Would you like to property in Abuja? If your answer is Yes, then come with me as I show you step-by-step how to go about this in just few easy steps! Nigeria as you know is a very rich country. Although generally bereft of good governance, the country is still a highly lucrative place to start a business and earn massively from it. There are different types of businesses one could do in Nigeria ranging from small-scale to large-scale businesses. One of the most exciting and big income earning businesses in Nigeria over the years is real estate business. This type of business generally depends on location for profitability. Having a property in Kogi or Osun can’t be compared to having it in Abuja.
Abuja is the capital city of Nigeria and is one of the leading, most-fast growing cities in Africa. It is till date one of the safest places in Nigeria and null of huge volume of traffic for which a city like Lagos is known for and which makes it (Lagos) dreaded to many people. Lagos might be the center of economy of Nigeria but Abuja is arguably the sanest city in Nigeria. Many Nigerians are investing in properties in Abuja for either businesses or pleasure. Whichever side of the divide you choose, there is abundant room for prosperity if you choose to buy property in Abuja any time from now.
The Steps to Follow to Buy Property in Abuja
Getting a property in Abuja can be very tedious, well, what isn’t in Nigeria? Nevertheless, there are some steps to take before acquiring any property in Abuja. Let me give you an example of acquiring a landed property in the city. First, understand that land in Abuja belongs to the Federal Government of Nigeria and is controlled by the *FCT Minister. Allocation of land is headed by the Minister. There are 2 Agencies in charge of landed properties in Abuja and both are headed by the FCT minister. These agencies are The Federal Capital Development Agency (FCDA) and Abuja Geographic Information System (AGIS).
* “FCT” is an acronym for Federal Capital Territory.
The Federal Capital Development Agency (FCDA) and Abuja Geographic Information System (AGIS)
These two agencies are under the FCT Minister and although they oversee land management in Abuja, still have different and complete roles that they play.
The work of FCDA is to oversee the planning and expansion of the city and their main goal is to make Abuja a world-class City to live in while the AGIS oversees the allocation and distribution of land in Abuja.
The AGIS provides:
- Certificate of Occupancy,
- Rights of Occupancy,
- Land allocation application, and
- any other related services.
Although, Abuja land is owned by the Federal Government, it is generally divided into Public Land and Private Land.
The Public or Government Land is the land which is allocated by the government directly through AGIS while the Private Land is the land which has been allocated by a person or an organization.
When acquiring public property, it is important to know that there are two different kinds of properties in Abuja which are:
- Government Acquisition Land, and
- Government Committed Land.
In Government Acquisition Land, the land is opened for buyers as long as they go through the main and legal channel. But in Government Committed Land, the federal government reserves this area for future city development like building of Airports, Rail tracks, Roads, etc. Any building on this structure will be demolished and the owner of the property will be sued. To avoid this unfortunate situation, the buyer needs to confirm from the office of AGIS about a condition of the land in view – whether it is Government Acquisition Land or whether it falls under Government Committed Land and take necessary action or redress.
To buy a land in Abuja directly from the government, there are some applications to fill and follow step-by-step. The criteria required include visiting the website of AGIS and completing an online application process which include:
- Completion of the downloaded application form with some details like name, age, address and contacts.
- Citing what the property will be used for such as either hotel, church, mosque school etc.
- Paying an application fee directly to the bank account provided by the AGIS, and
- Presentation of evidence of payment through the bank receipt to AGIS.
Documents such as the Application Form, Driver’s License, Passport Photograph, etc. should be presented formally at AGIS.
After your application has been reviewed and validated, a piece of land will be allocated to you and acknowledged.
After all this applications, a Right of Occupancy (RoO) will be granted to the person from the government. It is important to convert the Right of Occupancy to Certificate of Occupancy (CoO) as early as possible. The processes to obtain Certificate of Occupancy can also be processed through the AGIS and this certificate gives the buyer the full ownership right of the landed property.
Related: How To Buy Properties In Lagos
Private Properties Acquisition
To acquire a private land in Abuja, the Certificate of Ownership of the seller which was given to him/her by the AGIS will be transferred to the new owner of the property upon purchase of the said property. The process to acquire private land differs from the one of public land. They are easier to acquire and they have a range of locations one can choose from personally unlike public in which government can allocate places that are underdeveloped or sparsely populated. Since a buyer will just be allocated a land straight from the government, the places are usually not what the buyer expected or will enjoy most times. Therefore, it is advisable to purchase an already registered property. This is the route many people go for.
Buying a private land is easier and quicker because all the steps required by AGIS will be skipped since they have been previously undertaken by the original owner of the land or property. Nevertheless, it is important to know that there are scams everywhere in Nigeria; therefore, one has to be very careful before purchasing a private land in Abuja. This is where Real Estate Agents, Surveyors and Property Lawyers come in to ensure that the land to be sold is genuine.
The property business in Abuja is big and lucrative and therefore, finding the best and genuine land to buy is always a great deal. One needs to engage the services of a Real Estate professional instead of family and friends. The estate professionals are vast in knowledge about Abuja land and therefore have real and genuine advice to offer unlike family and friends who might be limited in knowledge about landed properties’ acquisition in Abuja.
Related: How To Buy Property In Port Harcourt
Useful Tips for Buying Property in Abuja:
Do Necessary Preliminary Checks
It is important and of necessity to do some preliminary checks on the property before verifying the seller’s documents. Things to check include the neighborhood of the landed property, location, environment, security, and soil structure. These checks can be done by a Surveyor.
Conduct Legal Search to Validate Records
The next thing to do after confirming the location of the property and verifying the document is to conduct legal search. The legal search includes verifying the documents and making sure they are genuine and duly registered in the AGIS database. This can be done appropriately by employing the services of a registered lawyer to take a look at the documents for legality.
After everything has been verified and confirmed genuine, the property can be purchased and the ownership can be transferred to you.