Lagos Land Use Charge Goes Up

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The Lagos State Government will soon increase the Land Use Charge, LUC, to be paid  by landlords across the state.

Governor Babatunde Fashola, who received members of the Nigeria Institution of  Estate Surveyors and Valuers who made him the patron of the body yesterday, said it  was agreed that the LUC should be reviewed every seven years.

He stated that the first seven years elapsed in 2009 and that because of the global  meltdown, the state did not review the charge in order not to create burden for the  people, adding that the rate chargeable by the state, which is 0.34 percent,  remained the lowest in the property world.

“We have left the rate at 0.34 percent.  A time will come that we will have to  review it.  We need to get more money to be put back into the system,” said Fashola  and promised to work with the estate valuers in this regard.

On the 15 percent commission being collected by estate agents and valuers from new  tenants as commission before they could rent an apartment, the governor frowned at  it and called for a reduction.

“We want to begin to see a downward review in the rate and commission being  charged.  Housing is still a major challenge.  We want to see how we can bring down  the rent charges from three years or two years being collected by landlords to one  year or half a year,” he added.

Fashola urged the estate surveyors and valuers to pay their taxes appropriately,  stressing that, “we look forward to a day when many professionals will be tax  compliant.”

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The governor assured that government would use every government policy to open up  the economy and reduce crime, adding that “we will soon deploy our Geographical  Information System, GIS, which is the first in the West African sub-region.”

Earlier, National President, Nigeria Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers,  Mr. Bode Adediji, said the institution would like to work with the state government  in the area of LUC, saying that the observable challenges aassociated with the  introduction of the charges could be managed and resolved through the conscious  engagement of its members both in public and private sector.

He, however, lamented that the nation was blessed with abundant human and natural  resources, but faced with abysmal leadership failure which has resulted in the  people being poor, caused decay in infrastructure, collapse of the education system  and unprecedented of insecurity.

Adediji urged Fashola to champion the crusade of rebuilding the nation and move it  to greater heights.

—Kazeem Ugbodaga

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