketed online, for maximum viewing. The easy navigation and expediency of online platforms continue to revolutionize the property business, commanding agents to invest in sophisticated websites, and, at the very least, have social media accounts to show for. Like other agents, Haseen knows too well the value of digital marketing as a thriving tool over other marketing mediums.

27


28

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

TITUS NARAYAN THE VISION OF A VETERAN TITUS Narayan is a name synonymous with Fiji real estate. His agency, Titus Real Estate, was one of the first to be officially registered, and he was the first member appointed to the industry board upon regulation, which he fought vigorously for. “I resigned from the board on my own accord due to extreme difficulties in obtaining my overseas visas from various embassies because at that time we did not have the elected government- and it was not only me, but my family and siblings were also penalized at that time,” he shared.“I have served under various chairman of the board and at that time all chairpersons were not familiar with the Act and the real estate business. These chairpersons have learnt a lot from me and one of them ended up authorizing me to sell her house, which I successfully did.”Business knowledge, he highlighted, is vital alongside qualifications and vast experience to operate successfully. “During my early days of the business and now, I have seen a lot of people opting to do real estate business. However, about 90 per cent of these people did not survive in the business due to migration and dishonesty. This trend continues, even now. Narayan noted that laws were needed to protect agents from cheating customers who deprive them of earnings and which at times, ended up in court with substantial legal fees and prolonged cases.“Apart from this, all real estate matters under dispute should be handled by the Magistrate Court or High Court, depending on the nature

of claims because our magistrates and judges are highly qualified and competent to understand the claims and weigh both sides of the story evenly before concluding the judgment. Apart from these two high offices, it should not be referred to any other organization because of lack of simple knowledge, understanding and competency.

He said laws should be amended to lessen restrictions on foreigners wanting to Freehold or Crown Lease residential properties in municipal boundaries. “They should be permitted to buy at least one freehold/crown lease residential property in town or city in accordance with the current valuation to avoid escalating the property prices.”

He holds similar reservations on the qualifying experience (three years) for agents to open their own agencies, and believes they should have at least a decade of industry experience before obtaining a license to operate a real estate business, as a measure of maturity and competency.“A refresher course should be introduced and made compulsory for young and new lawyers and their law clerks in handling real estate transactions to further their knowledge in conveyancing as far as real estate transaction are concerned.”

He also lauded the Minister for Industry, Lands, Trade & Tourism, Faiyaz Koya, for vital improvements at the Lands Ministry that have quickened the pace of property inspections and consent to either rent or sell amongst others.

For more expediency, he also hopes for a 3-fold increase to valuers and engineers on bank and insurance company panels, with an applicable scale rate to counter high charges and allow competitive prices for consumers. Additionally, he says expiry dates are unnecessary for engineer’s certificates for cyclone cover, and validity should last if properties are intact and well maintained, unless they undergo extensive extension.Narayan believes a freeze on rental increment for commercial properties should be immediately effected for at least three years, saying rising prices of commercial properties have strained ground-floor and office tenants by not considering their monthly turnover for income.

Catering to a wide range of customers, properties sold have ranged from five to seven-figure prices, including single level and 7-storey buildings. “This is evident that we care for all class of people and commercial entities, including diplomats, embassies, government ministers, prime ministers and the former late president of Fiji, whose property I sold a couple of years back.” He said beginners should start investing in properties now for their children’s future, particularly if they are renting residential properties, as such rental charges could pay off their own mortgages.Conversant, competent, and reliable, the passionate realtor has no qualms about sharing his knowledge on best practices and challenges of Fiji’s thriving real estate sector


TITUS

Buying, Selling or Renting Contact the well established name in real estate, Titus.

We’ve been servicing the property needs of Fijians & foreign investors for over 30 years across residential, commercial & tourism real estate in all regions around the country.

We Also Help Buyers To: - Arrange Finance - Arrange Property Valuation

- Organise Engineers Certificates - Rental Property Management

For More Information:

Visit our website www.titusrealestate.com.fj or contact us directly

Licensed Agent No.01 P: M: F: E:

330 1171 / 330 2812 992 1555 / 9921556 / 5969 330 4330 titus@connect.com.fj

2 Ellery Street 1st Floor Narsey Building Suva


Experience you can rely on We’ve been helping Fijians protect the things they value for more than 140 years

Contact us Suva

5496 or 5497

Nadi

5498

info@towerinsurance.com.fj www.towerinsurance.com.fj


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

FIJI’S LOW INSURANCE RATE T H E I M P O R TA N C E O F I N S U R I N G Y O U R P R O P E R T Y IT’S no secret that Fijians are facing a widespread shortage of housing, which has often been compounded by popular notions that property is unaffordable and overpriced. The flow-on effects of these issues are varied, not to mention economically detrimental – most relevantly, low property ownership rates and a consequentially low uptake of property insurance. This rate currently sits at only 12 per cent of Fiji’s adult population – a figure so low that the shortage in insurance interest even resulted in the launch of a consolidated 6-week campaign in October to raise local awareness and understanding of this industry. This campaign is bolstered by a goal of raising this paltry figure to 25 per cent insurance cover by 2020. The fact that most Fijians lack any form of insurance cover to assist with unforeseen financial burdens arising from accidents or disasters has also urged the Insurance Council of Fiji to consider a review of cyclone certification requirements for locals. This follows the devastating homelessness of an estimated 40,000 Fijians that was caused by Tropical Cyclone in February 2016, and the palpable lack of insured properties that was highlighted in the devastating aftermath. As the Fijian Government dispersed some $88 million to cover damage faced by uninsured homeowners in affected areas, calls were made by the Head of Government to strengthen regulatory provisions to protect locals from future crises and for a reform of the insurance industry, which has often been viewed

as luxury service only available to those wealthy enough to cover the cost. “There has been too great a focus by our insurers to offer coverage to urban communities and tourismrelated infrastructure, and our rural and maritime communities are not being given the options for insurance coverage that they deserve,” Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama stated at the launch of the government’s postWinston ‘Homes for Help’ initiative. For their part, however, people aren’t only skipping insurance because they think it’s too costly, but also due to a lack of personal awareness, as indicated by the results of the 2015 National Financial Services Demand Side Survey Report. The top three reasons for not taking out insurance coverage, per survey respondents, were: a belief that they did not need coverage; a lack of understanding of what insurance is or how it works; and a lack of financial means to cover insurance costs.

As highlighted by Reserve Bank of Fiji Governor, Barry Whiteside, the first two reasons are likely attributed to a lack of understanding or knowledge, factors that can hopefully be changed through increased public awareness and education about insurance brought by the 6-week campaign. However, addressing the latter factor is slightly more complex. Insurance companies have been urged to provide packages more suitable to the socioeconomic needs of locals, and part of the financial inclusion segment of the 6-week awareness campaign concentrated on providing insurance services to marginalized and low-income communities. The Insurance Council of Fiji’s new chairperson, Sarah Jane Wilde acknowledged that the national diagnostic exercise helped to understand the formal usage of certain basic financial services such as insurance, which is higher in urban areas (17 per cent) compared to rural areas (7 per cent).

31


32

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

“It also showed that it was substantially higher amongst those in the top 2 income quintiles than among adults in the bottom 3 income quintiles,” she said. Fiji’s Housing Authority has also weighed in on issues arising from restrictive insurance policies, suggesting that the limited number of local insurance providers leaves little room for competitors to negotiate lower premiums and thus affordable policies tailored to low-income target markets. As pointed out by the HA at a property insurance seminar, customers sometimes can’t afford further increases in their repayments after natural disasters and mandatory engineering certification financially strain its low-income target market, for which a substantial proportion cannot upgrade certification after every seven years, which potentially disqualifies them from obtaining proper cyclone cover. This is an area the ICF is considering. “We are currently reviewing this process with the Fiji Institute of Engineers to

understand if we can make it both easier and more affordable to get the engineer certification,” Wilde confirmed. The ICF has also noted that country challenges include an inconsistent implementation and policing of the National Building Code, as well as the constant threat of tropical cyclones for at least half of each year. “Insurance penetration is an issue; only 18,000 out of the 184,000 households in Fiji are insured… less than 10 per cent of households are insured,” as pointed out by Lolesh Sharma, Chairman of the Insurance Council during a property insurance seminar in August. According to Sharma, a holistic approach to insurance reform would necessarily include the introduction of entry level products to accustom the uninsured to the benefits of insurance at an affordable cost. Such a product would be administered as a collaborative project of seven local insurance companies, employers, the Fiji Revenue & Customs Authority and United Nations Capital Development Fund, supported by

the Pacific Financial Inclusion Program. This inclusive insurance bundled product would charge $50 for $10,000 worth of cover, including $3000 for fire and earthquakes, $3000 for personal accidents, $1000 for health insurance and $3000 for life and funeral insurance. However, the green light for such an offer has not yet been given. On the part of insurance agents, the Consumer Council of Fiji has expressed its desire of tougher monitoring and the introduction of conduct standards, as well as more industry accessibility, expressing a desire to see a broad range of property insurance products in the market to offer a wide array of choices to consumers. According to industry regulators RBF’s Annual Insurance Report 2015, which was published prior to TC Winston, the combined gross premium income of the Fijian insurance industry declined by 2.9 per cent to $290.3 million in 2015, after five years of consecutive growth. Life insurance policies recorded the largest reduction in gross premiums, falling by 3.1 per cent to $123.9 million, which


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

was attributed to the declining trend in premiums received. However, total assets of the Fijian insurance industry grew by 7.8 per cent to $1.5 billion due to accumulated assets as per the 2015 Report, with the life insurance industry’s total assets increasing by $84.8 million to an all-time high of $1.1 billion. This growth is likely due to rising investments in government securities, land and buildings, as well as shares in related persons. The question remains as to why many Fijians continue to solely rely on State assistance and Fiji National Provident Fund savings despite the availability of insurance policies to cushion unforeseen circumstances and as survey numbers prove, awareness is a looming issue. “When asked why people don’t take up insurance 40 per cent said they didn’t need it, 30 per cent said the price was prohibitive and 25 per cent said they don’t know what it is,” Wilde said of the National Demand Survey.

“It is likely that the 40 per cent that said they didn’t need it don’t understand the benefits of insurance. What this means is that 65 per cent don’t have insurance due to lack of awareness about insurance, either in understanding the benefits that it provides or what it actually is.” This information, Wilde highlighted, presents the insurance industry with both an opportunity and challenge in finding ways to educate people on insurance whilst also providing products that are relevant

KREL Homes KREL Homes is a licensed Real Estate Agency. Licensed Agent No. 0082

FOR SALE - MARAU PLACE, LAUTOKA

TO INSPECT CONTACT:

Located at Marau place off Adam street, a very in demand area of Lautoka. With quiet neighborhood surroundings, this property enjoys both lovely mountain and sea views. Built on a housing lease with area sized at 1466 sqms, there is extra space available for further extension.

Mac Raisowalu - KREL Homes Call: +(679) 984 4015

The property is comprised of two flats. The top floor flat contains 4brms with a large living room, dining room and spacious kitchen. The bottom floor flat contains 2brm with separate facilities. The property is fully fenced with security grills and lot of parking space.

ASKING PRICE $560,000

33


34

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

GARDEN & WATER WORLD BRINGS NEW LIFE TO HOME IMPROVEMENT IT’S one thing to have a home, but it’s another to truly enjoy it. As Fiji’s first and only dedicated retailer of garden products, water features and home deco items, there’s no better store to assist with perfecting your home than Garden & Water World. In our busy modern lives, outdoor spaces offer necessary comfort and peace, and give families and friends the opportunity to relax and rejuvenate in a calm setting. GWW aims to assist customers with enhancing these areas, by offering an unmatched array of furniture and features, some of which has never before been seen in Fiji. This horticultural haven stocks a broad range of waterfalls, rock features, furniture, ponds, specimens, seeds, garden décor, and durable pumps and filters, to help you add a little bit of magic to any lounging space or landscape. Balinese hand-made stone vases, garden statues, lighting, planter pots, river pebbles and even giftware are just a sampling of the many charming pieces available to assist with creating luscious outdoor settings in your home or office space. In addition to landscaping supplies, the onsite nursery stocks a wide range of exotic and native plants, flowers and seeds, and GWW also offers pumps, filters and liners for ponds of all sizes. GWW is dedicated to helping customers create their own little slice of paradise, and assisting visitors with finding everything they need for their gardens, farms and decks.

All store items are premium and wellpriced, and carefully selected to suit local weather and environmental conditions, as well as house and property characteristics. The company is also committed to providing gardening and décor enthusiasts with fun DIY tips, home craft projects and easy-to-copy demonstrations. All staff members have been trained by New Zealand industry experts, and their service expertise combined with the store’s wide range of amazing products, has significantly lifted standards in Fiji’s home beautification sector. Located on the corner of Grantham & Carpenter St in Raiwaqa, Suva, GWW is the newest endeavour of trusted hardware giants RC Manubhai, a renowned brand that has serviced Fijians for more than forty years.

Little compares to the blissfulness of lounging on beautiful furniture in your own backyard, surrounded by intricatelycrafted wares, and listening to the soothing sounds of water features, while the scent of flora infuses the air. GWW offers to make this fantasy a reality for many Fijians Visit: gardenworld.com.fj


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

35

NEW AGENCY OPENS BAYSHORE Real Estate officially launched in Lautoka in September after opening doors in February, 2016. Founder, Arif Khan comes with over 15 years of industry experience in California, and has personally closed over $200 million worth of residential and commercial real estate transactions. Alongside fellow broker and wife, Zain Khan, his team includes pioneer Denarau realtor, Mildred Wade and Pita Whippy, in Lautoka’s CBD, at the centre of the Sugar City’s booming residential and commercial market, and ahead of national town boundary expansions that are due to further boost local real estate

REAL ESTATE AGENT NO: 0166 +(679) 666 5312 www.bayshorefiji.com

BOUTIQUE RESORT

THE COVE DENARAU

SIGATOKA

NADI

Boutique resort with potential on 5.3acres, beach front, approx 90 minutes from Nadi.

Company For Sale With Hotel License .

Executive residence on the desirable Denarau. 5 bdrm/5 baths that includes 2 self contained units, All units lead to pool area with a private boat ramp. Main house is spacious 500 m2 with stainless steel appliances and attached 2 car garage.

FOR SALE : $4.7 m

CALL ARIF : 997-3312

CALL MILDRED: 863 5427

SIMLA

MUSUNIWAI

Double storey resident with 7 bdrm/3 bths. Great location for investment property or your dream home. 6 car space. Awesome sea views in a safe and secure neighborhood.

A very quiet and safe neighborhood.Remodeled 3bdrms, 2bths with great Mountain views. House fully tiled with master bed-room having its own balcony out the back and Exit door.

LAUTOKA

LAUTOKA

FOR SALE : $990,000.00

FOR SALE : $255,000.00

CALL MILDRED : 863 5427

CALL PITA: 918 2737

Arif I Khan Managing Broker | MBA M(Fiji): 679 9973312 E: arif@bayshorefiji.com

Mildred Wade Sales Consultant M(Fiji): 679 8635427 E: mildredwadefiji@gmail.com

Pita Whippy Sales Consultant M(Fiji): 679 9182737 E: pita.whippy@bayshorefiji.com


36

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

LOKA BEACH T H E S O U L O F N ATA D O L A

NATADOLA has long reigned as Fiji’s favourite waterfront destination and as many have dreamed of, a home between this beautiful beach and its championship golf course is now possible with new residential sites by Loka Beach The private land project by Meridian Management Limited is part of a master planned coastal community that will integrate rare home sites right on a half-mile stretch of white beach cocooned within a lagoon at the foothills of the championship, Natadola Bay Golf Course.The addition of an international hotel development provides great incentives for investing in this rising, exclusive residential and tourism precinct, with prices for home lots ranging from $250k + VAT to $495k + VAT and about seven and a half acres of the waterfront resort site. Only 30 minutes from Nadi, its location between Fiji’s international gateway and the charming tourist town of Sigatoka

give it expedient access to retail outlets and amazing dining and recreational amenities at nearby 5-star resorts, particularly the world-class Natadola Championship Golf Course next door. Natadola has emerged as a prime, resort abode in the last ten years and a home in its beautiful heartland – Fiji’s best beach – are natural drawcards for savvy investors, lifestyle seekers and golf enthusiasts to build their dream home and still be centralized.

Its mixed landscape of crystal waters, white sands and quaint countryside provide a dreamy backdrop for retirement and holiday homes, all within the security of a gated community at Loka Beach, Fiji’s rising coastal community and golfer’s paradise Contact Johnny Singh on +679 9993943 or johnnysingh@propertyexperts.com.fj


PROPERTY EXPERTS

+ (679) 6728 943 + (679) 9993943 http://www.propertyexperts.com.fj johnnysingh@propertyexperts.com.fj

Buying a home is an exciting and complex adventure. It can also be a very time-consuming and costly one if you're not familiar with all aspects of the process, and don't have all the best information and resources at hand. If you're like most people, buying a home is the biggest investment you will ever make. So whether you're buying a starter home, your dream home or an investment property, why not take advantage of my experience as a local market expert for Nadi to make the most informed decisions you can, every step of the way?

JAYDILLS TIMBER SUPPLIES Wholesale, Retail & Quality Timber Supplies

TIMBER YARD:

SAWMILL:

Bua,Vanualevu, Fiji Islands Jai Kumar

Quality Timber Supplies HEMANT KUMAR Director Ph: 956 6399

B P ES R T IC E

Lot 10, Kings Rd, Wainibuku Nakasi

ROSELEIN CHAND Manager Ph: 8772556

KAUSHAL Ph: 8311203

Lot 9 Vishnu Deo Road, Nakasi. P.O Box 8215, Nakasi Fiji Islands. +679 3411488/3411715 +679 3410525 hibiscus@connect.com.fj Pacific Manufacturers Limited


W E S EL L , LE AS E , M AN AG E S U VA

Suva Realty Management Limited, Capital City's leading full service real estate firm dealing in residential, commercial and Industrial property sales, leasing and management. Property Management is an integral aspect when it comes to property investment landlords and investors often decide against employing the services of a professional property manager. In fact, management business in Fiji that caters

If you’re searching for reliable and professional property management services then look no further as Suva Reality Management Ltd has launched their business dedicated to servicing all your property management needs. Mr. Arvin Pillay of Suva Realty Management is currently personally managing executive properties in Domain, Muanikau, Lami as well as apartments complexes such as Laxman Apartments, Gladstone Apartments and Ono Flats.

Suva Realty is also one of the only strata development managers in Suva, with full body corporate management expertise and currently oversees Knolly Apartments.

Suva Realty Management Limited is bringing professionalism and accountability to the property

After 10 years working in the real estate industry, under large agencies such as Harcourts Fiji, Mr. Pillay believes the industry is ready for the big push in professional property management services.

value to owners, tenants and the professionalism of the real estate industry in Fiji

“Over the years I have discovered that property owners are continually facing the same issues, such as rent collection, property damages, overdue rent, effectively managing tenant requests, the list goes on.”

For all enquiries contact Arvin Pillay of Suva Realty Management Ltd, licensed real estage agent and property managers #163 on +679 9927555 or email at arvinpillay@gmail.com

“Our business at Suva Realty Management Limited is to ensure that property owners do not go through the hassle of managing tenants but sit back and relax while we do their management and organize any maintenance. Mr. Pillay also has a strong network of local and expatriate rental clients, ensuring his properties always secure maximum occupancy rates.

Suva Realty Management Ltd 42 Knolly Street Suva,Central Fiji Islands


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

NAISOSO ISLAND FIJI’S FINEST ADDRESS As one of Fiji’s most progressed gated residential precincts, Naisoso Island is proving a solid investment for prudent property buyers.

stamp duty for all purchaser’s, including foreign investors. Flat and expansive blocks boast superior quality with strict building conventions upholding Naisoso’s signature ambience. 16 intricately-crafted upmarket homes and holiday villas have already been constructed, with more underway. The team behind Naisoso Island Real Estate offer nearly 30 years of resort management, construction, public relations, and marketing skills between the agency’s talented individuals.Led by Nyssa and Regan Berryman, their services are end-to-end covering everything from general maintenance through to short and long term holiday letting and resales.

Naisoso Island is home to 122 freehold lots with uninterrupted views of Nadi Bay towards the Mamanuca Islands, Naisoso River and Sleeping Giant mountain range. In recent months sales have been gradually increasing and now only a limited number of lots available for purchase.In addition to land, there are also several homes for sale for those not wanting the hassle of building, all of which already earning excellent rental returns.Lot prices begin at FJD $500,000 and with its tourism-zoned precinct, Naisoso is one of few places investors can purchase property with a 3 per cent

Their onsite location allows expedient catering to tenant and guest needs,

with emergencies or maintenance issues handled punctually. All -inclusive, services extend to cleaning, washing, garden and boat, car, and home maintenance or full resort services for guests. This ensures maximum investment returns for those looking to permanently or holiday-let their properties and leverage the dominant tourism market.A 5-minute drive from the main airport, Naisoso retains privacy, security, and peace in a still central location, with its body corporate structure giving investors idyllic lifestyle properties that are professionally managed and centralized near Nadi’s CBD. To maintain exclusivity and prestige, no further land development will be permitted after the sale and completion of the remaining sites.

VILLA 95

VILLA 105

Riverfront property with excellent returns. Large pool, space for pontoon, stunning outdoor living and large, ensuited-bedrooms.

Lifestyle luxury at almost 6% return on investment. Spacious living with large backyard. Includes media room.

4

4.5

2

4

4.5

2

$3M VIP

$3M VEP

107 Sunrise Drive

100 Sunrise Drive

Currently tenanted this solid home is ideal price for entry onto Naisoso Island. Excellent investment property.

Perfect for either holiday or long term rental. Currently tenanted with excellent return on investment. Includes media room and stunning outdoor living spaces.

3

3.5

1

$1.99M VEP* *VAT If applicable

For further information on any of the above properties contact Leanni Mar T:+679 672 9374 M:+679 890 5163 E:leanni@naisosoislandrm.com Visit naisosoislandrealestate.com

3

$2M

3.5

2

39


40

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

KHELVIN REALTORS LIMITED ADVERTORIAL Khelvin Realtors’ services encompass

Khelvin Realtors anticipates working

the purchase, selling and renting

with other realty professionals to form

of properties, as well as property

a national association of real estate

management and maintenance. As a

agents, which would enhance their

further indication of its growth, the

representation and allow them to speak

company is gearing up to forge into

as a united front during the reform

property development in the near future,

process.

which will mark its incorporation of all real estate spheres.

“Such an association is long overdue and I commend the Minister for Industry,

Currently, the company’s collective

Land and Trade, Mr Faiyaz Koya , for

branch offices have some 30 real estate

floating this idea at our recent national

agents and salespersons, who are

workshop.”Mr Sharma also highlighted

continually up skilled with professional

that Khelvin real estate agents would be

development.

equipped with the necessary skill set and knowledge of the relevant laws in order

“Our vision is to be the leading real

to serve their customers effectively and

estate company in the country,”

efficiently.

shared founder and CEO, Vyas Deo

KHELVIN Realtors Limited is a 100 per cent Fiji-owned limited liability company that began its operations in the country’s second city, Lautoka.

Sharma.“We invest heavily in our sales

“We are dealing with people’s

team to provide them with the necessary

properties; these are delicate and

training so that they can provide the best

sentimental issues, so we need to be

possible service to our customers.”

upfront in our dealings. We provide in-house training to our sales agents

Khelvin Realtors endeavours to work

to ensure that they provide honest and

From its humble beginnings in 2011,

closely with the Real Estate Licensing

reliable services to our customers.”

this realty house has come a long in

Board in bringing integrity and

stamping its mark as an active, vibrant

transparency to Fiji real estate, and

For more information contact

player in Fiji’s real estate industry.In

welcomes Government efforts to reform

Mr.Vyas Sharma

2015, the Board of Directors took a

this vital industry.

Founder / CEO KHELVIN REALTORS

decision to transition the company from a family-based venture into a corporate

Mr Sharma reiterated his vision of

organization.Today, Khelvin Realtors

providing honest, professional and

boasts five branches in Suva, Nadi and

reliable services to all of Fiji’s people,

Labasa, ensuring that its services are

including investors.

widely available to property hunters and

+ 679 9975493

KHELVIN R E A LTO R S

LIMITED

vendors.Plans are already in the pipeline

“All the stakeholders in the industry

to open new offices in Nakasi and Ba, as

must work together for the betterment

part of the company’s ongoing vision to

of the industry, which is at a critical

have its presence expanded throughout

juncture. It is important that the right

the country.

decisions are made to steer the industry into the right direction,” he added.

Licenced Real Estate Agent No.0096

People And Property


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

DENARAU WATERS FULL STEAM AHEAD FOR DEVELOPMENT IMAGINE nabbing a piece of your very own South Pacific paradise, tucked away in an exclusive gated community of waterfront allotments, situated within Fiji’s most anticipated development. Nestled within established infrastructure on the southern half of Denarau Island and surrounded almost entirely by water, Denarau Waters is a prestigious residential land release offering residents peace and privacy in a luxurious setting. With each lot measuring approximately 1000sqm, the development offers buyers ample space to build their dream homes on the tranquil waterfront of Denarau. Denarau Waters is the centrepiece of a mixed-use development on Denarau Island, showcasing international resorts, including the 300-room Holiday Inn Resort, in addition to a marina, and commercial and industrial precincts. The land available at Denarau Waters is located close to the Nadi town centre and Nadi International Airport, as well as boutiques and local retail outlets, a championship golf course, and all the highlights of Fiji’s thriving tourism hub. It hardly comes as a surprise, then, that the demand for these exclusive properties within Denarau Waters has been outstanding thus far, proving the immense lure of this landmark development. All residential lots in the first three stages have been sold to a host of local and international investors. The project’s first stage, launched in 2015, sold 59 lots within 3 months, while Stage 2 sold 41 lots in 1 month. This impressive pattern was followed by Stage 3, which launched mid-2016, and sold 33 lots.“We’ve been really surprised with how quickly our project has sold out. I think this shows that we set a fair

price,” Denarau Island developer Ananth Reddy said, in relation to the rapid sales of all three residential stages thus far. An additional 16 commercial and apartment lots have been sold separately, with commercially-zoned sites within the development’s main precinct starting from 1200sqm and presenting unmatched opportunities for retailers wanting to do business in the South Pacific’s most anticipated tourism and lifestyle centre. Project progress is on-track, with civil works now well underway, and lots expected to be ready for occupancy in 2017. Construction of the surrounding commercial lots and resort developments is also on-track for completion. Interestingly, property values at Denarau Waters have also been boosted following an official valuation by international valuers Knight Frank. Reddy said that the outcome of these valuations were particularly rewarding for those who purchased at Stage 1. “When our buyers settle in 2017, they’ll be receiving instant equity and some have been extremely thankful and seeing the benefits of purchasing,” he explained. Public response to the development has also been very positive, with many viewing this project as a necessary expansion of highly lucrative existing Denarau infrastructure. As such, it is expected to significantly bolster the economic contribution that the Denarau Island area makes to the Fijian economy. Local government has, from the outset, supportive of the project, frequently emphasising the importance of Denarau Waters to Fiji. The tourism industry has also shown

support for the project, as existing tour operators see Denarau Waters as an important addition to an established tourist area of Fiji. Many believe that a greater range of tourism product and experiences will assist in attracting larger numbers from Fiji’s main source markets. Reddy emphasised that the success of Denarau Waters has been a testament to the vision of developers, and urged interested investors to act quickly to avoid missing out on their very own piece of Denarau Waters paradise. “We have had an extremely successful run with all three stages of Denarau Waters, and while they’ve sold out quickly, they wont be the last. Stage 4 of Denarau Waters will be released shortly and expression of interest are been taken now” Visit : denarau.com.fj

41


42

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

VITIVOU ESTATES NEVER short of visionary projects, the last Freehold development site along the maxed-out Suva-Nausori corridor has been snapped up by the Hexagon Group of Hotels. Works have begun on a $8.5 million commercial property, alongside over 100 residential lots under the Vitivou Estates brand. Cope Construction is contracted to the development at Davuilevu, while plans are also underway for a 4-star hotel to cater to the flurry of business visitors commuting through the Nausori Airport. The Hexagon Group are also behind the Yadua Bay Resort & Villas at Malaqereqere in Sigatoka, another addition to its portfolio


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

43

PRIME STONE REALTY CLUB OCEANUS RESORT GOES UP FOR SALE PACIFIC Harbour has always been a property mecca for its beautiful villas, surrounded by lush golfing greens and an assortment of charming boutique stores, cafes and adventure activities to provide for diverse interests. And in a rare availability, a tourism property is up for grabs on its peaceful riverfront, as the only obtainable commercially-zoned waterfront property with a small boat marina in the scenic area – Club Oceanus Resort. This dive resort at 1 Atoll Place has recently remodelled 10 individual air-conditioned rooms, and a 24-bed dormitory and conference centre built of solid concrete exterior, finished off with a wooded interior.

A swimming pool and Brizo Bar & Grill is a popular spot for parties and events, allowing large groups of families and friends to gather at its indoor and outdoor riverfront deck seating. A thatched bar area provides overlooks the scenic Qaraniqio River and jetty, which is rented out monthly to several commercial boat operators and off-shore resorts, and with several new docks installed, has significantly increased boating activities for guests and boosted rental income for the marina.

From Section A of Pacific Harbour, the picturesque property is a popular convention area and near the area’s famous beach, high-end residences, golf course and the retail and cultural hub of the Arts Village.

The resort is also home to Aqua-Trek, Fiji’s premier dive operators and a fully equipped dive shop specialising in worldfamous shark diving at nearby Beqa Lagoon, adding to the lustre of activities for guests to enjoy at this enchanting area.

This dreamy property is an excellent investment for both its commercial and residential prospects, in the heart of Fiji’s adventure capital and Fiji’s most scenic coastal communities

Also for sale is the resort owners 3-bedroom villa, nestled on the edge of the resort precinct and commanding stunning water frontage with a master bedroom, kitchen and open-plan living, dining and lounge areas.

CLUB OCEANUS RESORT

PACIFIC HARBOUR

For

Sale

$4.5

M

VEP

FJD

FEAT URES

Freehold Commercially-Zoned Beautiful Views 24-Bed Dorm 10 Rooms (H/C, AC) Conference Centre Bar & Grill Area Riverfront Deck Fully-Equipped Dive Shop Swimming Pool 3-bedroom Villa Jetty

Arunesh Prasad Director PrimeStone Realty +679 8762247 primestonefiji@gmail.com


44

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

AUBERGE BEACH VILLAS N A N U K U L A U N C H E S P R I VAT E R E S I D E N C E S AUBERGE Beach Villas officially launched in September 2016, adding luxury residences to the Pacific Harbour beachfront. With prices beginning at USD$495,000 an exquisite range of 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom villas will be located steps away from the Nanuku Auberge Resort clubhouse. Nanuku’s blend of authentic Fijian hues and contemporary dÊcor resonate through the villas, designed by the globally acclaimed Grounds Kent Architects. Because of the success of Phase One, Phase Two has already been released and construction will begin in 2017. Managerial services by the resort are available for owners who are interested in potential return on investment. Information, private tours and discovery visits arranged at RealEstate@NanukuFiji. com or by calling International +679 345 2110, AUS 1800 289 345, or USA 1-844-Own-Fiji Visit : NanukuFiji.com


Wildly civilized civilized Wildly Deliciouslyexotic exoticFiji FijiisisAuberge AubergeResorts Resortsatatits itswarmest warmestand andmost mostauthentic. authentic. Deliciously It’salso alsoaaunique uniqueaddress: address:On Onaathree-kilometer three-kilometerarc arcofofsand sandininViti VitiLevu’s Levu’sPacific Pacific It’s Harbour,contemporary contemporarybeachfront beachfronthomes homesand andgenerous generoushomesites homesitesoffer offeryour yourfamily family Harbour, anopportunity opportunityto tolive liveininone oneofofthe theworld’s world’sgreat greatnatural naturallandscapes, landscapes,connect connectwith withits its an mostwelcoming welcomingpeople, people,and andenjoy enjoyevery everyluxury luxuryofofthe theaward-winning award-winning most NanukuAuberge AubergeResort ResortFiji. Fiji.It’s It’swildly wildlycivilized. civilized. Nanuku

1-and and2-bedroom 2-bedroomvillas villasfrom from$495K $495KUSD. USD.Homesites Homesitesfrom from$399K $399KUSD. USD. 1Information,private privatetours toursand anddiscovery discoveryvisits visitsarranged arrangedatatRealEstate@NanukuFiji.com RealEstate@NanukuFiji.comor orby bycalling calling Information, International:+679 +679345 3452110, 2110,Toll-Free Toll-FreeAus: Aus:1800 1800289 289345, 345,US US1-844-Own-Fiji. 1-844-Own-Fiji. International: NanukuFiji.com NanukuFiji.com

Visualrepresentation. representation.Subject Subjecttotochange. change.Neither NeitherAuberge AubergeResorts ResortsLLC LLCnor norany anyofofitsitsaffi affiliates liatesororrelated relatedpersons persons(the (the“Auberge “AubergeGroup”) Group”)isisrelated relatedto,to,affi affiliated liatedororassociated associatedwith, with,orora apartner partnerininthe thebusiness businessof,of,Nanuku Nanukureal realestate estateororany anyofofitsitsaffi affiliates liates Visual relatedpersons, persons,and andnonorepresentation, representation,warranty warrantyororguarantee guaranteeisismade madeororimplied impliedbybythe theAuberge AubergeGroup Groupininrespect respectofofany anystatement statementororinformation informationmade madeororcontained containedininthis thisad. ad.Neither Neitherthe theAuberge AubergeGroup Groupnor norany anyofofitsitsdirectors, directors,offi officers, cers,employees employees ororrelated agentshas hasororwill willhave haveany anyresponsibility responsibilityororliability liabilityarising arisingout outof,of,ororrelated relatedto,to,this thisadadororthe thetransactions transactionscontemplated contemplatedbybythis thisad, ad,including includingany anyliability liabilityororresponsibility responsibilityforforany anystatement statementororinformation informationmade madeororcontained containedininthis thisadvertisement. advertisement. ororagents

16266-Fiji-Nanuku-FoodofPlace-Ad-Final.indd 1 1 16266-Fiji-Nanuku-FoodofPlace-Ad-Final.indd

11/15/16 1:52 1:52PM P 11/15/16


46

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

TRUST FOR LANDOWNING MINORS LEASE monies for native land owners under-18 have been secured into a trust by the I Taukei (native) Land Trust Board, as a financial nest egg until they reach voting age. This saw $12.5 million deposited in trust for 30,634 young landowners registered in the Vola ni Kawa Bula, Fiji’s official registry of natives and native landowners, with the amount held differing and ranging up to $99,000. Interest earned over time is expected to boost their savings, with iLTB chairman, Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama encouraging a “culture of savings” instead of spending lease monies as it came in

BACKGROUND

MISSION STATEMENT

A home is one’s most imperative investment. It is one of our most significant assets, where we give our family a dream life and where their dreams are met, to live in a comfortable home. Buying or selling your home is both a profoundly personal and highly multifaceted process, but as convoluted as it is, one thing is simple; the first time you walk through the door of your future home, you just know it’s right.

To provide our clients the very best service in all aspects of residential real estate, whether we are handling their sale or purchase personally or connecting them to one of our teams of associated property experts for particular services.

As a licenced Real Estate Agent, Active Real Estate is located at 102 Marks Street Suva and is locally owned. We are here for our people; we do strive and fully commit ourselves to our clients in providing them with professional services and we believe that we are one of the best and most professional real estate agents operating in the beautiful islands of Fiji. We are here for interested investors looking for new homes with quality services. We always have accessibility whether we are at our office or out in the field.

AVINASH PILLAY LICENSED REAL ESTATE AGENT ACTIVE REAL ESTATE LICENSED AGENT 0108 102 MARK STREET SUVA P O Box 1358,NABUA Ph: (679) 3549401 Mobile: (679) 8304358, 8496512, 7144202 Email: activeproperty@yahoo.com

I, Avinash Pillay, am the sole director and also a Justice of Peace, of this young, motivated company with seven years’ experience in the real estate business and I stand to serve you regarding investment advice, working with you on your long term real estate goals and connecting you with relocation, financial and legal services.

We believe in customers for life and being there for our clients throughout our journey in business and in life to ensure that when it comes to residential property, they receive the very best this industry has to offer. Our aim is to be at the forefront of property marketing and to provide tailored innovative solutions that fit our client’s individual property and situation, guaranteeing that the best possible outcome is achieved. We are always available at your convenience.


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

DAMODAR EXPANDS PROPERTY PORTFOLIO DAMODAR’S signature city complex heads North with a $10 million Damodar City Labasa underway near the town’s local courthouse. Also on course is a $500 million masterplan at Raiwaqa, turning 21 acres purchased from the Golden Century Company into retail, entertainment, commercial and hotel developments near its flagship Damodar City Centre Suva and the Damodar City Aquatic Centre at Laucala Bay

47


THE BEST WAY FIJI’S BIGGEST TO ADVERTISE PROPERTY YOUR PROPERTY WEBSITE 30,000 If you’repeople buying, selling or visit ourthe website each to month renting best place so ask your estate to search Fiji’s real largest selection advertise your today of properties is property on our website


P:679 338 6886 | M: 679 996 9866 (24 Hrs) www.eslfiji.com.fj | E: info@eslfiji.com.fj

SERVICES

Integrated Security System Access Control System

Biometric Access Management CCTV IP Solutions Emergency Evacuation System Audio / Video Intercom Car Park Entry System Perimeter Security Gate Entry Automation TV Reticulation 24hrs Response

APPLICATIONS

Security Consultancy Services Security Risk Assessment Electronic Security Design & Built

CORPORATE | COMMERCIAL | INDUSTRIAL


50

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

REAL ESTATE WORKSHOP

C E N T R A L & N O R T H E R N A G E N T S G AT H E R I N L A M I

AGENTS FROM THE CENTRAL AND NORTHERN DIVISIONS GATHER IN LAMI FOR THE SECOND NATIONAL REAL ESTATE WORKSHOP HOSTED BY THE REALB.

AGENTS & SALESPERSONS PARTICIPATE IN THE SECOND NATIONAL WORKSHOP HOSTED BY THE REALB AT THE NOVOTEL CONVENTION CENTRE IN LAMI.

REAL ESTATE AGENTS LICENSING BOARD REGISTRAR & VIRISILA TUIMANU MAKES A POINT DURING THE SECOND NATIONAL REAL ESTATE SAVUSAVU AGENTS SHARE A LIGHT MOMENT WITH FELLOW INDUSTRY MEMBERS IN LAMI.

WORKSHOP IN LAMI.


THE BEST OF EVERYTHING NOTHING LESS THAN THE BEST IN

COMMERCIAL & OFFSET PRINTING,

COMMERCIAL PACKAGING, DIGITAL & LARGE FORMAT PRINTING

35 Ackland St, Vatuwaqa. P.O. Box 400, Suva, Fiji Islands. Phone: 3375 041 / 042 Fax: 3375 043 Email: sales@maxmarketingfiji.com

www.maxmarketingfiji.com


52

M A G A Z I N E 2 0 1 6 / p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j

FIJI REAL ESTATE SURVEY 2016 S TAT I S T I C S , S U G G E S T I O N S & S U B M I S S I O N S

CAPTURING the voices of industry consumers, practitioners and aspiring buyers, the third annual 2016 property.com. fj Real Estate Survey 2016 has once again offered unique and valuable insight into this pivotal sector. And as the immense quantity of feedback received has proven, there is never a shortage of input for a trade that caters to the universal necessity of property ownership and occupation. The survey was released in September by Property.com.fj, the country’s leading real estate portal, and garnered responses from over 1000 participants, hailing from Fiji, Australia, New Zealand and the United States of America, amongst other locations, over a threeweek period. Concerns about property affordability were most prevalent amongst responses, frequently cited as an industry area needing improvement. Frequent suggestions for assisting lowincome and single-parent families with property financing were also made, evidencing growing concern for the plight of disadvantaged buyers. “Provide cheaper costs to housing and investment to young people with young families, [and] provide finances to single moms or single working parents who earn $20,000 per annum,” one respondent recommended, reflecting th widely-held concern for low-income and single-income families. “It is important that we have affordable homes coupled with ability to pay… to improve the real estate industry,

Do you have house insurance?

How affordable is housing in Fiji?

Yes 42%

Moderately Unaffordable 30%

No 58%

Affordable 24% Very Affordable 7% Moderate Affordable 18% Very Unaffordable 22%

someone must measure up the foreigners’ influence on real estate prices. Respondents also hinted at the fact that industry confidence could be substantially improved if lengthy and time-consuming bureaucratic processes were decreased, and even property taxes lowered, as well as by increasing cooperation with immigration officials to expediently carry out background checks on suspicious foreign buyers, and decreasing Stamp Duty costs for foreigners. Some others petitioned for easier and faster loan approvals, lamenting the current lengthy timeframes and stating that it took too long to build a home in Fiji as a result. “Land will stop selling unless laws are changed; you can’t take six months to clear titles and expect to build something on that property in six months without

building materials,” one respondent complained, in clear reference to the delays that often plague governmental approval processes. Another commonly discussed matter was that of restrictions for non-citizen investment under the Land Sales Act (2014). At present, foreigners cannot purchase property within municipal boundaries, unless it is a strata development or integrated tourism project. Some respondents called for tighter regulations and demarcations of where foreigners are restricted from purchasing. Others instead denounced the Act, opining that it should be more “investor friendly”, although adding that the provisions of the Act which ring-fence housing stock and vacant land inside municipal boundaries for Fijian citizens were appropriate to market conditions at the time of the Act’s amendment.


p r o p e r t y. c o m . f j / 2 0 1 6 M A G A Z I N E

Why are you insterested in Fiji real estate?

Somewhere to live Lifestyle

Which sources of information did you use during your most recent search for ahome?

31%

16%

Inverstment Retirement

33% 20%

Which source of information do you find most helpful when searching for properties?

Internet 43%

Internet 38%

Real Estate Agents 19%

Newspaper 11%

Newspapers 27%

Family & Friends 9%

Magazines 2%

Other 22%

Open House & Inspections 9%

Bank or Lawyer 1% Real Estate Agents 8% Facebook & Social Media 10%

“Ninety per cent is native land available for lease. There was no need to impose further restrictions to non-citizens owning Freehold vacant residential land outside town boundaries, by having to build within two years, [and] of minimum spend ($250,000 as per the Act),” a respondent explained. One respondent’s view underscored fears of a collapsing residential land market outside larger city areas, such as Savusavu and Taveuni, amid what they foresee to be a downward spiral in foreign-owned houses and land, as foreigners continue to bail out of investments and projects due to policy uncertainty. Realtors were also often noted as a sphere needing more attention, particularly in relation to regulations, commissions (for which legislation is currently underway), conduct, advertising and pricing of properties.

Additionally, there were many shared desires for improved build quality and property maintenance. “Encourage landlords to view their house as an investment, instead of a goose that lays perpetual golden eggs for free,” one respondent recommended. “Maintenance is neglected, as are improvements, and landlords need to realise that if they spend to upgrade a house, they can often command a higher price and get better tenants - plus spend less on maintenance because they built it the right way in the first place. I cannot stress this highly enough. The agent business is also parasitical, and needs to play its part in encouraging the improvement of the industry.” While the survey highlighted some points of contention within the industry, there have been major positive changes in recent times.

In a flourishing and essential industry, it has certainly been encouraging to have already witnessed heightened regulatory efforts from the Fiji Real Estate Agents Licencing Board, and a willingness by agents to form associations for better representation. Given the variety of valuable suggestions made by respondents on ways to potentially improve the local real estate industry, Fiji’s increasing industry practitioners, regulators and affiliates will endeavour to utilize survey feedback constructively. Indeed, the survey results will likely serve as a platform to initiate further industry alterations and adjustments, in order to yield greater satisfaction for agents and investors alike

53


INVESTMENTS REAL ESTATE REALB licence 0168

FOR ENQUIRIES CALL SOLE AGENT AMRISH MAHARAJ ON 9064491 OR EMAIL ON amrish.vector@gmail.com

COMING SOON !!!!

GROUND FLOOR SHOP SPACES

FIRST FLOOR OFFICE SPACES

Queens Road, Martintar, Nadi. At the rate Nadi is growing, business opportunities are rising day after day. Located facing the Queens road in Nadi’s busiest suburb, we bring to you the opportunity to be amongst these businesses. Surrounding and neighbouring businesses are law firm, real estate offices, coffee shops/ cafes, salons, Fiji’s top tour companies are just to few to name. Secure a space now and not wait for the last minute!!

INVESTMENTS REAL ESTATE REALB licence 0168

Real�Estate�Customised


FINAL

BLOCKS

NOW SELLING FREEHOLD WATERFONT

FROM $895K

START BUILDING RIGHT AWAY

F I J I ’ S

F I N E S T

A D D R E S S

CALL +679 675 0172 SALES@NAISOSOISLAND.COM • NAISOSOISLAND.COM OR VISIT OUR BEACHFRONT SALES OFFICE See Naisoso Island for yourself by visiting our Beachfront Sales Office open 10am and 5pm, 7 days a week.


POTS • GIFTWARE • STATUES & LIGHTING • WATER FEATURES

Ka

Gra nth am RD

LANDSCAPING SUPPLIES • FILTERS & PUMPS

pa di a Pl TOTAL Raiwaqa

Manubhai R C & Co Ltd

WE ARE HERE

Butterfly Treats

Salvation Army Hall

G ra nt ha m RD

C a rp e

n te r S

t

C a rp e n

te r S t

Bulaccino

Fiji Commerce Commission

PH: 338 4300 EXT: 115 RCM COMPLEX CORNER OF GRANTHAM RD & CARPENTER SREET, RAIWAQA,SUVA.


Property.com.fj Issue 1  

Read Fiji's first real estate magazine by Property.com.fj. In our first edition, we discuss the latest news and trends in the Fiji property...

Advertisement
Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you