Documents To Ask For When Buying Land
Everyday thousands of Nigerians at home and abroad hope to buy lands in Nigeria, more especially in popular cities such as Ibadan, Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, Abeokuta, etc, but the common reoccurring theme that filters through their minds is how to safeguard their money so that they won’t be duped by fraudsters or lose their lands coupled with the terrifying stories that normally accompany the smooth transfer of these lands because of the prevalent nature of Land Scam artists and dubious Real Estate companies that specialize in defrauding prospective land purchasers. In order not to fall victim, there is a need to know the documents to ask for when buying land in Nigeria.
There are a number of crucial documents to ask for when buying land in anywhere in Nigeria. Below are the documents to ask for when buying land in Nigeria.
- Approved survey plan
- Approved layout
- Power of Attorney
- Deed of assignment
- Certificate of Occupancy ( C of O)
If you are dealing with an estate developer (buying within an estate), you should ask for the approved survey plan, approved layout, the power of attorney and the global C of O. If you are buying from an individual or company (one who has bought and wishes to resell), you should ask for the receipt, deed of assignment, approved survey plan and C of O.
Buying directly from the family who claims to own the land is quite tricky. This is because it is difficult to determine the true owners of the land especially when the documents showing ownership haven’t been processed.
Where the documents haven’t been processed, there are no documents to show authenticity and a prospective buyer has to really a great deal on word of mouth from the members of the community to ascertain the true owner(s) of the land in question.
When the documents have been processed, they should provide you with the approved survey plan, approved layout (where the land is a large one and is being sold on a per plot basis) and the C of O.
NOTE: It is very important that you have a good property lawyer before embarking on land/property purchase. Reason being that your lawyer is the one who ensures that you don’t run into legal trouble with land/property documents after purchase. It’s your lawyer’s job to verify the authenticity of any title document backing the land/property.
Conducting a Search:
- Application submitted with affidavit of purpose (searches are conducted using the following criteria: – Name of Owner, Registration Particulars, Address of Property and Survey Plan.
- Letter of Authority (where applicable)
- Bill for payment of Search Fees
- Tender Tellers
- Conduct Search
Work Flow for Registration of Title:
- Confirmation of all payment receipt (by Accounts Department)
- Collection of Form A13 from the Office of Registrar of Titles by Applicant – 1 day
- Duly completed Form A13 with supporting documents are submitted by Applicant to the Office of the Registrar of Titles
- A registration number & application number are issued to a certified application – 1 day
- Notice are prepared for interested parties signatures
- Reply to Notice is received and Draft Entries prepared
- An approved Notice is e-mailed /posted by registered post to applicant
- Prepared Notice are forwarded to Registrar of Titles for approval of issuance of Notice to Applicant
- Approval of Draft Entries
- Typing & Binding of Title
- Final Indexing of Title
- File is sent via the Deputy Registrar of Titles to ROT for signature
- Registered Title delivered to applicant
Work Flow for Registration of Deeds
- Submission of Application with relevant documents for registration of Deed by Applicants
- Application with accompanying documents are checked and endorsed
- Satisfied application/document are issued with registration number
- Application sent for indexing
- Applicant file is send to Deputy Registrar of Titles for signature
- File is sent to Registrar of Titles for second signature
- Registered Deed is delivered
Work Flow for Registration of Certificate of Occupancy
- Certificate of Occupancy is sent with a covering letter from LUAD to Office of Registrar of Titles
- The file is sent to the C of O room to add a file jacket to the C of O Form
- C of O is sent to the Deputy Registrar of Titles for signature
- C of O is sent to Registrar of Titles for second signature
- The details of registered C of O is entered serially in a day book
- The registered C of O is entered is a dispatch book and sent to LUAD for collection by applicants