UGANDA, Entebbe | Real Muloodi News | Susan Byereeta fell in love with a plot of land when she was a young girl. When she grew up, she was able to purchase it and transform it into a multi-billion property. Susan presently manages a multi-story guest home in Seguku Lubowa, along Entebbe-Nfufu Road, known as NL-Josephine’s Apartments.
The Genesis of it all
Susan’s family had leased a plot of land for many years, using it for subsistence farming.
But as Susan got older, she began to fantasise about buying the plot and turning it into a lavish retreat for visitors.
“I liked the fact that it was not too far from the city, the airport and yet far enough from the noise and traffic of the city. It is also still surrounded by the old homesteads giving it a homey feel,” she says.
Making a Dream Come True
Susan could hardly believe her luck when the owner of the property placed it up for sale. At that time, Susan had graduated from law school and had been working for four years. Susan felt she was getting close to acquiring her deam property.
Even though Susan did not have the seller’s asking price, she still expressed her interest in buying the plot of land.
“I told my father that I was interested in the land and he offered to handle the transaction since they had a cordial relationship stretching from the 1990s. Although he agreed to negotiations about the price, I still did not have enough to pay for the land. Fortunately, he agreed to let me pay it off in three installments stretched over a three-month period,” says Susan.
As she organised the remaining sum, she deposited USh45 million.
“In 2016, I got a promotion which also doubled my income which enabled me to pay off the balance in the agreed time without resorting to loans,” she says.
After acquiring the land, Susan started assembling funds to develop the property. According to Susan, she wanted to design her home after a guest house she had stayed at and fallen in love with while travelling aboard.
“In 2010, I had an opportunity to live in a certain guest house somewhere in the UK while furthering my studies. I was inspired by the setup and the way guest house owner ran the business, so I wanted to replicate it here in Uganda,” she says.
It took Susan five years in total to finish building her dream guesthouse.
She hired an architect to draught the vision she had in mind. The ideal blueprint took a year to create.
The next challenge was finding time to oversee the project. Her legal career meant she was extremely busy and often travelled out of town. Fortunately for Susan, her mother took up this duty for her.
“My mother took up the project with enthusiasm, from personally going to hardware shops to purchase construction materials to supervising workers and even mediating wrangles with neighbours she was tireless and committed,” she shares.
Susan honoured her mother’s efforts by naming the opulent business Josephine Natural Living after her.
Supervising construction is not an easy task. Susan and her mother had to learn to be in several places at once to keep a watchful check on the building supplies to prevent waste or mismanagement.
Perhaps the biggest challenge Susan faced was keeping the cost of construction under budget. Cost control is extremely difficult during a construction project because there are so many unexpected factors that can result in additional expenses.
“Even with my mother’s keen supervision, we overshot our budget and the project shut down several times for months. I had to rely on a salary loan to fund the project to completion. But I know I could not have done it without my mother’s encouragement, pragmatism and patience,” Susan shares.
“Do not be afraid to ask your parents for help if possible; they can help you negotiate as my father did for me, make better decisions or even act as a guarantor on loan. But most importantly, commit to the project and do all that is required to make the dream come true,” Susan advises.
Susan finally opened her guest house to the public in 2022. NL-Josephine’s Apartments provide a peaceful setting, contemporary facilities, and spacious rooms.
Each unit is fitted with a balcony, a satellite flat-screen TV, a dining area, a well-fitted kitchen and a private bathroom with shower. A microwave, an oven and stovetop are also offered, as well as an electric tea pot.
“We specially tailor to our guests’ lifestyles – all the way from how much furniture they need to how often they want housekeeping,” says Susan. “A dedicated Member Experience Manager will see to any requests during our guests’ stay,” she adds.
Susan claims her establishment is the first serviced residence in Uganda to offer PURE Certified allergy-friendly apartments.
Her accommodations also include WiFi and free private parking, and they offer a range of breakfast options to include Continental, Full English/Irish, and Vegan.
NL-Josephine’s Apartments is located 4.8 miles from Pope Paul Memorial. Rubaga Cathedral is 5.2 miles from the guest house, while Kabaka’s Palace is 5.5 miles from the property. The nearest airport is Entebbe International, 19 miles from the accommodation, and the property offers a free airport shuttle service.
Susan expresses her gratitude to God for fulfilling her goal by quoting Jeremiah 17:7 “But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him.”
When buying your first house, she says there are several challenges to conquer. Saving enough money for a deposit is one of the biggest obstacles.
When it’s your first time to harbour property ownership aspirations, you should make a few short-term compromises to help you save money. This will help you financially when you eventually locate your ideal home.
WATCH: NL Josephines Apartments/ fully furnished with WIFI in 🇺🇬 Entebbe
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