Ghana has a complicated titling system
Taxation Researcher | June 08, 2020
How high are realtors´ and lawyers´ fees in Ghana? What about other property purchase costs?
|Legal Fees||3% - 10%||buyer|
|Stamp Duty||0.25% - 1%||buyer|
|Costs paid by buyer||3.25% - 11%|
|Costs paid by seller||5%|
|ROUNDTRIP TRANSACTION COSTS||8.25% - 16%|
| See Footnotes
Source: Global Property Guide
How difficult is the property purchase process in Ghana?
There are no restrictions on foreigners buying property in Ghana. However, different kinds of land, some of which cannot be privately owned.
There are four types of land in Ghana: Government Land, Vested Land, Customary/Stool Land, and Family/Private Land.
To acquire Government Land or Vested Land, an application must be filed with the Executive Secretary of Lands Commission or the Regional Lands Officer, depending on the location of the land.
Customary Land belongs to different Stools in Ghana, who have the authority to grant the particular customary land for which they are responsible. The 1992 Constitution states that there must be no free hold interest granted in land.
Customary Land granted to private individuals or families before the 1992 Constitution is now considered private land. In this case, the buyer has to go directly to the owner of the land.
The services of a real estate agent and a lawyer are needed in acquiring property. A title search is very important to determine the ownership and kind of land the buyer is interested in. Once all agreements have been settled, a Deed of Conveyance, or an appropriate instrument of transfer (indenture), is prepared by the lawyer. Upon signing, the title is transferred to the buyer, who, at the same time, pays for the property.
The title is registered at the Lands Commission Secretariat. Property registration takes around 48 days to accomplish, with around five procedures.
Legal fees are regulated by the Ghana Bar Association. The following amounts are prescribed legal fees for conveyance:
|PROPERTY VALUE||MAXIMUM RATE|
|Up to US$11,000||0%|
|US$11,500 - US$40,000||10%|
|US$40,000 - US$85,000||7.5%|
|US$85,000 - US$180,000||5%|
Stamp duty is levied on the value of the property at progressive rates, from 0.25% to 1%.
|PROPERTY VALUE,GHS (US$)||RATE|
|Up to 10,000 (US$2,928)||0.25%|
|10,000 - 50,000 (US$14,641)||0.50%|
|Over 50,000 (US$14,641)||1%|
Footnotes to Transaction Costs Table
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.
Ghana uses Ghanaian Cedi. Exchange rate is at US$1=GHC9,556.41 as of 5th July 2006.