The bill that will regulate the real estate activities in Lagos State and for other related purposes has successfully scaled through the second reading at the State House of Assembly on Tuesday.
The bill passed the second reading through voice votes conducted by the Speaker, Mr Mudashiru Obasa, and thereafter committed it to the House Committee on Housing to report back in two weeks.
What they are saying about the Bill
According to Mr Adedamola Kasunmu representing Ikeja II, he succinctly noted that the bill would further redress the anomalies in the real estate business in Lagos. He said:
- “This bill seeks to redress the anomalies of real estate and consultancy services amongst other issues that ought to be looked into in the real estate business. It will also see to the valuation of real estate assets, prevent the breakdown of law observed among the realtors, real estate manager and others. It makes recommendation of policies that influence better deal in the lands bureau, New Town Development Authority NTDA and others, it will also enhance the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state.”
Mr. Kehinde Joseph, representing Alimosho II, said:
- “The bill would help streamline the activities of real estate agents”
According to Ibraheem Layorde, representing Badagry I, most of the agencies collecting fees are not making adequate returns to government coffers. However, he said:
- “When bill is passed and assented to, it would aid speedy dispensation of justice on issues in the real estate business.”
Bisi Yusuff, Alimosho I, Chairman, House Committee on Housing, is of the view that the bill is long overdue owing to the prevalence of anomalies in real estate transactions in the state and said:
- “There are quack agents collecting rent for owners, yet make no returns nor commit money to those they claim to represent. The Dubai experience and data base that affirms the genuineness of transaction is in view.”
According to Mr. Mudashiru Obasa, the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly;
- “It stands to cure the challenges faced by our people in Lagos and it also gives an opportunity to attract foreign investors, and having proper regulation makes it attractive and safe for business.”
What this means
- When the bill is eventually passed into law, sanity will be restored as Lagos state will be able to maintain a register of estate agents/developers, sanction unlicensed estate agency practitioners, collate data on property transactions, investigate complaints and petitions against licensed practitioners and ensure the payment of fees, taxes or charges on property transactions.
- It will require that any developer that wants to practice the business of estate development or agency must obtain a license from relevant authorities, and the state authority will have unbridled power to monitor completed or uncompleted structures and make recommendations for the revocation of subsisting right of occupancy on the property that failed to comply with notices or standards.
- The law would, to a large extent, set the sector free of quacks, who are destroying the image of registered practitioners including significant reduction in rental values and ugly incidents of land grabbers or the “Omonile”. Many house seekers have been defrauded by dubious estate agents and landlords. Building collapses are becoming quite common in Lagos.