The importance of having a Tenancy Agreement in Nigeria
A Tenancy Agreement is written agreement between a Landlord and his tenant which states the agreed terms and condition of the tenancy
The importance a Tenancy Agreement is as follows;
- A tenancy agreement protects the right of both the Landlord and the tenant by streamlining agreed terms and conditions acceptable by both parties.
- A tenancy agreement clearly states the responsibilities of both parties. E.g where there is a major structural change to be done in the property, the landlord might step in.
- The Landlord has the power to determine the time in which he would put the tenant on notice to repossess his property if the tenant is in default of any of the agreement terms or where there is failure to pay rent as at when due. The law only takes effect where there is no written agreement and it depends on the provisions of the law.
- A tenancy agreement helps Protect a Tenant from unlawful eviction.
- In a Tenancy agreement, the mode in which the tenancy can be terminated would be properly defined. This could be by a written notice served personally, via email or pasted on the wall, or orally stated, etc.
- A tenancy agreement gives the Landlord the opportunity to state the way and manner in which he prefers the demised property to be used. For instance, a Landlord may prohibit the tenant from assigning, subletting or even lodging another person in the property or he might prohibit the property to be used for commercial purposes.
- A tenancy agreement states the consideration for the property(rent) thereby avoiding dispute as to the amount of rent for the property.
- Another importance, is that a tenancy agreement can protect the tenant from unnecessary increase in rent.
- The duration of the tenancy is another important term that can be covered by a tenancy agreement. The agreement helps to state when the tenancy takes effect and the expected date the tenancy is to elapse.
- The parties can jointly agree to what would amount to a breach of the agreement which can be a ground for dissolving the tenancy e.g Tenant A and the Landlord agreed that Tenant A must not conduct any illegal activity in the premises or and Tenant A was found with an illegal drug. The Landlord can on that ground terminate the Tenancy.
Finally, although we did not exhaust all the advantages of a tenancy agreement here but it is imperative to note that even where there is no tenancy agreement there are implied conditions as to tenancy. One of which includes right to peaceful possession and enjoyment. This is an implied condition by law enjoyed by a tenant even though some tenancy agreements may not state it.
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