5 key things to know before investing in Nigeria

Who is selling the land? 

Buying land or real estate in Nigeria can be very tricky and confusing. To avoid litigation or fraudulent land sales, it is best to buy from a real estate agent who will guarantee the safety of your purchase. Most real estate agents work directly with property developers rather than “Omoniles”.

“Omoniles” land sale is usually cheaper but with many unverified claims which may lead to loss of money. This type of sale means that you do not know the true owner of the land or whether the land has already been sold to several other parties.

What type of legal document comes with the sale?

For such a quest, one needs to work closely with a property lawyer or a surveyor who can ask the correct questions on your behalf. Does the purchase comes with a C of O or “Excision in Process”?

What is the difference between C of O ( Certificate of Occupancy) and “Excision in Process” land title?

A Certificate of Occupancy, also known as the C of O is a document issued by state governments in Nigeria to landowners and property buyers as a legitimate proof of ownership. This document also spells out what the land can be used for; residential, commercial or mixed development.

“Excision in Process” land title: A piece of land that is in the process of being approved by the Governor. It usually has an Excision file number which tells you that the process is registered and underway. This process could take as long as 18 months in some areas. Most people who landbank are attracted to these types of investments because they tend to be much cheaper than land with C of O. 

What are the infrastructure already in place or the future plans for these?

Consider the location, the neighbourhood, the roads, accessibility, landmarks, and security. 

What is the quality of soil?

Is the land a dry land of needs filling? This will determine the amount you will need to spend on the foundation to make your building sound and safe.

Who do I pay money to?

Never pay directly into the real estate agent’s account. Always pay directly into the account of the property developer with the corporate name on the land or development.