For many owning some sort of real estate is the dream but as with many other aspects of life owning a property in Nigeria can be a real jungle. Buying your dream house is more like planning your wedding day. You meet series of people(houses) till you finally find the one. Then there are months packed with excitement, stress, planning, and then, finally, the big payoff.
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One of the most significant financial decisions you’ll make in your lifetime is purchasing a house. If you feel you are ready for that decision, it’s impossible to be too prepared, I mean you are about to drop a lot of money. If you’re thinking of becoming a new homeowner in Nigeria, here are a few things you really should know before buying a house.
1. Use a trusted realtor
Real estate agents in Nigeria always get a cut from the sales price of the home and that is why some buyers might be a bit hesitant to use a realtor. Using a realtor mean you have a professional whose job is to not only find you a property you are going to like but also protect your interest. A savvy realtor who works for you can protect your interests and guide you through the buying process – from negotiating a price to navigating home inspections.
2. Understand how location relates to value
A lot of buyers purchase properties without fully understanding that value of various locations. In Lagos State, for example, major parts of the Lagos Island is more expensive than the parts of the Lagos Mainland. real estate investors need to have a grip on how an area can have a dramatic effect on value.
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3. Know how the home buying process works
You need to learn everything about buying a home in Nigeria. Ask questions from professionals, know everything about the documents involved in the process. Get a start to finish guide even if you read a lot there are somethings you might not know and don’t be scared to ask questions from a professional. don’t always trust a buyer’s agent, and don’t get emotionally tied up in the process (be prepared to walk away).
4. Think repair cost
It is often the case that you’ll have to make a few renovations when you buy a new house. While it is inexpensive to fix cosmetic issues (a bit of paint or some wallpaper) but making changes to kitchens and baths can be expensive. That doesn’t mean that you should give up on a house in need of a significant fix but you should factor in those costs when determining whether you can afford to buy (don’t forget to include labour).
5. Learn about the property you want to buy
When you find a home in Nigeria you are interested in buying, you need to learn as much as possible before putting in a down payment. Ask your agent how long the property as being on the market. You can find out if a home is fairly priced for the neighbourhood. Not only the property matters, the neighbourhood is also important. You should research the neighbourhood, crime rates, school quality and the likes.
6. Look out for deal breakers
Before house hunting, in Nigeria, you should have your own “must have and want” checklist when buying a home. You should have potential deal breakers like that needs replacing, a home in a high-risk flood zone etc.Besides that, while walking through the home, look past attractive finishes like high-end countertops and look for signs of possible big problems, things like cracks in the foundation or water stains on the ceilings or walls.
CHECK OUT: HOUSES FOR SALE IN LAGOS
7. Don’t just get obsessed with the purchase price
The price is just a part of owning a house, you need to consider all of the extra costs that come with being a new homeowner, It is not just home improvements that can cost money, maintenance cost also. You need to total all these costs and be sure you can afford it.
8. Take your time
Generally, when shopping for real estate, take your time. It might seem you are oppressed to make an offer for a home you are interested in relaxing and take your time, enjoy shopping around until you find a home you are sure you’ll be living in for many years to come. You don’t have to buy a home before you are 35 take your time till you can afford what you really need.