Real Estate & Property in Nigeria
Searching For Real Estate in Nigeria?
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Commercial land for sale in Nigeria are in abundance in places like Abuja, Lagos, Port Harcourt, Enugu, Ibadan, Anambra, Calabar, Kaduna, Kano, Uyo , Kwara, and Osun at the price range of 8,000,000 naira to 12,000,000,000 naira.
Commercial properties plays a huge role in any business enterprise. Apart from giving your business a formal look, it highlights the workspace of a company. Commercial properties range from office space to shops, warehouses e.t.c.
Plots of cheap land for sale in Nigeria can be found in all states of the country. These lands are fertile for farming and are as well blessed with many resources yet to be harnessed. Plots of affordable land for sale in Nigeria are priced within the range of N200,000 to N2,500,000,000,000 (N2.5 trillion naira). This price range is subject to the size of the land as well as the location.
In time past, the wealth of a man or a community was measured by the number of farmlands owned. Wars were prompted by the quest of men to expand their territories through the acquisition of land.
Several factors such as population explosion, increased cost of production and use of social infrastructures, the declining value of Naira, and current economic meltdown has over time caused an increase in the prices of land acquisition. Yet despite the increase in prices of land, research has proven that land acquisition in real estate is still one of the oldest, surest and safest investment not just in Nigeria but in the world.
BUYING AND SELLING OF LAND IN NIGERIA
With the current economic recession in the country, people are seeking various profitable ventures to make money or as alternative means of livelihood. Buying and selling of land has proven to be one of such profitable ventures. Buying and selling of land in this context refers to buying or acquiring plots of land, owning them for a while for it to really appreciate and then sell it(sometimes over five times its original price!)
- Buying and selling of land has gradually become a lucrative real estate investment. This is so because land is a major factor of production and an asset as well: and like any other asset does not depreciate in the real sense but rather appreciates.
- Though land is a natural resource, population explosion and the increase in manufacturing and use oif infrastructure has led to the increase in prices of land not just in Nigeria but all over the world. So, you may ask,since the price of land has increased, why buy and sell land? I will tell you why.
- Land has an infinite useful lifespan.
- It is a major factor of production and with increasing need for production in response to increasing population, there will always be demand for land.
- It is highly profitable. An affordable land for sale today can be sold in five years time for over ten times the original price paid for it.
- There is low competition.
- Land appreciates over time
- It can be used for further production or for other purposes.
LAND SIZES IN NIGERIA
Most times we hear terms like ‘a plot of land’ but don’t really understand what it means. Personally, I didn’t know the differences between the various terms used in land sale to after proper research. Land sizes simply refers to land areas that are mapped out for sale or other purposes. For one to invest in land, one ought to be conversant with the various terms associated with the buying and selling of land especially the standard of measurement.
One major word that comes to mind when talking about land is ‘plot’. What is a plot? According to the Merriam wevbster dictionary, a plot is a measured piece of land. According to Nigeria land division, the size of a standard plot of land is 50*100ft (ft=feets) and can accommodate a standard house with a small compound. These now brings us to the standard of measurements.
- In Nigeria, there are two standards of measurement used. These measurements are affected by factors such as human, environmental and developmental factors. The two major standards of measurements of land are;
The metric measurement (metres, hectares)
This is the least used standard of measurement because of the confusion of conversion from feet to metres. But it is still usedby literate individuals. A hectare is a land measuring 100m*100m or 328ft* 328ft or 10,000sqm. A hectare of land is equivalent to two and a half acres of land or 15 plots of land.
- The imperial measurement (feets, acres)
This is a widely used unit of land measurement used by land sellers. An acre is equivalent to the size of a standard football field and is equivalent to 6 plots of land each measuring 6*120ft.
COST OF LAND IN NIGERIA
As mentioned earlier, the prices of land has gone up over the years.Yet, the cost of land in one area or state differs from the cost of land in another area. For example, the cost of a land in gwarinpa area in Abuja is different from the cost of same land size in karu. There are various factors influencing the cost of land in Nigeria and such factors includes:
- Location of the land
- Land topography
- Accessibility to economic activity such as school, hospitals etc.
- Availability of infrastructures in the area such as electricity, water etc
- Transport linkage
- Land use permitted in the land premises.
- Purpose of acquiring the land
WHAT TO KNOW BEFORE BUYING A LAND IN NIGERIA
Many have sang the song “oh, had I known” after buying a land, why so? Because they didn’t probe the validity of the land before paying for it. There are things one must do before buying a land especially in our present day society where most people are out to make quick cash. So what should you do when you are interested in any land that has been put up for sale?
- Have a budget. Do not budget for the land alone, also budget for other fees such as legal fees, agency fees, survey plan, cost of of putting up a fence in order to secure your land properly, cost of registering the land with the government.
- Do a proper investigation : This will help to reveal hidden costs such as unpaid taxes, real owner of the land especially if land is owned individually to avoid extended family issues or inheritance issues,
Probe the validity and authenticity of the property
- Check owner’s documents carefully. Things to check fro in owner’s documents includes; certificate of occupancy, power of attorney (if you are not buying directly from the owner of the land),survey plan, tax clearance certificate, deed of assignment)
- Do a physical inspection of the land and also do a land survey.
- Assess the land further to discover its price in relation to surrounding land or lands of same size in other areas
- Ensure that the purpose of land acquisition does not contravene the property law in the area. E.g; buying a land for residential use in a district or industrial area.
- Investigate accessibility to infrastructures or any advantage listed by the seller. Do not listen to the seller’s opinion alone, that’s the essence of investigation and survey in the first place- to seek the opinions of others.
- Enlist the help of a good property lawyer
- Put all land transactions in writing and document appropriately.
WHAT TO DO AFTER BUYING A LAND IN NIGERIA
- Ensure you collect the genuine receipt after full payment for the land.
- Ensure you sign the necessary agreement
- Register your land with the government
- Do a land survey
- Take possession of your land immediately after payment by constructing a fence around it. It may not be a big fence, just a small fence to demarcate your land from the surrounding lands and to ward off prospective buyers.
REAL ESTATE BUSINESS IN NIGERIA
When one hears the term ‘real estate” what comes to mind is property. What is actually meant by real estate? According to the dictionary, real estate refers to property consisting of land and the building on it, along with its natural resources. In other words, it is buildings or housings in general terms.
The Real Estate industry in Nigeria is challenging but profitable. It is challenging because of the tedious tasks required to effectively implement housing policies, high cost of developing land and the huge economic potentials of the Nigerian housing sector.
Research reveals that over 90% of houses currently existing were constructed through unstructured self help, thus the need for the government to meet its targets and also make available to real estate investors the available funds and policies that would make estate development easier. This is because real estate can be a source of economic growth for the nation as it increases the gross domestic product of the nation.
Real estate can be categorized according to usage as commercial, industrial or residential. In real estate, land could be improved or unimproved. Improved land refers to land that is developed and has certain utilities and services attached to it such as buildings, source of water supply, etc. Unimproved land, on the other hand refers to land that is still fallow or barren or land that lacks basic utilities necessary to use it for other purposes. This article focuses on the buying and selling of unimproved land in Nigeria.
LAND FOR SALE IN NIGERIA
COST OF LAND SURVEY IN NIGERIA
Land survey is one of the things to do before buying a land. Land surveying refers to the technique or science of determining, measuring and recording the boundaries and features of a land area in order to establish ownership. Land survey helps you as a landowner to to know and understand exactly what you owns,where you may build, alter or improve upon and your boundary.
The cost of land survey in Nigeria is regulated by the Nigerian institution of surveyors. According to reports in April 2017 by the Nigeria Institution of Surveyors(NIS), Lagos chapter, the cost of surveying a plot of land in Lagos was increased by about 300 percent and the new fees took effect on April1st, 2017. For instance, Ikorodu Badagry Ojo and Ajeromi Ifelodun local government that was N120,000 is now N350,000 while Lagos Island, Ikeja which was N300,000 is now going for N1 million. Lagos is one of the maor cities in Nigeria and can be used as a test run for other cities in Nigeria. However, research still indicates that the cost may vary from place to place depending on the location of the land.
TYPES OF LAND DOCUMENTS IN NIGERIA
Investment in land is now a leading profitable real estate investment. But unlike in the olden days when men kept their words and witnesses were faithful and true, one needs protect one’s investment in our days; especially with the decline in the economy of our nation. How does one do that? By verifying the necessary documents before the purchase of a land. It is imperative to know that in our times where some dubious individuals can sell one land to several people and where there is problem of inheritance, one needs to know the types of land documents in Nigeria in order to verify the ownership of the seller.
There are four documents that validates ownership of a land;
One should have a receipt of payment for land purchased and a bankdraft or cheque to prove payment in case of trouble shooters. It is thus not advisable to pay for land in cash: It is preferable to pay in the bank.
Certificate of occupancy (C of O)
This is the most important document to look out for. A certificate of occupancy validates the ownership status of any land in Nigeria. It is a legal document indicating that the owner of a land has been granted statutory right of occupancy by the governor of the state where the land is situated in an urban area or a customary right of occupancy by the local government chairman if the land is situated in a non urban area.
It is usually delivered by to the owner of the land by the appropriate government attesting to the owner’s title to the land in accordance with applicable laws.
A certificate of occupancy is the evidence of the right of occupancy.
Deed of assignment or conveyance
A deed is a document in writing which furnishes evidence or gives information about some facts agreed upon between persons on quality paper which is signed, sealed and delivered. A deed must be demanded for after conclusion of any land transaction between a buyer and the seller of the land in question.
Features of a deed includes;
A durable paper( Eg; A4 paper, Indenture paper, and parchment);
Names and signatures of the parties involved ;
Sealing: This is an ancient requirement for a deed and is usually in the form of a red wafer fixed to the deed. So does not sealing a deed in modern days make a deed invalid? According to section 127 of the Evidence Act; when any document purporting to be and stamped as a deed, appears or is proved to be or have signed and duly attested, it will be presumed to be or have been sealed and delivered, although no impression of a seal appears on it.
Delivery: this is an act of conveying intention to transfer title, and be bound by the transaction. Delivery is signified by the passing of an interest or right and not necessarily by the parting with the physical possession.
Attestation: This is a third party confirming the execution of the instruments of the parties.
A deed of assignment is an agreement where an assignor states his promise that from the date of the assignment or any date stipulated therein, the assignor assigns his ownership in that land to the assignee. On the other hand, a deed of conveyance transfers the ownership of land to a buyer. A deed of conveyance transfers the ownership, interest, rights, and titles of the land from the seller to the buyer of the land. A deed of assignment is usually given when it has to do with lands owned by the government while deeds of conveyance are obtainable when land is bought directly from the owners of the land as in rural areas. Deeds are usually recorded and authenticated in a land registry to show proof that the land has exchanged hands.
A survey plan
This is a document that gives an accurate measurement of the boundaries and description of a land area. It helps to reveal the true ownership of a land. a survey plan must contain the following information:
The name of the owner of the land surveyed
The address or description of the land surveyed
The size of the land surveyed
The size of the land surveyed
The beacon numbers
The name of the surveyor who surveyed the land
A stamp showing if the land is free from government acquisition or not
The importance of a land survey plan includes the following:
It helps to authenticate ownership of the land
It helps the buyer to view at a glance the legal boundaries and specific measurements of the land.
It helps you to ascertain if the land you intend to acquire has not been designated for the government in the future. This will help to avoid your land been demolished in the future.
It helps to protect your property rights and gives you confidence.
Power of attorney
This is an instrument in writing usually but not necessarily a deed, by which the principal called “donor” appoints an agent called “donee” and confers authority on him to perform certain specified acts or kinds of acts on behalf of the principal. This enables the donee to represent the donor in legal procedures. This is a very important land document especially when you are not buying directly from the owner of the land. It helps you to know and verify any other person assigned to act on behalf of the owner of the land.
Tax clearance certificate
A tax clearance certificate is a document that protects a buyer from any outstanding land tax liability incurred by the seller or the previous owner. It is a certificate that states whether there is any land tax owing on a property or land.
This is a written history of all recorded and relevant documents that pertains to a specific land for sale. It includes conveyances, transfers, wills, liens, and other relevant documents. It is usually given to the intended buyer by the seller or owner of the land. Why do you need an abstract title? It helps the buyer to seek clarification from the land registry. With the abstract title, the buyer can go to the land registry and verify the documents listed in the abstract title and all the other land documents mentioned above (with the exception of the receipts) This helps to determine the status of the land.
Note: The afore listed documents should not just be verified when buying a land, one ought to have them too after buying a land to validate ownership.
A land agreement is also known as a purchase agreement. It is a document in writing that gives a detail of land transaction or purchase. It is usually a way for the parties involved in a land transaction to work out details of a final buy and sell agreement. It is usually obtainable in the preliminary negotiations of land and when presented in the court of law reveals the intents of the parties involved. It maybe non binding as any of the party involved can back out at the last minute especially where one is not content with the terms of the agreement. A letter of agreement is different from a contract of sale of land. The former is used in preliminary negotiations while the latter is drafted when land has been fully purchased. A contract sale of land is more binding and is seen as a legal document that proves the transfer of ownership of a specific land from one person/party to another.
Usually people solicit the aid of a property lawyer to write a letter of agreement.
Contents of a letter of agreement includes;
Create a title for the agreement or contract
Date of writing
Legal name of the parties involved
Description of the property and its location (and possibly address)
Specify the owner of any personal property on the land
Specify assignment of title to land
The purchase price of the land
Transactions closing date.
Seller’s and buyer’s covenant
Default and breach of agreement
Signature of the parties involved.
Note: use simple English and avoid use of words that are ambiguous.
SAMPLE DEED OF AGREEMENT IN NIGERIA
As with other types of deeds, a deed of agreement is usually signed, witnessed, sealed and delivered to effect a conveyance or transfer of land rights and ownership or to create legal obligation or contract between the parties involved. It is usually binding on both parties.