Tenancy Law in Nigeria: Questions Well Explained

Tenancy Law in Nigeria: Questions Well Explained

The tenancy law in Nigeria has been developed over time to protect the rights of landlords and tenants. In this article, we shall discuss some of the common issues in tenancy law in Nigeria. Tenancy Law in Nigeria

If you are renting out your property, then you need to know what happens if the tenant does not pay rent. This may include eviction of the tenant from the property. If the tenant fails to vacate the premises after being served with notice, the landlord can apply for possession of the property.

The tenancy law in Nigeria is governed by the Landlord and Tenant Act. This act was enacted to regulate the relationship between landlords and tenants. The landlord has the right to possession of the property, while the tenant must pay rent and other charges to the landlord.

In the event of default, the landlord can apply for eviction from the court. Eviction is only allowed if the tenant fails to pay the rent after three months’ notice.

If the tenant does not agree to vacate the premises, he/she may apply for a stay order. A stay order means that the tenant shall continue paying the rent until the matter is resolved by the court.

What are the rights of a tenant in Nigeria?

  • A landlord has no right to evict a tenant without just cause.
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This implies that the landlord cannot terminate the tenancy agreement without giving the tenant notice of termination at least three months before the end of the term.

In addition, the landlord cannot increase the rent after the commencement of the tenancy unless he gives the tenant written notice of the change in rent at least one month before the effective date of the increased rent.

  • A tenant cannot be evicted unless the landlord gives him/her notice of eviction.

A tenant cannot be evicted from his/her rental property without giving the tenant at least 30 days’ written notice.

This means that if the landlord wants to evict the tenant, he/she has to give the tenant at least 30 days’ written notice before doing so.

If the landlord does not give the tenant any notice, then the tenant can still file a lawsuit against the landlord.

How many months’ notice do tenants have to give?

In Nigeria, if a tenant gives less than three months’ notice before vacating a rental property, the landlord can only claim compensation for damages that are caused by the tenant’s negligence.

If the tenant gives between three and six months’ notice, then the landlord can claim compensation for any damage that was done to the property.

However, if the tenant gives over six months’ notice, the landlord cannot make any claims against them.

How long does it take to evict a tenant in Nigeria?

Eviction can occur at any time. In some states, eviction may not even require court action. For monthly tenants, a month’s notice is usually sufficient. If your lease states that you have to give at least 30 days’ notice before terminating the tenancy, then you should do this.

If you are going to terminate the tenancy immediately after giving notice, then you can do it without any notice period.

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Quarterly Tenants

If your lease states that you need to give at least three months’ notice before terminating the tenure, then you should do it. But if you want to terminate the tenancy immediately, then you don’t need to give any notice period.

Half-Yearly Tenants

You need to give at least six months’ notice before terminating a half-yearly tenancy. If you want to terminate the tenure immediately, then you don’t need to give any notice.

Will a tenant pay rent after a quit notice?

Yes, they can stay. If the tenant has already paid the last month‘s rent, he/she can ask the landlord to give him/her additional time to pay the rest of the rent.

The landlord can either accept or reject the request, depending on whether the tenant has already paid enough money to cover the entire rent.

But in most situations, a tenant who has been served with a three-day notice (or any other type of notice) has 30 days to vacate the premises. After this period, the tenant loses his/her right to remain on the property.

Tenancy agreement fees in Nigeria

A tenancy agreement fee is a fee that is charged by landlords to tenants. This fee can vary from landlord to landlord and may depend on the type of property being rented out.

In some cases, this fee is included in the rent payment. However, if not, then the tenant has to pay this fee separately.

  • Rent Payment

Rent payment is the amount of money paid by the tenant to the landlord each month. This includes the monthly rent, any additional charges (such as utilities), and the security fee.

  • Caution fee

A caution fee is a sum of money that you agree to pay to the landlord if something goes wrong while you are in the occupation of the property.

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This could include things like damage caused by the tenant, late rent payments, or even leaving the property without permission.

How long can a tenant stay after the lease expires in Nigeria?

The law requires landlords to provide tenants with written notice of termination at least 30 days before the date of eviction. In some cases, the landlord may need to give the tenant less than 30 days’ notice.

A landlord who has rented out his property to a tenant may decide that he wants to terminate the tenancy agreement at any time. This could happen if the tenant fails to pay rent regularly, damages the property, or does not keep the premises clean. If this happens, the landlord would have the right to evict the tenant from the property.

In addition, the tenant can plead for the landlord to give him or her enough time to find alternative accommodation.

Can a tenant sue a landlord in Nigeria?

Yes, if the landlord has violated any provision of the tenancy agreement. For example, if the tenant has been evicted from the property without proper notice, the landlord can be sued.


Tenancy laws in Nigeria are not well defined. This makes it difficult for landlords to know what their rights are and for tenants to know what they should do if they want to terminate the lease agreement.

But, a landlord must understand that evicting a tenant without a written notice is illegal, and a tenant must also ensure that all the tenancy agreements are obeyed. If not, the landlord can serve him or her notice to quit.



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