Why you need a residential Landlord-Tenant Agreement

Landed properties are some to the most priced possessions in Benin City and Nigeria in general. I remember my dad telling me how much he bought land for NGN1000 Naira during the early days and now it’s worth millions. My dad’s real-estate process was like this.

Buy —– Build—– Rent—- repeat

my dad real-estate plan

He buys these properties at cheap prices from developing communities, builds on them and rent them out for profit most time on yearly rent.

My dad fell short of one thing, “Writing contracts”. He gave these houses out based on oral agreement with friendship at its core. Which meant, tenants didn’t have to follow any strict rule but do as they see fit.

Sad story, my dad ended up losing most of his real-estate profits.

You have spent a lot of money building your house and acquiring the documents. We don’t want you to lose any more money to impossible tenants with a knack for problems or wahala as its fondly called here. That’s why in this article, I will teach you how to write a simple residential landlord-tenant agreement for your house.

Let’s go.

The components a residential Landlord-Tenant Agreement


There won’t be any need writing an agreement if no one is involved. First, you have to state clearly who will be involved. State your name as the owner of the property and the name of the tenant all in full, just like it appears on their identity cards.

Property Address

State where the property is located in full. If there are any adjoining street or major building around, state it. This is very essential for landed properties in developing areas. This will ensure you remember where the property is if you ended up leasing it for a long time

Agreement to rent

I have seen residential houses turned into all kind of business simply because the tenants wants to generate side income. Destroying the landlord’s house in the process.  

Go ahead and state clearly the house is for residential purpose only and cannot be turned into some motel just because it’s well-built.  Don’t do this and you will experience huge lose down the line. You can imagine coming for inspection and you see with your eyes pulling out of their socket. Why? Your tenant have turned your house into a market place.

Your house will be overused.

Term of tenancy

How long will the agreement last? Is it forever like a sale or for just a year? State in clear terms how long the residential landlord tenant agreement will last.

Say when the rental will start and when exactly it will end.


Settle the issue of money with your tenants in clear cut our terms. Don’t drag it forward. State how much they will pay each month or each year. If there will be a late charge after the rent is due, do state it in the document.

Limitations on the use of the premises

Specifying what your rental property will be used for in your residential Landlord-Tenant agreement will give you peace of mind and the ability to exempt yourself should your tenant use your property for the wrong purpose.

Include the number of maximum occupants you want in the apartment at a time, a clause for illegal substances possession and property damage.


You need to tell the tenant if pets are allowed in your property or not. Some physically challenge occupants will need pets to go around the neighbourhood and carry out other essential tasks.

Alterations or repairs

In real estate, repair is a must. Though most are minor alterations. In your residential Landlord-Tenant agreement, state clearly who will be responsible for repairs. If it’s you the landlord, let the tenant know the extent and maximum cost burden you will be willing carry when the tenant break things.

Grounds for termination

What’s the clause for terminating the residential Landlord-Tenant agreement? On what grounds will you serve a notice and begin eviction procedures as required by law.


Some agreement also contains rules for assignment and subletting, utilities and maintenance responsibilities, right of access, extended absence notification and any additional provisions.

Why you need residential Landlord-Tenant agreement for your Benin City home.

  1. It ensures your house is occupied by a responsible law-abiding citizen, who are ready to follow through on your Teams and conditions.
  2. You gain maximum returns for your home. With the right contract, you are sure to spend less on maintenance and repairs and more on expanding your real-estate business.
  3. You spend less money judging cases when you have a legal document in place. All you have to do when you have a disagreement is present the legally signed residential Landlord-Tenant agreement.
  4. A residential Landlord-Tenant agreement ensures you are not sued for the wrong reasons. Only if you go against the law yourself, a good contract makes it impossible for a lawsuit to be fired against you by your tenant.

Now, you see it’s important to have a contract in place, properly signed by intending tenants before they move into the property.

We have prepared a residential Landlord-Tenant agreement template in pdf for you to get started with. Click here to download it.

Most landlords in Benin City don’t like the headache that comes with managing their properties. Don’t be worried. We don’t only build, sell and furnish properties for you, we also manage your properties as well.

Send us a buzz through our contact form and we will get back to you with 24 hours.

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