Investing in real estate in Ghana is steadily gaining traction. And it’s only set to continue. Thanks to the political stability and economic boom Ghana has enjoyed over the years, the land of gold has become a desirable real estate destination.
Also, with the many government initiatives to attract diasporans and foreigners alike, the real estate investment space in Ghana has seen massive activity. Further,, institutional investors have put some of their money into the brick-and-mortar business, while other international developers have similarly pitched camp on Ghanaian soils.
These, among many other factors, have made investing in Ghanaian real estate attractive to many. And the dollars keep rolling in.
Overview of the Ghanaian real estate space
Though there’s still acres of room for growth, the Ghanaian real estate space has come a long way.
The overall increase in prosperity has brought massive growth to the real estate industry. Areas that were undesirable patches of undeveloped land a few years ago are now invaluable property areas commanding impressive values on the market. Real estate development has followed the slow but sure infrastructural developments like roads and schools reaching many parts of the country.
And in major cities like Takoradi, Kumasi, and Tema, modern buildings are taking over many suburbs. As for Accra, the capital city of Ghana, real estate has increased in value over the years. In the wealthier neighborhoods like Cantonments, Airport, Labone, and Ridge, single-family property values are inching closer to averaging half a million dollars.
You’ll also find blocks of mid-rise luxurious apartments in these areas, with prices starting from $85,000 for studio units. On the commercial real estate side, rents for grade A office spaces have dropped to around $20 per meter square from their highs of $35. Partly in line with general global trends, increased supply, and sluggish economic performance, experts project these rents to drop further in the short term.
While there’s still hope for commercial real estate to bounce back, investing in residential real estate in Ghana seems like the best bet now. That’s even more so in Accra, where the real estate market is about the strongest it’s been.
The real estate market in Accra is strong
As the capital of Ghana, Accra’s borders have expanded quickly in the last few years, with a remarkable effect on the real estate market. Prices have shot up, particularly since 2022. Investors who invested in real estate in Accra would have seen massive capital appreciation – or increased rents on their (residential) properties.
And that trend will only continue as more people and businesses pitch camp in Accra. Beyond those factors, here are a few extra reasons why you should invest in Accra:
High population density.
Accra is the most populous city in Ghana. According to the 2021 population and housing census, over 2.6 million people call Accra home. And many of these people would need a place to call home.
High housing deficit
Due to this high population density, there are high housing deficits in Accra. Housing all these millions of people has been a massive challenge to both government and the private sector. The demand for housing far outpaces supply. The right type of real estate investment in Accra, especially in the residential space, won’t stay on the market too long.
slow supply due to many factors
The supply of real estate has always lagged behind demand. That’s common in many real estate markets. But that also presents an opportunity. Excess demand over supply leads to scarcity, which pushes prices up. While the supply of real estate is sometimes slow because of the cost of completing a project – and the time it takes – that also makes it a worthwhile investment.
Developers that can meet the market’s needs and get that property across the line are in a great position to enjoy impressive returns on their real estate investment in Accra.
Many real estate options are available
With some digging, you’ll find many options to help you invest in real estate. Single-family, multi-family, and mixed-use developments present alternative real estate types ripe for investment. You can also target the midrange sector or go the luxury real estate route: the former is a thriving submarket in Accra. All told, the many options available mean you have more case studies to look at before you decide on a suitable route for your real estate investment in Accra.
Accra is an economic hotbed
Accra’s most powerful pull factor is the burst of economic activities that go on there daily. For starters, the informal retail sector drives many people to the capital. Then many government institutions have their headquarters – and many offices in Accra.
And then you can talk about the thriving services industry setting up many branches in Accra. Many pubs, restaurants, cafes, and shopping centers make Accra home.
Lastly, several multinational companies with a footprint in Ghana have offices in Accra. Accra is also home to many universities and other tertiary institutions. All these economic activities employ people who earn some income that can help keep the real estate industry moving.
Ghanaian real estate in Ghana: Where to invest in Ghana?
Accra seems to be an excellent investment option for your real estate in Ghana. And depending on your financial strength and investment preferences, you can look at Accra’s million-dollar neighborhoods as a great starting point.
Areas like Cantonments, Labone, Dzorwulu, Ridge, Airport, East Legon, and Osu command some of the highest property prices in Accra. And if you can get an investment property in these areas, you’ll put yourself in a spot to enjoy healthy returns.
But you can look beyond these traditional first-class neighborhoods and turn to other rising areas like East Legon Hills and Oyarifa. These promising property hotspots offer rewarding real estate investment opportunities. Further, other middle-income areas in Accra, like Spintex, Achimota, Tesano, and North Kaneshie, can be excellent real estate investment locations.
And this post is not doing justice to the many other areas in Accra worthy of your real estate investment dollars.
Having sung the praises of Accra for this long (and rightly so), you can also look beyond Accra for your real estate investment needs. There’s more to real estate in Ghana than in Accra. For example, cities like Tema, Kumasi, and Takoradi have exciting real estate investment potentials worth considering.
The Kensington Heights Apartments in the heart of the Airport City Kumasi project figures to be one of the most promising real estate investment prospects in Kumasi. With the Kumasi airport set to attain international status, Kumasi will soon be another real estate hotspot in Ghana.
Aburi, a town about an hour from Accra, is also a promising real estate destination. Given its excellent weather and closeness to Accra, many savvy investors are already turning to this little town with picturesque views of Accra.
Best places to buy a rental property in Ghana
The buy-to-let real estate investment model is becoming popular in Ghana, especially in the major cities. Given the rising property prices, many people are renting rather than buying. Also, since many multinational companies in Ghana attract ex-pats, some foreigners may not always want to buy and live in homes in Ghana.
Even if they did, these properties could be second homes or investment vehicles that can generate some rental income. Factors like these make the rental property market in Ghana an exciting prospect for many investors. Consequently, the market is responding by providing multi-family developments like mid-rise apartment buildings to cater to these market needs.
With this option, you can buy a unit and let it out for some rental income.
That said, single-family properties remain strong players in the rental property mix. Many families prefer the exclusivity and privacy that come with their standalone residence, and at the higher ends of the market, you’ll find this option.
Filling them up with tenants is sometimes harder as they cost more. But they offer tons of flexibility to users. For one, a tenant can turn a residential building into an office space or a hybrid work environment, welcoming and engaging clients from home. If there’s enough space on the compound for parking, this could offer a better deal than most multi-family properties.
Many developers promise rental yields of between 6% and 8%, and shooting for those ballpark figures is a good enough guide for returns on your real estate in Ghana.
If you can lock in financing, here are some locations to find the best rental properties. As always, the high-income neighborhoods of Cantonments, Airport, Ridge, East Legon, Dzorwulu, and Labone hold an unfair advantage in multi-family real estate. You’ll get many developments in these areas with studio, one, two, and three-bedroom units for sale.
As is popular with many buyers, they buy and rent out these units for rental income. Since these areas command some of the highest rents in the country, it’s easy to pick them as the best places to buy rental real estate in Ghana.
Factors to consider when investing in rental properties in Accra
We’ve seen the potential and promise of rental properties in Accra. But they’re not an automatic shoo-in to return you the highest returns on your real estate investment in Ghana. You want to do your homework and choose what works best for you, considering your goals and the data.
Here are a few factors to consider.
Effective demand and vacancy rates
Demand for rental properties is always high in Accra. But demand, backed by a means to rent those spaces – is not always as high. This fact is evident by the sometimes high vacancy rates in some of the high-end residential units in Accra. Yes, there’ll always be tenant turnover and vacancies. How would that affect your real estate investment, especially your financial projections and repayments, if you’re financing with debt?
Those factors also mean you’ll have to work extra hard to fill your units, given the competition in the market. That hard work could come in engaging the services of a real estate broker and real estate marketers. You must factor those costs into your estimations.
Your management style
Rental properties require work to collect the optimum rent and meet your financial goals. Most of that work comes in managing those properties. Are you willing to handle the day-to-day management of the rental property? Or you intend to hire a management company?
Are you ready for the challenges with the pros and cons of each approach? One will take a lot of your time; the other will cost you more money. Know where you stand on these factors before you invest in rental property.
Even if there’s a high demand for rental properties in Accra, the options in the best locations will command higher rental values. Before you invest in that rental property, the location should always be front and center of your decision.
We’ve identified single and multi family buildings as two types of rental properties you can consider as investment options. There may be no wrong option, as they’ll depend on your goals. That said, it helps to know what property type you want to invest in.
Smaller multi family units like studio, one or two-bedroom apartments may move faster. But they also come with extra management duties. For example, it’s sometimes hard to collect rent from multiple tenants. And addressing their many issues isn’t always fun.
Conversely, a standalone three, four, or five-bedroom property has that extra user flexibility that enables you to collect even higher rents. And it’s easier to deal with one tenant in a single-family property. Finding a tenant willing to afford that higher rent is also harder.
How to invest in real estate in Ghana?
Apart from the promise of returns, real estate in Ghana offers an option for you to diversify your investment portfolio. But there’s an art to investing in the Ghanaian real estate space. Like any location, you need to have some points in mind before you invest in real estate. Here are some helpful tips to guide you on your real estate investment in Ghana.
Research research, research
The best form of real estate starts with research. And if you want to invest in real estate in Ghana, research is your first step. That’s where you need the services of a trusted real estate broker (more on that soon). The many real estate asset types in Ghana have inherent risks and rewards.
Then there are other locations and real estate submarkets you can look at before you invest in real estate in Ghana. The land tenure system in the various locations, rules for citizens and foreigners, tax implications, and the many other costs of investing in real estate should come up during your research.
Industry trends, economic trends, property cycles, and other social factors should all feature in your research before you invest in real estate in Ghana. Further, look at the lending options available should you consider debt financing. These points show you’ll need to do more than compare prices if you want to invest in real estate in Ghana.
Consider the rental market
The rental market is a crucial aspect of any real estate industry. And Ghanaian real estate is no different. If the rental market is buoyant, it will impact the sales market. Where there are many decent rental units available at moderate prices, people will go for that option at the expense of shelling out to buy a property. The added flexibility and liquidity it affords buyers play a crucial role.
Conversely, a weak rental market fraught with many abnormally high rental values will cause more people to consider buying real estate outright. That can drive up demand for properties for sale in Ghana.
Keep those dynamics in mind. The rental market changes faster than the sales market, and these factors may not persist for too long.
Work with a local real estate agent/broker
If all these factors about investing in real estate in Ghana appear to overwhelm you, the best thing to do is find a trusted real estate broker in Ghana to work with. Not every agent is well-versed in the technicalities of real estate investment beyond buying and selling, and that’s worth noting. To overcome that, you can hire a real estate consult/ real estate advisory company to help you navigate the sometimes mazy Ghanaian real estate industry.
Yes, these may seem like an added expense at the start. But those extra dollars spent will easily save you from making the wrong investment moves. Or at least working with a professional could be the difference between a good investment and a great one. Fine margins, but worth the extra mile.
Benefits of investing in Ghana real estate:
Investing in real estate in Ghana comes with many benefits. As an investment vehicle, you’re putting your money to good use. You’ll get other non-financial benefits like fulfillment, peace of mind, and status. Few people can call themselves successful real estate investors. Here are more benefits you’ll enjoy when you invest in Ghanaian real estate.
Property prices have increased in Ghana over the last few years. And while you’ll need an up-to-date appraisal by a qualified property valuer to determine the current value of your property, the overall real estate market promises capital appreciation. Over time, your property appreciates. And if you were to sell it at that time, you’ll realize a nice little profit.
If you invest in rental property, you can enjoy rental income when a tenant takes up your unit. Even if it’s not a rental property, you can offer the property for short-stays and collect a tidy rental income. There may be fluctuations, but that’s par for the industry. Plus, that’s much better than having the property vacant and depreciating.
Security of income
Related to the rental income, if you can find a stable tenant willing to sign up for a long-term lease, you can guarantee yourself some security of (rental) income. It takes some hard work to get that willing tenant on board, but that promise of security of income makes it a good try.
Great for diversification
Investing in real estate in Ghana gives you entry into a whole new market. And that’s great for diversification if you have no other properties in Ghana – or Africa. Even if you’ve other investments in Africa and Ghana, real estate is another asset class good for diversification.
Leverage for more investments
Owning real estate in Ghana – and elsewhere, really – gives you the lever to pull off many other deals should you want to. Backed by your interest in a property, you can get financing for similar moves. That could be a huge factor when the need arises.
Challenges of investing in real estate in Ghana
As promising as real estate investment in Ghana appears, the other side of the coin deserves just as much attention. Like any investment, some factors could derail your investment – or at least slow down how fast you achieve your investment goals.
High costs of financing
Interest rates in Ghana have notoriously been high. And with the recent high inflation, that has been even more so. These high rates have impacted the costs of debt financing.
The most affordable mortgage rates are no cheaper than 10% per annum. And some don’t go beyond twenty years. Interest on other forms of borrowing could rise as high as 35%.
These eye-gouging numbers make investing in real estate in Ghana even more expensive for most people.
Escalating construction costs
The cost of building new property has risen sharply since 2022. Some building materials have increased by 50-70%, while others have almost doubled. These increased costs delay many real estate construction projects. Further, these high costs could affect the initial price – and earning – projections. Not ideal for investments and not good news for real estate investment in Ghana.
The property-acquisition process in Ghana isn’t the smoothest. Since the land title registration process is still migrating to a digital space, the manual process of conducting searches in some parts of Ghana could delay the process.
Other costs associated with real estate investing in Ghana
Investing in real estate in Ghana doesn’t come cheap. You’ll still have to deal with some cost components at many stages of your investment cycle.
Before you invest in real estate in Ghana, you’ll have to pay some fees. It’ll all depend on the type of investment you go for. For example, your acquisition costs as a developer will differ from a property buyer’s.
For the latter, you’ll have to pay an agency commission if you buy a property through the services of an agent or broker. These could range between 1% and 5% of the property value. You’ll also pay stamp duty and other registration fees to transfer the title to you.
Insuring the property, ensuring it meets fire safety requirements, and paying property rates are some management costs you’ll incur because you own a property in Ghana.
These may differ by property type, though. When you work with a seasoned real estate professional, they can advise you accordingly.
When it comes time to dispose of your interest in a property, you’ll also have to cover some costs. Marketing and agent commissions are the first that come to mind. But also, a capital gains tax applies when you sell your property for a profit.
In conclusion, investing in Ghanaian real estate is a promising move
The real estate industry in Ghana is still growing. There is massive potential for growth, and promising opportunities still untapped. As a developing country, Ghana will see more investment in infrastructure over the years.
A direct by-product of that will be more towns growing into new cities and older cities expanding. All these signal immense growth for real estate investment opportunities. It’s time to start thinking about investing in real estate in Ghana.
Want a trusted real estate company to help you through Ghana’s real estate investment landscape? Talk to Hapgrid today. Call Boat at +233-241-517-471 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more.