EQUITY Properties (Private) Limited is offering individuals and corporates whose deposits were trapped in Interfin Bank an opportunity to liquidate their balances by acquiring residential stands at an upmarket suburb being developed by the property development firm in the capital, Harare.
By Our Staff Reporter
While the residential stands measuring 2 000 square metres on average, are being offered to anyone who can afford them, it is the offer to Interfin Bank depositors that demonstrates the creativity driving some of the country’s entrepreneurs.
Those among Interfin Bank’s depositors who can afford the stands which are going for $18 per square metre have been presented with a unique opportunity to draw down on their balances by investing in real estate. The stands being offered for sale are part of a development called Golden CT situated close to Mt Pleasant Heights.
While details of the arrangement between Equity Properties and Interfin Bank are still sketchy, it would appear that the property developer would use the debit entries to settle its indebtedness with the troubled commercial bank, placed under recuperative curatorship in June this year.
But whatever the case may be, this innovative initiative could go a long way towards assisting Interfin Bank’s desperate clients to extract value today from their deposits and savings by investing in property.
At the same time, it enables the curator to disentangle the bank from some of its obligations.
In terms of this innovative arrangement, an interested Interfin Bank depositor can go into an arrangement with the bank’s curator to transfer funds into Equity Properties’ account with the same bank. Once there is confirmation of the entries, Equity Properties and the buyer would then enter into an agreement of sale and arrange for the transfer of the stand or stands into the name of the buyer.
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From there on, it would be up to the depositor to hold onto the property; develop or dispose of it. By the stroke of a pen, Interfin Bank depositors would be able to liquidate their balances and invest in property which is one of the most enduring investment markets in Zimbabwe and be able to enjoy real value instantly.
Currently, once a bank has been placed under curatorship, the depositor ceases to earn any interest on his or her money trapped in the bank. The depositor might also lose a portion of his or her money in the event that the institution is liquidated because the Deposit Protection Fund only reimburses up to $150 per individual.
A spokesperson for Equity Properties this week said the arrangement was subject to approval by the curator of Interfin Bank in terms of the provisions of Section 55 (20 (e) or Section 56 (5) (b) of the Banking Act.
“After the purchase of such stands, the purchasers or depositors of Interfin Bank can resell the residential stands to anyone else and receive cash or they can keep the residential stands as their investment. Hence the transaction can release early your money from Interfin Bank in line with both your original purpose of having a savings deposit in a bank and the purpose of curatorship,” said the spokesperson.