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LANDS:Things consider when investing in properties

Investing in lands and property is the new deal.

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There is no doubt that investment in lands and property is one of the best financial decisions a person can make. Because not only is it a low maintenance investment that requires little to no effort, it is also very affordable and has the highest returns on investments.https://www.investopedia.com/articles/investing/050614/there-are-more-ways-invest-land-you-think.asp

But like everything else, before investing in land there are a few things to consider that will assist you in buying the best land. So, if you really want to invest in land, its best you read this article and note a few things so you don’t end up making mistakes that will cause you to lose money.

  1. Consider the surrounding of the land. Examine the neighborhood or community to know if it is a good or bad one. Is the area growing or declining? Find out if there are any houses, shopping malls, markets etc. near the land. Taking all these into consideration will help you purchase the best piece of land.
  2. Find out if the land has legal access. Can you legally get into the land without it being considered trespassing?

Endeavor to purchase only lands with legal access if not, selling it will be difficult and might even end up costing you money. Remember the whole idea behind land investment is to make more money not lose money, so take this very seriously.

  • Consider the land size. Lands have a variety of sizes; it is important to know the size of land you want to purchase and what it can used for. Lands come in different sizes like plots, acres, hectares etc. all these sizes play a role in the price of the land as well.
  • Why do you want to buy land? consider the purpose the land you purchase will serve. Explaining what you want to use the land for, be it for residential reasons, commercial reasons etc. makes it easier to know the type of the land to buy. And the decision-making process becomes easier and faster.
  • Make sure to get the necessary documents needed for the land. If you purchase a land without getting the necessary documents to claim ownership, it is already a failed investment. There are documents needed in order for you to be able to claim complete ownership of a land.

Buying property is one of the important steps most people wish to take at one point in life. There is some information to know before buying land in Nigeria. Some of this information would ultimately guide any prospective buyer of landed property in Nigeria. Some of this important information to know before buying a house in Lagos and other parts of Nigeria will be briefly discussed below.

Vendor’s Root of Title

When a vendor’s root of title is defective, the buyer also acquires a bad title upon acquisition. A good root of title must confer both the legal and equitable interest of the land in question, clearly describe the land and extent of interest being conveyed, state the owner of the land and nothing on the face of the document should cast any doubt on its authenticity. An example of a good root of title includes a deed of gift, deed of legal mortgage, assent and probate. Certificate of Occupancy can sometimes be a bad root of title in cases where there is existing interest on the lands, this was the decision of the court in the ofOgunleye v. Oni (1990) 2 NWLR (Pt. 135) 745. This is because Certificate of Occupancy is only a prima facie evidence and raises a presumption that the holder is in exclusive possession and has a right of occupancy over the land in dispute. This presumption is rebuttable because it can be displaced by evidence of a better title.

The capacity of The Vendor

The buyer should know the capacity in which the vendor is conveying the interest in the title of the land. The capacities in which the vendor may convey are as beneficial owner, mortgagee, trustee, settlor, or personal representative. Where the vendor is conveying as beneficial owner certain covenants would be implied such as;

  • That the vendor has a good title and grants quiet possession of the land
  • The vendor agrees to indemnify the buyer in the event of a claim buy another claimant on the property
  • That the property is free from any encumbrances.

Encumbrances

An encumbrance is a burden, hindrance, or claim against a property by a party that is not the owner. It may also be a financial obligation such as a mortgage, that is attached to the title of the land and is transferred with that right. Before buying lands, one must ensure that such land is free of such encumbrances.

Vacant Possession

This means land to be conveyed must be free from any claim of right of possession by a third party. The land must be free of a legal impediment to the enjoyment of the property. The property must also be free of any physical impediments, which are removable or will substantially interfere with the enjoyment of the property. Physical inspection of the land can show whether there is vacant possession or not.

Land Use

Land use is the categorization of land based on what can be built on it and what the land can be used for. There are many different categories of land use. The most common uses are residential, commercial, agricultural, recreational, and transport. It is good to understand the land use has various benefits such as preventing an expensive misunderstanding when it comes to what can be built on such land. It would be detrimental for a buyer who buys a property designated as residential to build a club.

Town Planning Laws and Regulations

Town planning laws and regulations may restrict the conveyance of certain land where the purpose for which they are intended to be used is contrary to the purpose of town planning law.

Family Land

Before buying a land, one must try to know whether the land is a communal or family land. When purchasing a communal land, the consent of the head of the community must be obtained while the consent of the family head and principal members must be sought and obtained when buying family land. Any purported sale by a member of a community or family without the necessary consent is voidable.

The doctrine of Lis Pendens (Pending Lawsuit)

Finally, where land is a subject of a pending lawsuit, the power of control is vested in the court. The effect of this is to put others on notice that there is a dispute concerning the property and restrict the sale of any interest in the land. Some vendors may intentionally hide and mislead buyers to purchase a land which is the subject of a lawsuit. This is why a thorough investigation must be conducted before buying any piece of land.

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