“We May Soon Start Sleeping Under Bridges” Residents of Lagos cry out, as Cost of Accomodation Shoots Up

Taiwo Ajayi
5 Min Read

By Sylvester Kwentua

Residents of Lagos are pleading with the state Government to find a lasting solution to the high cost of accomodation in the state, before it gets out of hand.

In a random vox pop by this reporter on Thursday in Lagos, a lot of settlers in the state, lamented the high cost of renting an accomodation, and expressed fears that people may soon resort to sleeping under the bridges, unless the FG steps in.

“Getting a house in Lagos is like booking for a space in heaven”, Olamide, a snacks vendor blurted out.

“My brother, I know that things are hard in Nigeria generally, but you see this Lagos! You see house in Lagos? Na another thing totally. Na only big man wey dey see plenty money everyday, fit rent house for Lagos oh. Me as I dey so, when this year ends, I will relocate back to my village. I can’t kill myself abeg”. Olamide complained bitterly.

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Chukwuka, a spare parts dealer in Oshodi, in his assertion, believes that Lagos Landlords and there agents are making living in Lagos, unpleasant and undesirable.

“Between landlords and agents, I don’t know really know who is to blame for the high cost of accomodation in Lagos, but what I know is that if care is not taken, Lagos will witness people sleeping under the bridges very soon, unless the excesses of landlords and agents are curbed” Chuks, as he preferred to be addressed, said.

Another resident, Ayo, who is a banker, while agreeing with Chuks on the excesses of landlords and agents in Lagos, also stylishly absorbed the landlords of any blame.

In his opinion, the house agents should be solely held responsible for the high cost of accomodation in the state.

“Yes, some landlords can be greedy, but I won’t blame them for deciding the price they wish to put out for rent”. Ayo fired.

“See, if I build a house tomorrow, I can decide to rent it out or not. And If I decide to rent it out, I will be the one to fix how much I want to earn as my rent. I know how much I spent in building my house, and I will fix my rent based on the building cost.” Ayo continued.

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“When I decide to put it out for rent, I will contact an agent, and when we agree, the agent will be the one to fix additional fees. In some cases, these agents will selfishly fix additional fees that will chase potential renters away. These Lagos agents are sometimes rippers.” Ayo voiced out.

In a bid to give the agents a chance of defense, this reporter spoke with a top property agent in Lagos, Mr Omorobo Smart.

Mr Omorobo Smart, who is a top property and housing agent in Lagos, believes that the agents have done nothing wrong, and should not be totally blamed for the high cost of housing.

“My oga, why will people blame agents? We are only doing our jobs? Most times, the landlords will be the one to even ask us to increase some of the fees, like the caution fees. In this instance, what should the agent do? Does he not want money?” Mr Omorobo rhetorically asked.

Investigations by this reporter, fortunately aligns with the opinions of the responders.

A one room self-contained in Lagos for example, now goes for 250 thousand Naira. Two years ago, you would have gotten same for 150 thousand Naira.

A 3 bedroom flat in Lagos is now 750 thousand Naira in some areas, and 800 thousand Naira in other areas. Two years ago, one would have gotten same for 500 thousand Naira.

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