Some Good Good Goodies. Keep them in your wallet

20180130_084351Source: Google

Special dedication to Abrafi, Ellworth, Nick, Laurentine and Billey.
Your curious minds inspired this write up
How do I negotiate with buyers as a young Realtor?
A Realtor is basically a real estate agent, affiliated to a professional body like the National Association of Realtors.
To be able to negotiate with buyers efficiently, knowledge of the property you are dealing with as a Realtor is of key importance. Prior knowledge of the market guides the price you put up for negotiations and puts you on top of your game during negotiations. It is very important that you dedicate much time to studying the property market and trends as a young realtor
As a foreigner, what does it take to secure a land in Ghana in my name?
To acquire (the purchase process) a land in Ghana as a foreigner is no different from a Ghanaian. You may want to read our previous post on the steps to land acquisition in Ghana for more enlightenment.
The difference comes when it comes to registering the land. Before the land document of a foreigner is accepted for registration, the Lands Commission does a little verification to be sure if the owner is a Ghanaian or a foreigner. Once it is verified that the owner is a foreigner, only a maximum of 50 years of ownership would be allowed for registration.
Before the registration process begins, it is required that stamp duty (an acquisition tax payable to the Ghana Revenue Authority) is paid.
These are a few requirements to be satisfied before land will be accepted for the payment of stamp duty:
• Original copies of land document or certified true copies
• The document type of must be clearly stated (Whether it is a lease, assignment, conveyance, sub-lease or a gift)
• Date of agreement.
• Names, signature, contact and addresses of parties.
• Names, signature, contact and addresses of witnesses/deponents.
• Site plan showing the precise location. This should be approved by a licensed Surveyor and approved or signed by the Regional Surveyor of the region in which land is situated.
• It must bear a Solicitor’s seal, have the Oath-of-Proof executed, and the deponent column completed and signed by the grantor’s principal witness.
• Commencement date and term of transaction
• Consideration
• Narration/Schedule, vividly describing the location of the land
Why do people abroad pay mortgages? Why should I lose my house if I can’t pay for it? Will it start in Ghana soon?
A mortgage is an agreement that allows you to borrow money from a bank or a similar organization in order to buy a house, or to use one’s house to secure a loan. The way and manner in which mortgages are regulated vary from country to country, depending on the law that regulates mortgages in that country. A mortgage may be acquired to build, to complete a building that has started or to purchase land. In mortgages, the lender is known as the Mortgagee, whilst the borrower is known as the Mortgagor.
People abroad pay mortgages because they borrow money from lenders or lending institutions to acquire building, and have agreed to pay.
Mortgages in Ghana are regulated by the Mortgages Decree, 1972 (NRCD 96). In Ghana, mortgages are only an encumbrance on whatever property is used for mortgage. They do not give the mortgagor the right to possession. Even when the mortgagor has defaulted in an act specified by the mortgage agreement, he is not outrightly entitled to possession till a Court has given the mortgagee the authority to do so.
In this case, if the mortgagor is unable to pay for the loan within the period specified in the mortgage agreement, the mortgagee does not have the outright right to take possession of the mortgaged property or to sell it unless a Court has directed it to do so. In moments when the Court deems it fit to sell the property to defray the cost, the sale is done under the direction of the Court, in what is termed a judicial sale.
Why can’t land be owned forever? What is the basis of this law?
This law is to safeguard Ghanaians from being landless in the future. If no limit is placed on the number of years land can be owned, a time will come where there would no longer be lands for the future generation. Foreigners may probably become owners of our lands here in Ghana, as most of the possession of lands would be perpetual.
Are the databases of Lands Commission detailed and up to date enough to help me know who the true owner of land is, How many people have paid or bought the land previously?
The answer is yes, as far as Lands Commission is involved. Meaning that, the Lands Commission only has details of landed transactions that have passed through the Lands Commission. The Lands Commission, therefore has records of transactions at any point at which the Lands Commission is involved. However, there may be other transactions concerning that land which may not have passed through the Lands Commission. That is why it is not enough to solely rely on the records of Lands Commission.
How can I know who is genuine and who is not at Lands Commission?
To be sure if one is a true worker of Lands Commission, you may have to do a little scout in the Commission to ensure that whoever you are dealing with is a true worker at the Lands Commission.
I don’t understand how land owners can sell one land to 5 people and each having documents to that land?
There may be different documents pertaining to land and the fact that a person has a document to land may not necessarily be a proof of the person’s title to land. Similarly, a person may have a legal document pertaining to a piece of land (for e.g. an indenture) but may not have begun the land title registration process. The process begins upon the payment of stamp duty. The land certificate is a true proof of title to land.

 

Digital Land Title Registration; “Yay or Nay”

Is the Digital Land Title Registration Proposal Likely to Fix Our Land Administration Setbacks Considering the Failure of Numerous Attempts Made Under the National Land Policy, Purposely Enacted for Effective Land Management and Administration Carried Out Under the Framework of LAP or Is It Going to Be Yet Another Platform for People to Waste/Make Money

This write-up is inspired by a question from Mubarak Abubakari, one of our cherished readers. This is dedicated to you, Muba😊

2017-12-16-PHOTO-00003799Source: Google 

The digital land registration has become of National concern, following the Vice-President’s recent promise to ensure the digitization of land title registration process (land records) by 2018 as part of the digital Ghana Agenda. This, he said is expected to speed up service delivery and block opportunities for corruption in the land administration process. He mentioned the risk of being defrauded as a major problem faced by landowners.

Since the year 1994, a number of attempts had been put in place to improve land registration system. The first is the National Land Policy which was introduced in the year 1994 with the aim of making judicious use of the nation’s land and its natural resources by all sections of the Ghanaian society in support of various socio-economic activities undertaken in accordance with sustainable resource management principles and in maintaining a viable ecosystem. This, however could not stand the test of time due to certain loopholes in the policy. To address these problems, the Land Administration Policy (LAP) was introduced in 2003 to develop a sustainable and well-functioning land administration system that is fair, efficient and effective, decentralized and that which ensures land tenure security, to reduce poverty and enhance economic/social growth in the country.

The Digital Title Registration System is therefore set out as a means of solving some of the problems such as the multiple sale of land, lack of effective documentation leading to litigation and indeterminate customary land boundaries leading to litigation identified in land administration.

The question is, is the proposed Digital Title Registration System going to fix the above mentioned setbacks?

The answer is a BIG YES, only if the correct measures are put in place for it to work

The first is to ensure that an adequate land information system is provided. Land Information Systems are at the core of an effective Land Administration.

As it stands now, the Customer Service Access Unit ( CSAU)  which is a LAP initiative has provided a one-stop shop (front desk) for submissions, payments and collection in the process of land title registration. Although there is a front desk, clients keep doing follow ups from the back offices during their title registration process, and hence, bringing in human interference in the process. This in turn, causes delays in title registration. Therefore, the human interference which the CSAU sought to eliminate has not fully been eliminated. Human Interference is the number one cause of challenges in attempts to digitize the system. This is chiefly due to the absence of an effective Land Information System.

csau.jpgSource: Google

The 1st come, 1st serve principle should be highly observed with kin supervision, once the digitization kickstarts. With an effective records system, documents should be worked on with regards to who came first without the need for clients to keep paying their way through the process.

Adequate Land Information Systems should be put in place such that, personnel from the Lands Commission can go about stamp duty inspections, among other similar processes required for the acquisition of a land title certificate at ease without the need to be guided by the landowner. Government should be ready to pay workers of the Lands Commission well to eliminate deliberate attempts by Land Officers to slow down the system.

It is however not enough to put measures in place. It must work, and for it to work, each and every one of us has a part to play in its effectiveness to ensure its success!

 

To Own A Condo; Steps to Follow

For some time now, our focus has been on high rise buildings, specifically luxury apartments. Today is the very last bit of the series and it is specifically dedicated to Eunice Peterson, who has been the inspiration behind this.

The acquisition process of apartments may have some slight differences depending on the company involved. However, some essential procedures remain constant for most apartments, as far as Ghana is concerned. Here are some general steps to be followed in the acquisition of apartments.

Identification of the property

Identification of property is the first step to the purchase of an apartment. This is where the prospective buyer identifies the type of apartment he or she intends to buy. How does one identify a property?

Properties are identified through advertisements in newspapers, the internet, billboards and posters.  Because the identification process can be hectic, the tenant may decide to engage the services of an Estate Agent to do the work of identification to save them the stress and also to acquire expertise services. During this period the prospective buyer must visit and inspect the site of the property to see the development and the owner to help draw conclusions as to whether he or she wants to proceed with the purchase the property.#1Source: Google 

Draft an offer letter

At this stage, the prospective buyer needs to write an offer letter to the owner. In the offer letter, the buyer must declare his intentions to buy the property at the market price, terms of payment and period with which he wants to pay over. All negotiations on the market price must be done at this stage.

#2Source: Google

Acceptance letter

The owner sends an acceptance letter to the prospective buyer. This letter is a confirmation of the seller’s approval of the offer letter.

#3Source: Google

Conduct a search

The onus lies on the buyer to perform due diligence before purchasing his or her property. In doing this, one must conduct a search at the Land Registration Division of the Lands Commission, which reveals all the details of the property and if there are any encumbrances on it. He can further go on to do background checks in the vicinity. If the buyer is confident with the information acquired, then he or she can go ahead to draft the agreement.

#4Source: Google

Sold and Purchased Agreement

The preamble of this agreement is a copy of the land document (indenture). It also describes exclusively the property you are purchasing. The necessary payments are made at this stage.

The Indenture

An indenture is a legal document that shows the terms of agreement between the purchaser and the vendor of the land. It includes the date of the document, type of the document, term of document, consideration, the parties involved, signature of witnesses, oath of proof and certificate of proof and the schedule. After the indenture is prepared, it is advisable that the prospective buyer goes further to register his or her land in order to secure it. Registration is key because the indenture and site plan are not enough evidence to show the buyer is the genuine owner. For example, in a case where the seller is dead and there is a dispute over the property, the buyer could be accused of forgery if he or she has no certificate of title. He may only be entitled to equitable interests which are only discretionary.

In order to start the registration process, one must obtain the yellow card from the Lands Commission. However, there are requirements one must meet to obtain a yellow card and they are as follows:

  1. Stamp duty
  2. Site plan
  • Indenture

COPY OF A YELLOW CARD

yellow card.png

Then registration kicks off from here

7 Reasons Why Life In a Luxury Apartment Can be Pretty Much Exciting

My grand mum used to say “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, different strokes for different folks or one man’s meat is another man’s poison”. She was just trying to help me understand that different things appeal to different people. In this context I would say that your choice of residence depends on you!!!! “You” meaning your personality, preferences, priorities and in some cases your finances. Luxury Apartments (Condominiums) come with their own advantages and disadvantages. Here are 7 reasons why you may want to live in luxury apartments (condominiums)

1. Regular Maintenance

Most luxury apartments have an on-site maintenance team which sees to the proper upkeep of the building and addresses physical faults and defects of the building. This saves the owner time from going to outsource someone for the work to be done because an in-house team is just a call away.

regular maintenanceSource: Google

2. Good Location

I must admit that most of these high rise apartments have been strategically situated in the centre of Accra. Places like Villagio, Polo Courts and just to mention a few are all close to all centres of commerce and recreational areas.

good locSource: Google

3. Access to an array of amenities

A good number of these high rise buildings provide residents with communal facilities such as gyms, swimming pools and restaurants.  When residents patronize these facilities they are able to meet new people, network and establish long lasting friendships.

amenitiesSource: Google

4. Safety and security

Most of these apartments are built with strong security systems such as cctv cameras, finger print access systems and manned with security personnel. This makes residents assured of their safety and protection of their possessions.

safety and securitySource: Google

5. Cheaper insurance

Because Insurance is catered for by the entire Condominium Community, it is cheaper to insure luxury apartments

insuranceSource: Google

6. Prestige

Living in condos come with the “feel good” factor attached to it. The prestige attached to living in condos, combined with the serene atmosphere makes it a preferred option to most people.

prestige

Source: Google

7.It is Easier to Own a Luxury Apartment than to Build

The hustle that comes with building yourself has made luxury apartments a preferred choice to many

easierSource: Google

Despite these and many other exciting facts about living in an apartment, they are not without disadvantages. Here are a few of them

    Problematic Neighbours

In every group of people there are bad nuts. In as much as the apartment style of living provides a sense of community it can also be a nuisance to tenants when there are deviant neighbours who make so much noise and flout rules.

luxury apartmentSource: Google

Lack of personal outdoor space

When we talk about outdoor space we are referring to gardening space where you can cultivate beautiful plants and add an aesthetic touch to your apartment. Most of these high arise apartments do not accommodate this feature which is a disadvantage to people with a green thumb.

This is an overview of the apartment kind of living and we hope you will be able to make the best decision.

Stay informed as Saasepedia, enlightens  you more on the acquisition procedure for apartments.