Strongly pro-landlord rental market

November 20, 2006

Rents: Can landlord and tenant freely agree rents in Nigeria?

There are no effective rent controls in Nigeria. Lagos has a "Rent Control of Residential Premises Law" but this is not implemented.

Deposits

Rents are paid, in advance, for two to three years. Some landlords accept advance payments for only one to 1½ years; however, in that case rents are significantly higher.

What rights do landlords and tenants have in Nigeria, especially as to duration of contract, and eviction?

Contracts last for the duration of the advance payment, typically, one to three years. An option to renew with rent adjustment can be included in the contract. If the tenant pre-terminates a contract, no refunds are made. Subleasing can be included in the contract.

How effective is the
Nigerian legal system?

EVICTION FOR NON-PAYMENT OF RENT

Duration until completion of service of process 32
Duration of trial 126
Duration of enforcement 208
Total Days to Evict Tenant 366
Courts: The Lex Mundi Project

Under the 1997 Recovery of Possession Law of Lagos State and the 1991 Recovery of Possession Edict 1991 of Rivers State, only the court can order the eviction of tenants. The court process is slow and cumbersome. Landlords evict tenants using an assortment of tricks, phony legal cases, intimidation, locking out tenants, and physically throwing them of their property.

Nigeria lagros propertiesThe State of Lagos offers a Citizens Mediation Centre for resolving landlord and tenant issues. If mediation fails, the parties involved can seek redress in court.

Legislation

The Land Use Act of 1978 covers the use and rental of public lands. The State of Lagos has an un-enforced Rent Control of Residential Premises Law and Recovery of Possession Law. The Rivers State likewise has an unimplemented Recovery of Possession Edict.