Legal Duties of Landlords in Nigeria

Tenants have the primary duty to pay rent at the appropriate time, so a landlord has the primary duties he must adhere to.

The role of a landlord is vital, there is a marked difference between what people believe a landlord does and what a landlord actually does. This is because, in the business of house renting, they are solely the employee, playing multiple parts.

The specific duties of a landlord vary depending on the tenancy type and agreement. Statutorily, every Nigerian landlord is bound by the tenancy law.

However, all Landlords must follow certain duties to accommodate their tenants, which are;

Property Safety

A tenant wants to feel safe inside his environment. As a landlord, you have the primary of ensuring that tenants are safely inhabited.

Both outdoor and indoor spaces must maintain high-quality safety practices.

Within the indoor space allotted to your tenants, all doors and windows should have well-fixed locks. Good locks keep buglers off. Advisably, front doors must be at least 44 millimeters thick, having a deadbolt lock.

To keep up with the safety train, you should always change the locks before a new tenant moves in. During the process of tenant search, you should use a generic lock if you are going to give your realtor the keys to the apartment.

For health safety, you are responsible as a landlord to ensure optimum health standards within the outdoor spaces, either by yourself or through an agreement with a tenant or superintendent.

Additionally, tenants should feel safe with other tenants. Conduct a rental background check to identify red flags and avoid problematic tenants and any form of criminality within the home spaces.

Receipt Issuance

It is an actionable offense to refuse to issue a receipt for rent paid and received. As a landlord, you are obliged to issue a receipt for rent to your tenant, once it can be established that payment has been made, regardless of the medium of payment: cash, cheque, electronic transfer, or other methods of payment.

Necessary details such as the name of the tenants to whom the receipt applies, amount and date for each payment received for any rent, address of the rental unit to which the receipt applies, name of the landlord of the rental unit, and the signature of the landlord should be indicated on the receipt.

Care and Maintenance

Properties require routine maintenance to keep them in top condition, therefore, landlords are required to keep their rental property. It is the landlord’s responsibility to make sure tenants have somewhere to put their garbage, typically on the number of tenants and the number of times trash is collected per week.

Landlords must make reasonable repairs to keep the property in habitable condition. If a repair is necessary because of a tenant’s neglect or abuse, the landlord can charge the tenant for the cost of the repair. He must make sure all plumbing, heating, electrical, gas, and supplied appliances are in working order.

Landlords Should Advise All Tenants to Purchase Renters Insurance

Landlord insurance doesn’t cover the renters’ personal belongings. Therefore, you should advise all tenants to purchase renters insurance, as a landlord. The efficacy of this is to insure their possessions in the case of certain perils such as fire outbreaks, floods, or other disasters and protect their liability for an accident a guest may have inside of their apartment.

Your advisory role should include an emphasis on tenants getting a vivid understanding of what is and isn’t covered before picking an insurer.