Real Estate in Ghana: Some latent Problems

The real estate market in Ghana has experienced an unprecedented expansion, particularly because of the positive economic impact in the country. One thing that has contributed to the economic stability enjoyed by Ghana is the noteworthy rise in levels of income throughout the economy during the last one decade. Also, an overwhelming shortage of houses in the urban areas – for commercial and residential property – has made real estate in Ghana a great investment. Real estate firms have partnered with financial institutions to support construction projects. In addition, consumers can easily own property by applying for mortgage loans, which are widely available.

In spite of the tremendous growth in the industry, the underdeveloped land tenure system together with property rights regime may pose a serious danger to market expansion. Matter of fact, if there is no legislative intervention, there is a likelihood of development in the market in the market being hindered. Issues surrounding the property rights regime and the land tenure system can bring hidden transaction costs, which in turn can cause redundant market uncertainties. Sometimes one can buy land in Ghana that has been sold to several unsuspecting victims.

In essence, a lot of property in Ghana is built on leased land. By definition, a lease ought to have a start date as well as an end date. In general, 99 years is the period a lease is granted in the Ghana. If you are looking forward to buying real estate in Ghana, then you ought to understand property leases operate. The standard lease agreement features an assignment clause or a sublease that has to be approved by either the land tenure hold or the head lease.

There are two issues presented here. To begin with, the assignor or lessor – that is the real estate firm must seek permission from the freehold interest holder or the head lease, prior to validating a sublease or assignment. Additionally, the customer – also known as assignee or sublease, is obliged to ascertain that the essential agreements have been obtained. If a properly signed agreement is not obtained from the land tenure interest holder or the head lease, one may experience uncalled-for delays during the registration process. Moreover, there is a possibility of going through a lengthy litigation procedure.

Often after leasing property, most of the interest goes to the lessor or assignor while a customer gets the remainder. Essentially, ownership of land technically reverts to the estate interest owner when the lease expires, unless it is renewed. This is the crux of the matter in the real estate in Ghana. Where there are no codified written laws by traditional bureaucrats, who have the power to transfer ownership of property, changing ownership of stool lands in the nation can be a tedious task.

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