Spleet Africa
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Spleet Africa

Looking for an apartment in Lagos? Read this guide first.

If you’ve never had to rent an apartment by yourself in Lagos and are looking to get your first apartment, then this guide is totally for you. If you are moving to Lagos after spending most of your life in other cities and you want to rent an apartment, then this guide is also for you. If you’ve rented an apartment in Lagos before and want to move to a new place, this guide is also for you.

House hunting in Lagos has become so wild that many people have suggested that they throw the whole city away and just move everybody to new cities 😭. Maybe that will make things better, who knows. But until that becomes a viable solution, we will keep finding ways to navigate the current situation.

In this guide, we will share some of the tips we have gathered from personal experience, and from conversation with people who have experience doing this.

Prepare for madness.

If you’re not renting on Spleet Africa, then the first thing you should know is that renting an apartment in Lagos is absolute bonkers. You need to know this, acknowledge it, and prepare for the madness in advance.

You will hear things like “inspection fees”, “we do not rent to single women”, “we do not rent to people outside specific ethnic groups”, “you have to pay 2 years rent upfront”, etc.

But that’s not all there is to the madness that is house hunting in Lagos. There’s also the prevalent issue of substandard buildings, dingy rooms, lack of basic amenities, and outrageous rent costs for really subpar apartments. Prepare for all this before you encounter premium heartbreak.

Define your needs before you begin your search.

Before you even start speaking with or reaching out to housing agents or searching on apartment listing websites, define the kind of apartment you want and where you want it to be located.

In many cases, people consider location based on where they work and the distance including potential traffic delays, etc. These things are actually essential because an overall better life is determined by these things as well. Imagine leaving the office after a hard day of work and having to sit in traffic for over 2 hours just to get home and rest.

However, with the spread of the coronavirus, more people who live in Lagos now have the opportunity to work remotely. If this is the case for you, then maybe distance is not a big deal for you. Still, the important thing is to define what is the perfect home for you; how much you want to spend max, where you want it to be, and what the nature of the apartment should be.

Identify and engage with trustworthy agents.

Someone once said that finding a trustworthy agent in Lagos is like finding a needle in a haystack. The truth is that there are trustworthy agents, as scarce as they can be. You can find a trustworthy agent by interacting with people you know personally who have been able to find apartments for themselves through agents.

Usually, it is easier to find a great and trustworthy agent by speaking with a friend that has enjoyed great service from that agent. It helps a lot to speak with agents that you can trust..

Consider co-living or apartment sharing.

If you’re just moving into Lagos and want to save money on renting an apartment close to work, then you may want to consider sharing an apartment.

This typically starts from finding someone you can trust and live with who is looking to share an apartment too. It is important to ensure that you can and are willing to share an apartment because if you do this, you’ll be living with that person for as long as it takes.

SWOT the apartment & location before paying.

Before making the commitment to pay for, move into, and live in any apartment, make sure to measure the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of living in that apartment.

Things to typically look out for include accessibility, power supply, water supply, proximity to your workplace (if you’re working on site), flood threats, security level, etc. While some of these things can be augmented if they’re not up to par, some are absolutely necessary.

If you’re moving into a new apartment, make sure to request for electricity bills (especially if they’re still using a post-paid system). Avoid moving into a place where you have to pay the power bills of a previous resident.

Final words.

An advice no one expected would be relevant in 2021 is: when going to view apartments, go with a friend or have someone who knows about your whereabouts and enough information on the agents.

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