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Every Nigeria has a dream of owning or renting a property in a porch locations but only a few have the resources to make that dream come through. It elevates the social status and it is considered proof of wealth and provides a source of income to the property owners. Properties in cities like Lagos, Abuja, and Port Harcourt are considered to be the first choice of investors to buy properties. Buying a home in these cities is a no small investment, the risks and benefits associated with capital intensive investment should be considered together with other factors.
we are going to discuss the 10 most important factors to be considered before purchasing or renting your dream home. Whether you prefer a modernized urban loft/roof space or a sprawling suburban home with a dwarf fence, everybody hopes to find a home that feels like it was made specifically for our family.

  1. Location:


The location of property I often an afterthought when it comes to purchasing or renting a property, but it should be at the forefront of buyers’ minds. It is one thing about the property that cannot be altered. You could demolish a house and build a new one from the foundation but you cannot change the location. Location remains the first question that comes to the buyers’ mind once the buyer has made up their mind to purchase a property. In most cases, the choice of location is determined by what you need the property for. Ordinarily, property purchased for commercial use is ideal in a busy way. Who are the customers? Do they have easy access to the property? How easy can the property be located? Is the property visible or hidden? These are the questions to ask when purchasing a commercial property.

For a property purchase for residential purposes, you might consider the following factors;

  • Proximity: The closeness to primary locations like a place of work, place of worship, playground, regular leisure pot, children’s schools, markets, etc. These factors are important because for traffic grids in most cities. Cities like Lagos, Port Harcourt and other busy cities experience high congestions and a high volume of traffic during rush hours.
  • Accessibility: Before you buy or rent, ensure that the property you are buying or renting is accessible to the highway and good roads., access to a water supply, electricity supply in the area. It is advised that you don’t buy or rent a house where there is a shortage of power supply. Recently, property developers and homeowners provide power alternatives to their properties at additional costs. Homebuyers should explore this option if they can afford it. It is considered more stable than the conventional source of power.
  • Environment: Always have in mind that your property does not exist in a bubble. It’s part of a larger community that you will exist in daily. The surroundings and neighbourhood of the new property are important to the homebuyers.

With that in mind, you must find a neighbourhood that suits your needs before buying. Is the great escape one that gives you all the peace of a secluded forest or tons of energy from a bustling city center? Do you want to be able to walk to a coffee shop each morning or would you prefer not to have to contend with potentially noisy neighbours? Whatever your heart desires, don’t hesitate to do your research before starting your search. Take a drive and spend some time there, if possible.  Go out to eat at local restaurants and take a walk through a nearby park. Once you find areas that you like, let your real estate agent know. He or she will use this information to focus on showing you will have you feeling comfortable.

You have to consider the security architect of the environment, the crime rate in the region. If there are hoodlums attack on the roads leading to the property during rush hours. This is very common on Lagos roads. Any locality that is notorious for touting can be very dangerous.
The general notion of your dream home is to be safe and comfortable in your home. If these two are defeated then your home is no longer a home but a sojourn.

  • Property/Lot Size: Another important question that follows after knowing the location of the property is the lot or property size. Few homebuyers consider the property size as an afterthought when it comes to purchasing property, but it should be at the forefront of the buyer’s mind.
    The size of a property is one thing that can never alter or changed no matter what is built on the property. You can demolish an old building and build whatever you want on the lot, the lot size remains the same without any changes.

When looking for a property, consider the property/lot location and size carefully before making an offer or concluding a deal. Do you long for a pace at the back or front big enough for your kids to run around in? Does the lot have a view that you can see yourself enjoying for years to come?

If anything about the property size looks like a compromise to you, do not hesitate to walk away from closing the deal. You can always find a similar property on a better lot than it will be to continually settle for a less-than-adequate location day in and day out.

  1. The Property Age:

Michael Hardy

Michael Hardy | Image

Just as we are cognizant of our age, it is very important to take into consideration the age of the property when buying a property.  Buying older homes and brand new ones each have their pros and cons, so be aware of what you’re signing up for before you submit an offer. If you are going for an older property, always have in mind that older properties tend to require tender loving care (TLC).

If you are looking for a property that you do not require any work other than turning the key in the front door and walking into your new home. We suggest that you go for a new property. Do you dream of a closet large enough to hold your more-than-substantial wardrobe and an updated master bath that feels like a spa? In that case, new construction may be a better fit. If you can get in on the ground floor, you may even be able to select certain features while the home is being built and customize it further to your tastes.

  1. Budget:

workflow Max

Workflow Max | Image

This is not the most fun factor to think about, especially not when compared to upgrades and aesthetics. But, if cost is not considered, your dream home could end up becoming more of a worry than an escape.

Before you dream of buying a property, the first thing to do when you decide is to set a budget. Deciding to buy a property without setting the budget you are willing to pay for it is like building a castle in the air. While setting the budget always have in mind that prizes of property differ at different locations. The same property at Lekki is not going to be the same if the property I located in Ikoyi or Banana Island. That is to say, the price of a property in the middle-class neighbourhood is not the same as the same property in the upper-scale neighbourhood even though the two properties are of the same features and on the same lot size.

It is important for you as a potential buyer, to make research on the property average price in the neighbourhood you wish to secure your property. avails you of the information online.
Other than the value of the property, there are other expenses you should be ready to pay. Some of the fees are; legal and agency fees, survey land fees, Government fees at the Land Registry such as Certificate of Occupancy, Governor’s Consent, Ratification fees, Survey Information, and Fencing Fee for a piece of Land.

Your Budget should be determinant on the following factors;

  • Type of Property: The type of house you plan to acquire determines the budget you are making for the property. The size of the house and the structure, whether a duplex or bungalow, the number of rooms, and features.
  • State of the Property: The current condition of the property determines the budget. Old, Uncompleted, Newly Built, Furnished or not Furnished are factors to be considered before making your budget for the purchase.
  1. Payment Plan

payment plan

To secure a property in Nigeria requires a significant amount. The percentage of people that can afford to pay the lump sum price of a property is significantly low. The mortgage system is not reliable because of the huge and fluctuating interest. It is not popular in Nigeria.

Some financial institutions such as banks, microfinance banks, mortgage homes, etc., offer loans and mortgages to finance the purchase of houses and properties. They usually offer these loans at the prevailing interest rate and a specified period of payment. Failure to pay the loan will lead to the confiscation of the purchased property by these financial institutions, so it is vital to draw out a realistic payment plan that can work.

The developers often spread the payment plan up to 18 months but the option still favours the super-rich who can afford it.
Many Property Developers in Nigeria now understand that property is expensive, so they have devised payment options for houses on the market. Some of them require a down payment before you can claim ownership of the house, while others will only require you to begin paying in instalments. The payment plan usually runs for a couple of years, depending on the cost of the property and the agreed time frame.

Don’t make a hasty when agreeing to any payment plan or potion available to you. Before you settle on a payment option, you should consider factors such as interest rates, flexible payment options, loan and mortgage amounts that are accessible to you.

Try not to stretch yourselves to the furthest reaches of your budget. Remember that there are more costs to consider than just the monthly mortgage payment. You should also consider local taxes, monthly utility costs, and association fees when purchasing. Once you submit an offer on a property, have your agent get in contact with the sellers. He or she can ask them to provide a breakdown of their average monthly and yearly payments.

An extra note of caution: Keep in mind that these costs will stay consistent over time. You’ll still need to account for them if your circumstances change such as retirement or an expected layoff. Leave a little breathing room in your budget, so that you’ll feel comfortable staying in your dream home for many years to come. 

  1. Work with a good Agent.

agent post

In many countries around the world, it is not possible to buy or rent a property without a Real Estate Agent or a Realtor. In Nigeria, a Real Estate Agent or a Realtor is considered a clog in the wheel by property buyers. Anybody in the country can start and close a deal in real estate. This can work fine for some people, but it is usually best to make use of a realtor’s services to enjoy some of these benefits. We recommend that you employ the services of a Realtor who is vast in the property buying process.

The realtors are familiar with the property buying process and know the property laws that might affect you. They are well equipped with the buying processes and all the documents you need to stay from any encumbrances.

If you are in Lagos, make sure that the agent you are dealing with is registered and verified by Lagos State Real Estate Regulatory Authority (LASRERA).

  1. Documentation

land documentationDocumentation is the most important factor you have to consider when you intend to buy or rent a property.  Never in your life decide to purchase a property without proper and well-verified documentation. You have to treat buying or selling of property as a financial transaction. Under no circumstances should you be controlled by emotions. It is your responsibility to make sure that the person selling the property to you has the sale authority. You must demand proof to prove that beyond a reasonable doubt.

Always remember to ask for the following document;

  • Certificate of Occupancy (C of O)
  • the Survey Plan
  • the Tax Clearance Certificate
  • Contract of Sale
  • Receipt
  • the Deed of Assignment, etc.

It is important to note that in our society there are so many fake documents out there in circulations and a majority of the people have fallen victims to being given fake documents because they cannot recognise the authentic document. We advise hiring the services of professionals; a lawyer and a real estate agent are particularly important but get involved as well. If anything looks compromising to you, instantly call it out. When buying a property, do not over trust anybody. Don’t buy with emotions.

Another mistake you should not do is to hand over cash physically or make payment by cash. Every transaction concerning the purchase of property in Nigeria should be done through bank transactions. This is to ensure that when any problem arises, you can get your lawyer to prepare a receipt of purchase for further proof. Make sure to have a proof for every transaction that takes place while purchasing the property and get the right documentation before paying.

  1. Style:

Style houseHow a home looks are the first things that call your attention and others attention about a property. Whether it’s a style of living or the actual aesthetic of your property, you want to make sure your home is one that you’ll feel proud to pull up to each day. It is important to find a home that fits your style.

If you have in mind customizing your property to your taste, single homes make a great choice for you. This will give you the freedom to customize a property to your exact specifications. Condo living is for people who want to own their own home while still having access to hotel-style amenities. Townhome living offers a compromise between the two, but each association is different, so make sure you’re aware of the policies associated with each community.

Once you know which style of living you prefer, focus on aesthetics. As you go about your day, think about the different types of homes you see. Make a note of the one’s you could see calling home and which styles are a complete turnoff.

Even your dream home is going to require a little bit of customization – as it should. Whether you’ve spent years wishing for a chef-style kitchen, poolside backyard oasis, or a tricked-out media room, it’s unlikely that those features will be exactly to your specifications from the moment you sign the deed.

  1. Future Projects Potential:

furture const

Romolo Tavani |

As a potential buyer, you might be interested in adding value to the property you want to purchase. Keep an eye on how much customization will be required for each property you see.

Being honest here is in your best interest. You need to know the number of changes you want to make. Have that in mind. Even if you don’t do them at once, slowly you can get that done. If you know your way around power tools, make sure you’re okay with the investment of time that will be required. If you need a professional to get that done for you, you need to keep aside a good budget for that.

  1. Avoid all the Avoidable:

It is a dream of every potential homeowner to acquire a property he or he considered a dream home. That is a good dream to have, however, it is equally necessary for you as a potential homeowner to take tock of which facets of homeownership will make your life a living hell. This will help to guide your home search away from those qualities and idealistic living experiences marred by a feature you cannot change.

If you cannot afford noisy neighbours, focus your property search in an area where there is absolute tranquility, where only passing cars will be the only noise that will disturb the peace of the neighbourhood.

  1. Do your Home Work:

Don’t just purchase, make good enquiries and research on the property you want to purchase There are agents out there you can consult. Do not be afraid of them. Do not tag them as lazy people for they are doing a professional job. Find out how long the property has been on the market, ask if the property is still available. Get familiar with the environment where the property is located. Asking these salient questions will give you clarity on whether you want the property or not. Whether you are being charged the appropriate amount for the property or not. Making use of a reputable real estate agent is encouraged.

Read also what you need to know before buying land in Nigeria