The Evolution of Housing Designs in Nigeria

Posted by    on  August 22, 2014

I am sure anyone will agree with me when I say there has been a significant change in the architectural design of buildings in Nigeria compared to what we’ve had in years past. This changes *not that we are complaining* can be attributed to many things including the state of the nation and the adoption of westernization along with the need to upgrade the system.

Nigeria is basically a unique country partly because of our cultures and traditions and partly because we are the most populous black country in the world. The country’s new generation of environmentalists such as Architects, Builders, Estate surveyors, Land surveyors and Urban and Regional Planners understand the need for buildings not to only be functionally effective, but also aesthetically beautiful.

Buildings of old were built to accommodate both the extensively large families they had including extended families and other functions such as shops as an additional source of income for the family.

The building types included  Bungalows, One storey buildings, two storey buildings and at most three storey buildings. The designs mainly depended on how large the family was but it also included the class of the patriarch or his position in the community and also how wealthy the family is.

Although this is very similar to what operates today, it is also different in so many ways. Most notable among them is that it seems like Nigerians have decided to reduce the size of some rooms in favor of the saying “less is more” which seems to be working out well for them. By reducing the sizes of such rooms, they have created a whole new avenue for certain newly imported ideas such as the gym, the viewing room, the laundry and other such rooms.

They also seem to have abandoned the notion of courtyards which was very popular in structures of old. The spaces are now being put to other uses such as pools, courts and many more. Impressive as these changes are, most notable is how Nigerians have been able to combine designs of old with new designs which combines functionally and aesthetics in an almost perfect symphony.

One of the most obvious changes that I have noticed is that builders are seeing the value of columns which not only supports the weight of the building but can also add a much needed ambiance to the building. I also like the way the country has started to embrace the green initiative i.e The aesthetic and the functional value of the plants. They give the house a sense of fresh air and they sometimes serve as breathing spaces where relaxation can take place or as I call it “a place to take a sip and watch the sunset”.

Another very notable feature is the different uses to which colours are being used by builders and owners,  long gone are the days when we only paint our houses with brown or cream or grey or some other monotonic colour. They have learnt to mix things up a little which gives the buildings a sense of longing and some,  have gone has far as using marble or brick instead of paints which helps them battle the need for continued re-painting of such property.

I am sure there are other notable changes that have escaped my sight, but i feel the Nigerian developers and Nigerians are seeing the need to keep updating our buildings to suit our new lifestyle and for the continued pursuit of beauty and functionality of our homes.

The Colour Wheel: Colour Coding your Home

Posted by    on  August 15, 2014

Colours or lack of colours,  if you agree with me, makes a lot of difference on how the house will look or how presentable the house will be. I recently had to deal with a colour change for my parent’s house with a very unbearable painter who kept telling my sister and I what to use and what not to use which wouldn’t have been a problem if he was suggesting colours that actually made sense.

One thing I have learnt from the whole experience is that I know absolutely nothing about colours. Sure we were taught the colour wheel in school but nobody ever told me that there were more colours than I could imagine especially when you are planning on painting a house. This process requires careful consideration of what the room would be used for and who is going to live in it or,  if in case of offices, what kind of business would be conducted in the building.

Before the painting of the house started, I was shown a colour pallet that made me rethink my original blue and purple plan for my room. I realized that some parts of the house cannot be painted a certain colour not because they are not aesthetically nice but because of the functionality of the room itself.

You cannot paint a passage “white” or any other easily stained colour and neither can you paint a kitchen with a bright colour especially when you are not using gloss which allows for easy cleaning unlike its counterpart.

Bedroom colours should be colours that invite sleep or relaxation not colours that might help you stay awake all night, reserve that for your study.

The living room is a place where you entertain guests and it should have colours that would easily invite them into your home,  not dull colours that can project depression or any other unwanted feelings.

My future painter might be in trouble in this sense because I might keep disturbing him on what colour pattern I would want for my future home. So single ladies out there or potential married women as the case may be,  should start planning how they will want their apartment to look like or how they would want their houses to look like.

Real Estate Marketing the Professional Way

Posted by    on  November 27, 2013

We have some exciting developments over here at Hutbay. From today, you’ll begin to see them unravelled. One consistent theme you will notice in all our present and future undertakings is our vision to provide information to aid buyers and renters to make better informed decisions, while at the same time, provide cutting-edge tools and platform for agents to market their properties, gain wider exposure and network with other agents.

More and Better Information:
Gone are the days where the only thing you know about a property from an advert is a mere text: “2 bedroom flat for sale at Magodo. N35m”!

Better Information

Project your listings more professionally.

Your consumers want more than that and we are providing you the tools and platform to surpass their imagination.  With the new Hutbay, you can do much more, few of which are:

  • Attach video to your listings
  • “Mapify” your listings
  • A direct web location aggregating all your listings
  • Showcase your reviews and recommendation
  • More branding from company logo to your corporate website  and personal photo
  • Consistent notification by email and/or SMS on how your listings are performing
  • Add brochures, floor plans and fliers
  • Tools to help with email marketing
  • and much more…

You can even add payment plans to your listings to garner more interests and potential deals. All this new feature will go live on Hutbay by December 9th, 2013.

Hutbay Real Estate App for Windows Phone.

Posted by    on  October 8, 2013
Hutbay Windows Phone App

Hutbay Windows Phone App

Hutbay has good news for the increasing number of Windows Phone users (Nokia Lumias, HTC 8s, etc) and it is an update to our Windows Phone app. In line with our goal to make property search in Nigeria free of hassles is the bringing of property information to your fingertips; one way to do this is to put it on your phone. And gradually, we are achieving our objective. With this new release, we hope you will find it more fun searching for properties and lots of interesting features to justify downloading the app.

With this new update, we provide a faster and intuitive way of viewing all properties available for sale and for rent in a particular area. Users can also make custom search tailored to their preference or based on selected parameters (e.g. property type, number of bedrooms, maximum price etc). Navigation to each property details (where you can view more information and photos, call or drop the agent in charge of the property a note, share the property with family, friends, and professionals via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and even SMS) is made faster.

Just like the recent update to the  Windows 8 app, you can now create property alert, send real estate related enquiries to agents and feedback as regard making the app better. The app works with Windows  7.5 upwards.

Below are some snapshot of the app on a Nokia Lumia 800.

Click here to download the app or search for “Hutbay” in the Windows Phone Store. We promise to keep you informed as we roll out more features to our existing and upcoming apps.

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook  to get more updates or drop us a note at for further enquiry.

Introducing Agent Profile Page

Posted by    on  October 7, 2013
Profile Page with Unique URL

Profile Page with Unique URL

When agents signed up on Hutbay, we don’t just want to help them market their properties but we also want to help them better manage their brands. Branding is very important and wherever your business is represented, you want your brand to be well presented.

Agent profile page is part of Hutbay’s strategy to helping agents manage their professional profile and company brand online. On this profile page you can see the agent’s passport-sized photo, her company logo, her ratings, company information including her company’s website and link to view all properties the agent’s have on Hutbay. You can even Continue reading

Hutbay Launches A Redesigned Windows 8 App.

Posted by    on  September 23, 2013
Searching for properties using the built-in Charm Search.

Search Using the In-Built Search Charm

There is an increasing shift in internet consumption from Desktop browsers to mobile devices like Phones and Tablets. Therefore, it is expected that apps should be developed to address this changing pattern in internet consumtption. More and more Nigerians are on the go than ever before, and considering the ease and increasing rate at which people use mobile devices nowadays,  developing a mobile platform is imperative especially in the online property search industry.

At Hutbay, we are committed to removing the stress and hassles from your property hunt. Though we already have an app for Windows 8, we felt we could do better by taking advantage of  some key windows 8 design patterns to help users feel more at home when using the app. It’s our pleasure therefore to announce Continue reading

Coming Soon: Redesigned Hutbay App for Windows 8 Devices

Posted by    on  September 11, 2013
Hutbay Windows 8 Search Results

A cleaner interface

Hutbay Windows 8 App Details

More on swiping. Users can just swipe left or right to view more details

Hutbay app for Windows 8 devices is been redesigned to take better advantage of Windows 8  design philosophies. Expect a release any-time between now and next week! The current version of the app will be replaced with this new version and all users who have Hutbay App on their Win8 devices should receive update notice as soon as the new version is available. You can still download the current version, though, at least till next week! The download link to the current version can be found here.

The major changes centred on presentation and taking advantage of the Windows 8 platform like the in-built Search, Sharing and App bar. Continue reading

What’s Hutbay?

Posted by    on  September 3, 2013

Finding real estate and homes shouldn’t be a hard task in a world with stunning technologies, powerful computing devices and faster internet connectivity. Software, by the way, thrives on data and finding and analysing these data is simply what software is good at. By extension therefore, using software to solve the problem of finding real estate is just natural. Continue reading

Microsoft BizSpark Featured Startup!

Posted by    on  September 3, 2013

On the 8th of August, Hutbay got featured on the Microsoft BizSpark site. We received a lot of pageviews that very day from across the atlantic. We liked it!

To those who may not be familiar with it, Microsoft BizSpark program provides technology, support, visibility, and community to promising startups and entrepreneurs across the world. Below is the full post as it appears on BizSpark site:  Continue reading

Welcome Home!

Posted by    on  September 2, 2013

It’s been gruelling months of hard work for us here at Hutbay that the idea of having a company blog was relegated to the background!

However, with our increasing marketing outreach and the need to provide a formal means of communication with our users and fans, we felt it is now the right time to have one. We will blog here on regular basis on interesting happenings at Hutbay and other related matters.

Do check back every now and then and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and on Facebook to know when we have new blog posts.