Documents To Ask For When Buying A House & Land In Nigeria

Documents To Ask For When Buying A House & Land In Nigeria

There are various important documents to ask when buying a house in Nigeria.

Some of these documents are used to verify the title of the seller of the property.

In this article, we explain some relevant documents to demand when buying a land or landed property in Nigeria.

Buying a house in Nigeria goes beyond physical inspection and making payments, the buyer must ensure that the seller has the legal right to transfer ownership in that property to him to avoid unnecessary disputes, this brings us to the importance of asking for the necessary documents, which are very essential as they are evidence to show that the seller has a good title and as such can validly transfer ownership to the buyer.


Some of the relevant documents to ask when buying a house or land in Nigeria are briefly discussed below.



Deed of Assignment/ Deed of Transfer

This is the document that transfers legal ownership of the property to the purchaser subject, however, to perfection.

This document is very important, the purchaser needs to ask for it when buying a house from someone who previously purchased it from another person.

Although the abstract of title, the epitome of title, and payment receipt ought to have been different documents, but are in practice contained in the Deed of Assignment.



Certificate of Occupancy

The Certificate of Occupancy is one of the most important land documents in Nigeria.

It can be used to certify the legal ownership status of any land in Nigeria.

It is the document that indicates that an individual has been granted a statutory right of occupancy by the Governor of the state or a customary right of occupancy by the Local Government Chairman, where the land is situated in a rural area.

This document is also very essential where the property in question is on a land that was acquired through a state grant.

Approved Survey Plan

Another important document to ask when buying a land in Nigeria is the approved survey plan, because it clearly marks and defines legal boundaries, helps reveal the true ownership status of a property, and also reveals if the land is under any government acquisition or committed area.

This document will become even more important where the house is bought along with surrounding land.


Duly Perfected Assent

The personal representatives divest themselves of the real estate of the deceased through an assent.

This is required where the house belongs to the estate of a deceased, in this situation, it becomes pertinent for the purchaser to request for a duly perfected assent from the personal representatives.

He can even go further to verify if letters of administration/probate have been granted.


Power of Attorney

A power of attorney is a document usually under seal whereby a person (donor) authorizes another person (donee) to do on his behalf anything that the donor can do lawfully.

Since this is an instrument of delegation, it is usually required where a person is acting for another person.


In conclusion, they are other documents, although not frequently demanded when buying a house, they may become important depending on the circumstances surrounding the sale.

Such documents include; Duly perfected Legal Mortgage, Vesting order/Judgement of Court, Evidence of grant from the State among few others.

It is mostly advised that a buyer of any property should endeavor to engage a lawyer who can advise on an appropriate document to be required in any given property transaction.


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