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When it comes to matters of property and ownership, two terms that are often used interchangeably but have distinct meanings are “real estate” and “real property.” While they are related and connected, understanding the differences between these terms is crucial for anyone involved in the world of property ownership, investment, or real estate transactions.
Real Estate: The Tangible Asset
Real estate refers to the physical and tangible assets associated with land and everything permanently affixed to it. This includes not only the land itself but also any structures or improvements, such as houses, buildings, and other developments. Essentially, real estate encompasses all the physical aspects of a property, both the land and any structures on it.
Real property, on the other hand, is a broader term that includes the real estate itself, along with the associated legal rights and interests in the property. Real property encompasses the legal ownership and interests tied to the physical real estate.
Why funds is a must-have before diving into real estate - Housing Cable  Nigeria
Real Property: The Legal Rights and Interests
Real property is often described as the bundle of rights associated with a piece of real estate. These rights can be categorized into several key components:

1. Right of Possession: This refers to the legal right to occupy and use the property.

2. Right of Control: The owner has the authority to make decisions about the use, maintenance, and development of the property.

3. Right of Exclusion: The owner has the right to exclude others from the property or any part of it.

4. Right of Enjoyment: This involves the right to benefit from the property, including any income or profits generated from it.

5. Right of Disposition: The owner has the right to transfer, sell, lease, or convey the property to others.
Real property rights are not limited to individuals owning land or real estate but also extend to various legal interests, such as easements, leases, mortgages, and other encumbrances, that can be associated with a piece of real estate.
Distinguishing Between the Two
7 Property Features You Should Mention On Real Estate Sites - Templatic
To understand the differences between real estate and real property, consider the following examples:

– If you own a residential house, the physical structure, the land it sits on, and all the fixtures inside (like the plumbing and electrical systems) constitute the real estate. The bundle of rights that come with this ownership, including the right to occupy, control, exclude others, enjoy, and dispose of the property, collectively make up the real property.

– In the case of a commercial property, the building, land, and any attached fixtures are the real estate. The lease agreements with tenants, easements for utility access, and the right to rent the property to generate income represent aspects of real property.

– A vacant plot of land, though devoid of any structures, is also real estate. The rights and interests associated with this land, including the right to use, exclude, and transfer ownership, constitute the real property.

The legal and practical implications of distinguishing between real estate and real property are particularly important in real estate transactions, disputes, and estate planning. Knowing what rights and interests you hold and how they relate to the physical assets can greatly impact your decisions and responsibilities as a property owner.
In conclusion, real estate and real property are interconnected but distinctly different concepts in the realm of property ownership. Real estate refers to the physical, tangible assets such as land and structures, while real property encompasses the legal rights, interests, and the bundle of rights tied to those physical assets. Understanding the nuances of these terms is essential for anyone involved in real estate transactions, property management, or legal matters related to real property.
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In Nigeria, the concept of property title is of paramount importance, as it determines the legal ownership and rights associated with real estate.  being one of Nigeria’s most populous and economically vibrant regions, has a diverse range of property titles. These titles reflect the complexity of the real estate market in the state and serve as the foundation for property transactions and land use. In this article, we will explore the various types of property titles in Nigeria.

  1. Certificate of Occupancy (C of O):
The Certificate of Occupancy is the highest form of property title in Lagos State. It represents full ownership rights and is issued by the state government. To obtain a C of O, the applicant must go through a rigorous process, which includes land surveys, payment of fees, and compliance with various conditions. Once issued, the C of O grants the holder the exclusive right to use and develop the land as they see fit, subject to the regulations and laws of the state.
Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) In Nigeria - Villa Afrika ...
  1. Right of Occupancy (R of O):
A Right of Occupancy is a property title that grants the holder the legal right to occupy and use a piece of land, but it does not confer full ownership rights. R of Os are typically granted for a specific term, which may be 99, 60, or 30 years, and are subject to renewal. Holders of R of Os must pay annual or periodic rents to the state government, and they are required to develop the land in accordance with the terms and conditions outlined in the title document.
  1. Deed of Assignment:
A Deed of Assignment is a legal document used to transfer ownership of land or property from one party to another. It is often utilized when an individual purchases land from someone who holds a C of O or R of O. This type of property title is essential for documenting and verifying property transactions and changes in ownership.
  1. Governor’s Consent:
Governor’s Consent is a vital title document required when land with a Right of Occupancy is being transferred or used as collateral for a loan. It is an endorsement by the state governor, indicating approval of the land transaction. Without Governor’s Consent, any land transaction may be considered invalid or unenforceable.
  1. Certificate of Sales:
This title is often issued by the government when land is acquired through a public auction or acquisition process, such as when land is repossessed due to non-payment of rent or for other legal reasons. The Certificate of Sales grants the holder the right to the land but is not as secure as a C of O.
  1. Excision:
Excision is a process through which land is excised from government-owned land and granted to individuals or communities. It is an essential property title in Lagos State, especially in areas where land ownership is disputed or unclear. An excision order is usually required to establish legal ownership and development rights.
  1. Land Receipt:
A Land Receipt is a basic document issued to acknowledge payment for land. It serves as proof of purchase and is often a preliminary step in the process of acquiring more formal property titles like the Deed of Assignment or the Certificate of Occupancy.
Understanding the various property titles in Lagos State is crucial for both buyers and sellers in the real estate market. It helps ensure that transactions are legally sound and that property rights are properly recognized and protected. It is essential to work with legal and real estate professionals when dealing with property titles to navigate the complex regulatory landscape and ensure that your real estate investments are secure and legitimate.
In conclusion, Lagos State offers a wide range of property titles, each with its own set of rights and responsibilities. The Certificate of Occupancy and Right of Occupancy are among the most important and secure property titles, while other documents like Deed of Assignment, Governor’s Consent, Certificate of Sales, and Excision play crucial roles in property transactions and development. Understanding the nuances of these property titles is essential for anyone involved in real estate in Lagos State, Nigeria.


In June of this year, the State government sent shockwaves through the construction and real estate industry by announcing a 100 percent increase in building planning permit rates. The decision, which sparked significant controversy and concern, has now been partially reversed, as the government recently revised the rates downwards. The official reason for this move was to align the rates with the recommendations of built environment professionals.
According to government sources, the rates have been reduced by 40 percent. While this adjustment appears significant, professionals in the field, especially town planners represented by the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners (NITP), are urging the state government to consider further reductions in order to encourage voluntary compliance.
The initial 100 percent rate hike was introduced during a challenging economic period marked by exchange rate fluctuations, cost-push inflation, and escalating prices of building materials. This move was met with widespread concern as it was expected to have a negative impact on the real estate sector’s contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and reduce construction activities.
The revised rates are categorized into four zones within the state. In Zone one, which includes Eti-Osa, rates for building permits now stand at N320 for ground to the fourth floor, N600 for five to 10-floor buildings, and N1,000 for structures with 11 floors and above. Residential units in this zone are charged at N1,000,000, with a stage fee of 40 percent.
For Zone two, which encompasses Lagos Island, Kosofe, Somolu, Surulere, Oshodi-Isolo, Lagos Mainland, Apapa, Amuwo-Odofin, Ibeju-Lekki, and Ikeja, the new rates are set at N200 for ground to four-floor buildings, N500 for five to 10-floor buildings, and N800 for buildings with 11 floors or more.
Zone three, which covers Mushin, Ojo, Ikorodu, Alimosho, Agege, and Ifako-Ijaiye, sees rates of N150 for ground to four-floor buildings, N400 for five to 10-floor buildings, and N600 for structures with 11 floors and above.  In Zone four, which includes Epe, Badagry, and Ajegunle, the rates have been adjusted to N100 for ground to four-floor buildings, N300 for buildings with five to 10 floors, and N500 for those with 11 floors or more. The 40 percent reduction in staging fees applies uniformly across all zones.
In summary, the Lagos State government’s decision to reduce the recently hiked building planning permit rates by 40 percent comes as a welcome relief to the construction and real estate industry. This adjustment, prompted by concerns from industry professionals, aims to strike a balance between government revenue and the economic realities faced by property owners, developers, and investors. It is a step towards fostering voluntary compliance and maintaining the vibrancy of the real estate sector in Lagos State.