• Friday, June 21, 2024
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Home buyer petitions Lagos govt as developer dithers on transaction promise

The importance of due diligence in real estate investment during political uncertainty | Landwey

A home buyer — a couple based in the United States of America — has petitioned the Lagos State government, alleging that Landwey Investment Limited. a property developer, has dithered in its transaction promise to deliver a housing scheme which the couple subscribed to.

The couple, whose names are Olubukola Akande and Oluyomibo Olaniyan, is demanding for interest payment as a result of loss of value after the developer held on to their money for over 20 months without delivery of the property.

The couple explained that on February 11, 2022, they applied to Landwey to purchase one of their residential properties at the Onyx Urban Prime Three Phase Two along Ogombo Road, adding that, after the application was submitted to Landwey, an offer letter dated February 15, 2022, was given to them for purchase of a three-bedroom terrace duplex at the estate.

According to them, they made a payment of N26 million, an equivalent of $44,084 at the time, from February 18 to March 19, 2022 out of the N56.7 million agreed purchase price of a three-bedroom terrace duplex.

“However, two years down the line, Landwey couldn’t deliver on the agreement, compelling us to ask for a refund and also for damages,” the couple said.

According to them, a partial refund of N10 million was received from Landwey on September 13, 2023, following their default which led to the petition to the Lagos State Real Estate Regulatory Authority (LASRERA) and to the Special Adviser to the Governor on Housing on January 8, 2024.

The petition reads in part: “We call on your good office to save our life investment from being taken away from us. We have perceived Landwey as a sham and scam.

We are confident in the Lagos State government to come to our rescue by intervening such that Landwey can refund our balance even with interest on the money. We also hope that the state will caution the company so that no one else falls victim.”

It should be noted, however, that in a mail sighted by BusinessDay, the couple acknowledged receiving the balance of N16.45 million on Wednesday, January 24, 2023.

The mail reads: “Hello, I hereby acknowledge your refund of N16.45 million. Nevertheless, we must emphasise with you our strong discontent for your unprofessional conduct that led to the refund after over 18 months of our fund transfer to your company with respect to the property in context.

“The waiting period for the refund had detrimentally devalued the money by well over 50 percent of its original value. A legal firm cum recognised valuer firm are working on this to establish our case.

May I let you know that I will formally bring a closure to this transaction, but not until after an adequate litigation process by our legal team is established against you over the extended delay. They shall be demanding for an adequate devaluation compensations and for abuse of trust reposed in you that had caused me an undue and untold stress. Thanks.”

In a phone conversation with the press, Chinonye Peace, a senior staff member at Landwey, said that the couple had reached an agreement with the company and had received a full refund.

“The client was fully refunded in January 2024, and there is an agreement in place with the company regarding any grievances they may have, which are outlined in the contract. We are open to communication from the client’s legal representatives,” Peace assured.

Continuing, she said, “the client’s account has been settled, and they did not request for any additional compensation at the time of the refund. We respect their right to take further action through their legal representation, and we await communication from them. Apart from inquiries from bloggers, we have not received any formal complaints.”

Peace assured further that if the couple sends a formal letter of complaint, the company’s legal team will address it appropriately. “At this moment, there is no specific matter to respond to as we have not received formal communication,” she said.