We come from a tradition where the only properties we own have been the houses we live in as well as the modest thatched huts in our home villages built on ancestral land. Over the years, this truth has changed. Driving around Gaborone, it is quite evident that there has been a host of commercial property development, one of the more notable ones being the city’s new CBD which houses the Lansmore Masa Square Hotel and the Prime Plaza office block.
Batswana can capitalize on this by breaking the tradition of buying a house with the sole intention of making rental profit. We now all have a chance to own some of Botswana’s modern landmarks and contribute to her rising skylines. Even though tribal and state land is not available for sale to foreigners, there are large areas of land across the country that are, allowing people the chance to actually invest in, for example, their nearest shopping centre or the office block in which they work.
To most of us, the stock exchange is unchartered territory, yet this is simply the place where shares are bought and sold. There are currently 3 domestic property investment companies listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE). Of these, PrimeTime, one of the oldest listed property companies in Botswana, strives to reinvent the property landscape in a sense, whether it be through the customer centricity and convenience of their Sebele Centre shopping mall or the innovative green focus that is built into the very foundation of the Prime Plaza office block.
The beauty of investing with a property company is that you get to enjoy all the benefits of being a landlord with virtually no effort. You can rest assured knowing that a company like PrimeTime with its 25 years of existence will have your best interests at heart when managing your property investment.
The latest Botswana International Monetary Fund report observed that despite our over reliance on diamonds and the effects of the global financial crisis, external or foreign funding is something that we have chosen not to rely on. There is a sense of pride to owning one’s property and being self-reliant; working with what you have in order to overcome a challenge and succeed, ushering us into a new culture beyond only owning our modest village houses.
The issue of land has always been a hot topic in Botswana, and as our cityscape continues to grow and change, with new developments arising every day, it’s a pretty great feeling knowing that you can be a part of this change. As the property sector continues to buzz and boom, it’s worth stopping to realize you don’t simply have to watch it all happen; you, too, can be a player in the rise of a city and a nation beyond simply your inherited ancestral lands.
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