Posts in category "buying & selling"

If we must move forward as a nation, we need to whittle down a penchant for raw use of power, coercion and extortion. A while ago it was reported that Soldiers were used to stop Ikoyi’s 850 capacity car park project been carried out by the Lagos state government because of a dispute over ownership of the piece of land. Incidentally, the Lagos State government is not immuned from the use of bravado, force and fiat while ejecting folks whom they deem to have ran foul of the law. As they say, what goes around comes around. In our clime, it is common practice to see folks using their positions to intimidate or frustrate other people. It beggars belief that in a country that lacks an encouraging mortgage regime, it is a harrowing experience before people can build their own houses because some so-called omoniles and corrupt, over-zealous town planning authorities are bent on frustrating prospective home builders.

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As I wrote in Part (1) of this series, there is a plethora of nasty tales resulting from paucity of due diligence before buying or renting a property in Nigeria. As we say in our local parlance over here, "shine your eye well well" before you part with your hard earned money for a property or before you sign the dotted lines. Here are issues, booby traps you must consider and sort out before you take the plunge:

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We wrote in one of our previous articles that arrangements are in advanced stage by the Lagos State Government to start issuing electronic C of O's to landowners in Lagos State. This step will not only make the process transparent but it will also check the fraudulent activities of unscrupulous estate agents, surveyors and the so-called omoniles. Herein are the required documents needed to obtain the electronic C of O:

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The wanton incidents of prospective property, land buyers been duped of their hard earned money can be attributed to the paucity of doing a due diligence investigation prior to paying for the envisaged property or parcel of land. This is because many survey plans, deeds of assignment, certificates of occupancy, government allocation letters, and government gazettes bandied about by fraudulent property sellers out there, are forged. It takes an expert to figure this out. There are nasty tales of people falling prey to the whims and caprices of desperate and unscrupulous so-called land sellers, omoniles, and quack surveyors. Prospective land buyers are strongly advised in their own interest to stringently investigate the genuineness, validity or otherwise of a property before parting with their money.

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If feelers from the Lagos State Government is anything to go by, the State is poised to launch a state-of-the-art Geographic Information System (GIS) which it believes will facilitate issuance of Land titles such as Land Information Certificate's, Consent Letter's, Certificates of Occupancy (C of O) amongst others.

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Here are some things to consider before you buy any piece of land in Nigeria.

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CASE STUDY NO.1 (DODGY SURVEYORS)

Everyone knows that I have been a foremost promoter of doing a survey plan search with a surveyor before buying and if possible going to the land with an Alausa Surveyor to confirm whether it is free from acquisition or not. Well I also fell victim of dodgy surveyors I recommended to people that ended up colluding with the omoniles to decieve buyers and me. Such instances occured in Okun Ajah, Mopo Ibeju, Sangotedo, Ikorodu, lafiaji, Eputu, Akowonjo and Mowe.

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Quite a while I wrote an article on Nairaland relating to property issues and to be honest I've learnt more tricks from land fraudsters in 2010 than I could ever imagined. I thought I knew every trick in the book and how to deal with them but they kept on coming at me like a heavy downpour and I couldn't catch my breath in most situations. In fact it was so bad that I almost gave up handling property matters and questioned my competence in some instances. I have taken a long time to soul search and ponder how to make 2011 more successful and also let people know the tricks and inherent dangers in not doing a thorough search for a property and also lowering your guard in trusting people when it comes to property matters because once they see that slight opportunity that you trust them, they will hit you hard.

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There are a great number of things to look out for and keep in mind when buying a new home or land property especially in a place like Lagos Nigeria. The following 6 steps are crucial and will serve as guideline while you make that investment in property in Nigeria.

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