Lagos State Government to penalize Landlords guilty of charging exorbitant Rent

  | 3 min read
Lagos State Government to penalize Landlords guilty of charging exorbitant rent

The Lagos State Government has warned that it would start penalizing house owners found guilty of renting out their apartments at exorbitant fees.

This disclosure is contained in a statement issued by the Lagos State Commissioner for Housing, Moruf Akinderu-Fatai, who stated that the government would wield a big stick on allottees who engaged in sharp practices.

Akinderu-Fatai said residents of various state housing schemes have filed complaints about the high rent being charged by homeowners, adding that] the state government will withdraw allocation from culpable homeowners.

Offenders to forfeit their houses

The Commissioner said:

“The essence of asking allottees to make a five percent down payment and spread the remaining amount for ten years was to make life bearable for Lagosians.
“This is what Mr Governor wants to achieve, but some people seem to be taking Mr Governor’s magnanimity for granted. They are renting those apartments out to make money. The question is why do people try to inconvenience others when the government intended to make life bearable for citizens?”

Akinderu-Fatai called on the facility managers and association members in the estates to report culpable allottees to the ministry, adding that those homeowners would forfeit their apartments with their payment refunded.

The commissioner assured that the State Government will continue to cater to the needs of first-time buyers who are in dire need of such accommodation facilities through outright purchase and rent-to-own platforms.

The Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Housing, Abdulhafis Toriola, an engineer, said a lot of complaints have been received from some of the estates that some homeowners harbor people of questionable character hence posing a threat to residents.

He noted that the ministry as a matter of urgency shall investigate and take the right step towards safeguarding the lives and prosperity of residents in the affected estates.

The Permanent Secretary also urged allottees to take ownership of joint facilities and follow the rules put in place to maintain the estates.

What this means

The Lagos State Government consistently condemns unjust rent hikes by landlords (which could be as a result of several reasons) and urges residents to vocalize their grievances rather than endure silently. Emphasizing the importance of speaking out, the government highlights that enforcement of rent laws relies on citizen complaints.

To reinforce fairness, a new regulatory agency has been established to oversee both tenants and landlords, ensuring adherence to existing laws, as they risk being neglected if not actively applied or contested. Also, there are penalties set up for defaulters.

Christian Nduaguba