The rental market in Nigeria is now at its all-time high, meaning thousands of people every day are looking for an apartment to rent. Renting your place instead of buying property has a lot of advantages: most importantly, you have more freedom to choose the apartment you like and move for better job opportunities or better apartments.
However, finding a dream property to rent is often not an easy task. First of all, since there are so many people looking for an apartment simultaneously with you, apartment hunting becomes a competition. Second, if the price is your main criteria for choosing a place, it might make the choosing process even more difficult. But there is no reason to worry – with our 8 tips you will find the most suitable property in no time!
1. Know where to look
Finding a good apartment is a task that requires a lot from you, and knowing where to find the perfect place is the most important skill. Old ways of finding property no longer bring the best results – it’s better to use a website like JiJi, where real people post ads of the places they want to rent out. Use keywords to find exactly what you’re looking for. For example, here are apartments for rent in Lagos, Abuja, Rivers, Ogun and Oyo.
2. Be realistic about your budget
Your dream property might not be the one you can afford – this is a statement you need to keep in mind while looking for a place to rent. Sure, you may be dreaming about a three-bedroom place in a prestigious apartment complex with 24/7 security and a swimming pool, but don’t worry if you can’t afford all of that at the moment – you’ll find a good apartment within your price range if you look hard enough.
3. Use your extended network
Using your extended network, which includes your friends, the friends of your friends, your coworkers and their friends, is one of the fastest and most effective ways to find a great apartment to rent. Spread a word about the type of property you need and wait for new offers to come towards you. All you have to do is pick the most perfect place and thank your friend or acquaintance for referring you to your dream flat!
4. Stay the night
Of course, not all landlords provide their future tenants with an opportunity to test the property before signing the contract, but you shouldn’t be ashamed to ask. If you get a chance to spend a day or two in the apartment you chose is a good way to see if there are no annoying noises that can prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep. Additionally, spending some time in the flat is your opportunity to explore the neighbourhood and meet your potential neighbours.
Don’t miss 4 more tips on page 2
5. Check the outlets and other conveniences
A big part of the property pricing lies in modern conveniences – we all want to be able to use running water, electricity, air conditioning and other appliances at any time. However, not every landlord will tell you there is a problem with any of the conveniences, so you’ll have to check them yourself. Try every electric outlet and switch, turn on the water in the kitchen and bathroom, flush down the toilet, and check the shower. If there are any issues, demand a discount from the landlord, or ask him to fix the issues.
6. Test Wi-Fi and mobile reception in every room
Many apartments today are equipped with a Wi-Fi router, but if the signal is too weak, you won’t be able to use Wi-Fi in the most distant areas of the apartment, which is why it’s important to test the signal everywhere in the apartment. As for mobile reception, sometimes users experience issues inside the apartment due to various obstacles. If you don’t want to end up with a malfunctioning smartphone, make sure there is reception in every room of the flat.
7. Ask about the plumbing
If you’re looking for an apartment in a multi-storeyed apartment complex, it’s important to know how the plumbing system is arranged in the house, especially if you’re planning to occupy the apartment on the first floor. Why is this issue so important? Well, if the plumbing is organized vertically, it may lead to backing up the toilet, bath or sink in your bathroom. For example, if someone on the upper floor flushes down something big, it may clog up the plumbing in your apartment. To avoid situations like this ask about the plumbing beforehand.
8. Try not to go alone
Even if you’ll be living in the new flat on your own, it’s never a bad idea to take your friend or family member with you when you go to look at apartments. First, they’ll ensure your safety, especially if you don’t know the neighbourhood you’re about to visit. Second, they will give you advice concerning the apartment and will keep you from making a rushed choice. It’s important to ask your companion for their opinion – it will help you get a better perspective of things.