To many, buying a piece of property in Nigeria seems harder than climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, well it is not as hard as that. Owning a home in one of the choicest cities in the country like Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Calabar and the likes can be a time-consuming and expensive investment so you have to be extra careful. You need to know what to look out for in a house and also the buying process as well before you settle on a building. To help you join the ever-growing list of landlords in Nigeria we will guide you through the home buying process in Nigeria.
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Prepare your budget
Before you set out to buy a house in any city in Nigeria, you need to have a budget. A lot of people set out to get real estate without properly setting out money or knowing exactly what they can afford. Buying a house might be the biggest purchase of your life so it is not the same as buying a dress or a new phone. Without a budget, you might end up buying on impulse, and sometimes spend more than necessary. From legal fees for buying a house Nigeria to property levies to agency fees, there are extra and sometimes hidden costs you need to be aware of.
Understand the nature of the property
Buying a property translates into you investing in real estate irrespective if the house is for personal use. As an investor, you want to get the best value for your money and that often translates to the best return on investment. Before purchasing a home in Nigeria, you want to evaluate the potential growth in investment in a particular area before you throw your hard earned money at it. You need to choose the type of property and location wisely.
Research properties and get an agent
It is not compulsory you hire an agent before going out to look for properties but using one will definitely help you a lot. Trained real estate professionals can use their wealth of knowledge skills and experience to help you buy the best property for you. You can search for properties on Nigeria’s largest real estate platform, ToLet.com.ng and find real estate agents and realtors with properties you are going to like in your preferred location.
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Make thorough search and compare
When you find a home in Nigeria that catches your fancy and you can afford, don’t be quick to make a down payment. Ensure you visit the property and inspect the building and the environment. Check for signs of structural damage or things that may need fixing. It is sometimes necessary to do the inspection with someone who is knowledgeable in property quality, two eyes are better than one and that person may see what you did not see. You’ll be able to renegotiate the price or not buy if you found something bad about the property. If after inspection you still love the house, investigate the house, find out the who the owner of the property is, who is selling the property, who the previous owners were, why the house was put up for sale etc.
Verify the documents
If you are confident with the house, you need to confirm the documents of the house is authentic and also verify that the documents were complete. If you are getting a house in Lagos for example, the Bureau of Lands of Lagos state will know if the property is registered as a government acquired property and if there are pending litigation or issues on the property. Verification is a very important thing as it confirms the validity of your purchase and saves you from fraudsters or any future heartache with the government.
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Make payment and collect all receipts and documents
With everything in place, you should make all payments regarding the house with your lawyer. After making payment, make all efforts to collect every related receipt forms. Documents required for land purchase in Nigeria include the deed of assignment, contract of sale, letter of allocation, affidavits, purchase receipt, deed of gifts, letters of administration, e.t.c.
File your new purchase with the state government
This step is important as it legally makes you the new owner of the property. If the property already has a Certificate of Occupancy, you’ve got Governor’s consent for it which is great. If it does not, then you start processing your Certificate of Occupancy as soon as possible.