Before buying a property in Nigeria, there are things you must know to prevent yourself from being defrauded.
The Land Use Act of 1978 converted all land to State Land.
The Governor of the State is responsible for the management of this land on behalf of the people. Therefore, land cannot be owned privately. You can only obtain leases from the State for a maximum of 99 years for the use of land.
2. You need the Governor´s consent for the assignment of title to use, occupy, and improve property with a statutory certificate.
This certificate does not include rights to sell, give, or sub-let, which requires further consent from the State Governor.
A peculiarity about purchase of property in Nigeria, particularly in Lagos, is the Consent Fee. The logic is that the state government is the owner of land and therefore any change in ownership or assignment, in case of a lease, should have the consent of the Governor.
There is also a Capital Gains Tax levied at 10% of the difference between the sale price and the original acquisition tax. The Ministry of Finance assesses this.
So you have seen the property you wish to own, before purchasing, it is important to make sure that consent from the Governor is obtained for the sale. No land can be “sold” without this consent.
3. Sale of real estate does not involve actual selling and purchasing.
There is only the transfer of rights from one person to another. This transaction is usually called an ´assignment´. The seller assigns the rights to use and occupy the land to the buyer.
After the transaction, the buyer applies for a new (statutory) certificate under his name. In this case, the seller acts as the assigner, and the buyer is the assignee.
The buyer/assignee´s lawyer checks the title and other documents presented by the seller/assigner before continuing with the transaction. It is better to be safe, since there are several restrictions and conditions that come with a title, and the buyer has to make sure of what s/he is getting.
There are even instances where the assigner is selling land that s/he does not own.
4. Purchasing property in Nigeria is not without risks – expropriation and others.
Two laws make land ownership uncertain in Nigeria. Although these laws have their counterpart in most countries, it is the implementation that really matters.
The Petroleum Act of 1969 and Land Use Act of 1978 allow the government to take over land under the state´s right to eminent domain. The compensation scheme covers only the “unexhausted improvements” to the land but not the land itself.
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The value is also fixed to a government rate which was set in the year the law was created. These factors combined with corruption and years of autocratic rule, mean that uncompensated expropriation of property is common.
5. Another thing you must be careful about is the mode of payment.
A few transparent and reliable Real Estate Agency in Nigeria like Zoab Properties would allow you to go through an escrow financial institution if you wish.
When your money is ready, You send it to your desired Financial where only you can access it. Once the funds is confirmed available. You will receive all the duplicate of the necessary documents to be confirmed by your Lawyer or Legal team. And once this is done. The acquisition is seamless and you are at peace.
The round trip transaction costs include all costs of buying and then re-selling a property – lawyers´ fees, notaries´ fees, registration fees, taxes, agents´ fees, etc.
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Zoab Properties is doing things differently concerning how to safely acquire House property in Nigeria. For more info you can easily click the floating whatsapp chat or drop you phone number by clicking the chat button at the bottom right corner of this page.