Lagos to clamp down on fraudulent activities in housing sector

The Lagos State Government has stated that it would clamp down on fraudulent activities in the housing sector to ensure sanity in the industry.

This was made known by the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Housing, Ms Toke Benson- Awoyinka, on Wednesday at an event organised by the Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce (NBCC) Construction and Real Estate Group in Lagos.

According to NAN, Benson- Awoyinka said the move was in line with the Lagos fiscal responsibility measure to ensure that all stakeholders in the housing value chain were beneficiaries of their transactions.

What the Lagos State Governor’s aide on Housing is saying

Benson-Awoyinka said, “This year is going to be different as Lagos is going to tackle fraudulent activities in the real estate sector this year. We will name and shame when the time comes because the returns on investment is unbelievable so there’s no reason to defraud people.’’

She said that the state would in a few weeks conclude the foreclosure clause in its mortgage law to build investors’ confidence and provide access to investments when there’s a default in the mortgage payment.

Foreclosure simply refers to the legal process of taking possession of a mortgaged property when the mortgagor fails to keep up their mortgage payments.

Benson-Awoyinka emphasized the need for individuals that want to buy land to do their due diligence and engage the services of a lawyer when purchasing properties to avoid cases of fraudulent land allocation.

She said, “There’s no clear title of land in Lagos called ‘excision in process’, as such land has not to be allocated. You must search at the land bureau to ensure that a property has a clean title before you begin any transaction to avoid being scammed.’’

She expressed the state’s readiness to partner with the Federal Government to provide more affordable housing.

What you should know

The growth of the real estate sector and the proliferation of players in the state has brought about the need to regulate and sanitize the sector.
Recall that in March 2021, the Lagos State Government moved against briefcase real estate agents/property developers and artisans saying it will not allow them to take over the real estate sector to the detriment of professionals in the state.
This is as the state government has urged Lagosians to support its efforts to eliminate fraudulent practices in the Real Estate Industry by patronising registered Real Estate Practitioners/Property Developers.
Also in a bid to sanitize the real estate sector, the Lagos state government, in June 2020, announced a mandatory registration for real estate practitioners like house agents, property developers and professionals in the sector, with the state.
The state government through the Lagos State Real Estate Regulatory Authority (LASRERA), launched a website and registration database for real estate practitioners in Lagos State as part of efforts to checkmate the activities of fraudsters in the sector.

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