Invest-Gate concluded its second virtual roundtable on June 15, called the “New Real Estate Product,” and crowned it with success after marking a new era of bulletproof development, fully responding to consumer needs and, most importantly, laying out the ultimate “new normal” playbook on leading brick-and-mortar businesses through the crisis and beyond.
The fruitful event brought together a number of real estate moguls, Mountain View Chairman Amr Soliman, Rooya Chairman Hisham Shoukri, Tatweer Misr President & CEO Ahmed Shalaby, Iwan Developments CEO Waleed Mokhtar, Al Futtaim Group Real Estate Managing Director Ashraf Ezz El-Din, Vantage Developments Chairman Mohamed Abdel Gawad, and Castle Development for Real Estate CEO Ahmed Mansour, who pulled together a myriad of diversified new real estate products.
Roundtable Members Pull Together Recommendations as Follows:
– General Remarks:
1) The real estate product must turn into a financial instrument that attracts investment flows such as bonds.
2) More mortgages should be introduced to overcome the housing affordability crisis.
3) It is paramount to set up real estate investment funds, besides the revision of prevailing laws regulating these funds.
4) The state should reassess the prices of land plots, which certainly translate to lower unit costs.
5) The hospitality sector should revisit the use of current spaces and incorporate new activities to effectively utilize these areas, in the wake of the social distancing and online meetings trends.
– For Residential Property:
1) New layouts of residential units should be blueprinted to reconfigure the spaces that will feel more convenient and functional to accommodate the new lifestyle, making room for a study or home office within residential properties.
2) Developers must begin to incorporate a strong technological infrastructure to facilitate and stimulate work performance, especially for those working from home.
3) Mixed-use spaces can be implemented within residential buildings (ex: on rooftops) to serve more than one resident module, including the provision of entertainment, dining, and business services.
4) It is essential that the state relaxes some building codes for developers to establish mixed-use residential buildings and communities.
5) Mortgage for off-plan real estate is the way out to address the housing affordability crisis, in light of the weakening buyer purchasing power due to the COVID-19 hit.
6) Building medical establishments within residential communities should be permitted, instead of the allocation of separate plots, since it has been deemed a fundamental component for clients after the outbreak.
– For Commercial Centers:
1) More warehouses and logistic zones should be rolled out within commercial areas as the rising online sales will necessitate bigger inventories to meet the demands of retail and logistics customers.
2) As demand for commercial/retail centers goes down, developers must react by tailoring new recreational activities to lure more shoppers and tenants, hence fill in the gap.
3) Provision of safe/contactless services to maintain productivity such as delivery and drive-thru services.
– For Administrative/Workspaces:
1) Developers should verge to design multi-functional/mixed-use administrative buildings to combine business and leisure under one roof.
2) Some innovative/creative ideas can help developers meet the new consumer tastes and provide flexible options to buyers, including cloud kitchen and flex buildings for businesses to share spaces and provide proper storage.
3) Now is the time for administrative buildings to be certified as environmentally-friendly to promote healthy and eco-friendly work settings.