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Residential Property Tax in Nigeria: All You Need To Know

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As a homeowner, understanding property tax is crucial, as it is a significant recurring expense that can impact your overall housing costs. Property tax is a tax levied by local governments on real estate properties, and the revenue generated is used to fund essential public services such as schools, infrastructure, and emergency services. 

However, the calculation and assessment process of property tax can often seem complex and convoluted, leaving many homeowners feeling perplexed. Understanding residential property tax is essential for homeowners to manage their financial responsibilities and make informed decisions about property ownership. 

Key Takeaways: 

  • Owning a home comes with the responsibility of paying property tax. This contributes to government revenue used to fund public services and infrastructure.
  • Tax rates vary depending on location, property type (residential vs. commercial), and even occupancy status (owner-occupied vs. rented).
  • Research your local tax rate** to estimate your annual bill. It’s usually a percentage of your property’s assessed value.
  • Some localities offer exemptions for seniors, veterans, or low-income homeowners. Investigate if you qualify for any relief.
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Basics of Residential Property Tax

Property tax is a recurring fee that homeowners pay to their local government based on the assessed value of their property. The tax rate is typically expressed as a percentage of the property’s assessed value and is determined by local taxing authorities.

However, Residential property tax is a levy imposed by local governments on the owners of residential properties. It serves as a primary source of revenue for funding public services, including schools, infrastructure, and emergency services. Unlike other forms of taxation, property tax is based on the assessed value of real estate assets.

Difference Between Residential and Commercial Property Tax

Residential and commercial properties are subject to different tax rates and assessment methods. Residential property tax rates tend to be lower than commercial rates, reflecting the varying levels of services and infrastructure required for each property type.

Residential property tax plays a crucial role in funding essential services and maintaining local communities. Understanding how property tax is assessed and utilized can help homeowners effectively manage their financial obligations and advocate for fair taxation policies. 

Factors Affecting Residential Property Tax

Several key factors influence the calculation of residential property tax, including:

Property Assessment Methods

Local taxing authorities use different methods to assess the value of residential properties. Common approaches include the sales comparison approach, income approach, and cost approach. 

Each method considers factors such as property size, location, condition, and comparable sales data to determine the property’s assessed value.

Local Tax Rates

Property tax rates vary by location and are determined by local governments, including municipalities, counties, and school districts. These tax rates are expressed as a percentage of the property’s assessed value and can vary significantly from one jurisdiction to another. 

Homeowners should be aware of their local tax rates and how they impact their property tax obligations.

Property Valuation and Appraisal

The valuation of residential properties is conducted periodically by local assessors or appraisal districts. Assessors evaluate factors such as property improvements, market trends, and economic conditions to determine the property’s assessed value. 

Homeowners have the right to request a review of their property’s valuation if they believe it is inaccurate or unfair.

Understanding Property Tax Assessments

Property tax assessments involve the following key aspects:

Assessment Process

Property assessments are conducted by local taxing authorities to determine the taxable value of residential properties. Assessments may occur annually, biennially, or on a longer cycle, depending on local regulations. Homeowners receive assessment notices detailing their property’s assessed value and tax obligations.

Determining Property Values

Assessors consider various factors when determining the value of residential properties, including recent sales prices of comparable properties, property size, location, age, condition, and improvements. Property values may fluctuate over time based on changes in the real estate market and property-specific factors.

Challenges and Appeals

Homeowners have the right to challenge their property tax assessments if they believe the assessed value is inaccurate or unfair. 

The appeals process typically involves submitting evidence to support the homeowner’s claim and attending a hearing before an assessment review board or similar authority. Successfully appealing a property tax assessment can result in a reduction in the homeowner’s tax liability.

How to Calculate Property Tax in Nigeria

In Nigeria, state governments typically levy property tax which is known as “Land Use Charge” or “Ground Rent.” The calculation of property tax can vary across different states, but generally, it is based on the assessed value of the property and the tax rate set by the state government. Here’s a general formula to calculate property tax in Nigeria:

Assessed Property Value × Property Tax Rate = Property Tax

To estimate your property tax, follow these steps:

Determine the Assessed Property Value

The assessed property value is the value assigned to your property by the state government’s valuation authority. This value may not necessarily be the same as the market value of the property. You can find the assessed value by contacting the relevant state government agency or checking your property documents.

Find the Property Tax Rate

Each state in Nigeria sets its property tax rate, which is usually expressed as a percentage. For example, in Lagos State, the property tax rate can range from 0.125% to 0.0375%, depending on the property type and location. You can obtain the applicable tax rate by contacting the state’s revenue agency or checking their website.

The LUC is calculated based on the property type, location, and other factors. The rates vary for residential, commercial, and other property types:

Residential Properties:

  • The LUC rate for residential properties is 0.456% of the property value.
  • Owner-occupied residential properties are eligible for a 40% discount on the LUC.

Commercial Properties:

  • The LUC rate for commercial properties is 0.456% of the property value.
  • There is no discount for commercial properties.

Industrial Properties:

  • The LUC rate for industrial properties is 0.456% of the property value.
  • There is no discount for industrial properties.

Exceptions and Exemptions:

  • Properties owned and occupied by pensioners are exempt from the LUC.
  • Properties owned by religious organizations and used for public worship are exempt from the LUC.
  • Properties owned by educational institutions and used for educational purposes are exempt from the LUC.
  • Properties owned by charitable organizations and used for charitable purposes are exempt from the LUC.

For more detailed information, you can visit the official website of the Lagos State Internal Revenue Service (LIRS) or the LIRS e-Tax portal. Please note that the specific tax rate applicable to a property can vary depending on factors such as the property type, location, and usage. It’s recommended to consult with a tax advisor or the LIRS for accurate information.

Calculate the Property Tax

Once you have the assessed property value and the tax rate, you can calculate the property tax by multiplying the two values together.

Example Calculation

Let’s assume you own a residential property in Lagos State with an assessed value of ₦20,000,000.

For a non-owner-occupied residential property, the applicable property tax rate is 0.125% per annum.

Assessed Property Value × Property Tax Rate = Property Tax

₦20,000,000 × 0.125% = ₦25,000

In this case, your estimated annual property tax for a non-owner-occupied residential property would be ₦25,000.

However, if it’s an owner-occupied residential property, the applicable property tax rate is 0.0375% per annum.

Assessed Property Value × Property Tax Rate = Property Tax

₦20,000,000 × 0.0375% = ₦7,500

For an owner-occupied residential property with an assessed value of ₦20,000,000, your estimated annual property tax would be ₦7,500.

Payment and Collection of Property Taxes

Property tax payments are governed by specific timelines and procedures, including:

Tax Payment Deadlines

Local governments establish deadlines for property tax payments, typically on an annual or semi-annual basis. Failure to pay property taxes by the specified deadline may result in penalties, interest charges, or even foreclosure proceedings.

Methods of Payment

Homeowners have various options for paying their property taxes, including online payments, mail-in payments, in-person payments at local tax offices, or through escrow accounts managed by mortgage lenders. 

Each payment method may have its own processing times and associated fees, so homeowners should choose the method that best suits their preferences and circumstances.

Consequences of Non-Payment

Non-payment of property taxes can have serious consequences, including late fees, interest charges, and legal action by taxing authorities. In extreme cases, failure to pay property taxes can result in the foreclosure of the property and loss of homeownership rights.

Exemptions and Deductions

Homeowners may be eligible for various exemptions and deductions that can help reduce their property tax burden, including:

Common Exemptions for Residential Properties

Exemptions may be available for certain categories of homeowners, such as senior citizens, veterans, disabled individuals, or homeowners with low incomes. These exemptions may reduce the taxable value of the property or provide discounts on property tax bills.

Eligibility Criteria for Exemptions

Eligibility criteria for property tax exemptions vary by jurisdiction and type of exemption. Homeowners must meet specific requirements related to age, income, disability status, military service, or property use to qualify for exemptions. 

Homeowners need to familiarize themselves with the eligibility criteria and application process for available exemptions.

Potential Tax Deductions

Homeowners may also be eligible to deduct certain property-related expenses from their taxable income, such as mortgage interest, property tax payments, and mortgage insurance premiums. These deductions can help reduce overall tax liabilities for homeowners who itemize their deductions on their federal income tax returns.

Impact of Property Taxes on Homeowners

Property taxes can have significant implications for homeowners, influencing affordability, financial planning, and housing market dynamics:

Budgeting for Property Taxes

Property taxes represent a recurring expense that homeowners must budget for as part of their overall housing costs. Understanding the potential impact of property taxes on monthly budgets is essential for financial planning and homeownership sustainability.

Effects on Affordability and Housing Market

High property tax rates can affect housing affordability, particularly in areas where tax rates are disproportionately high relative to property values. Property tax burdens may influence housing market dynamics, affecting property values, demand for housing, and migration patterns.

Strategies for Managing Property Tax Burden

Homeowners can employ various strategies to manage their property tax burden effectively. These strategies may include exploring exemptions and deductions, appealing property tax assessments, budgeting for tax payments, and advocating for equitable tax policies at the local level.

Government Use of Property Tax Revenue

Property tax revenue plays a crucial role in funding essential public services and infrastructure projects:

Allocation of Tax Revenue

Property tax revenue is allocated to support a wide range of public services and programs, including education, public safety, transportation, parks, and community development initiatives. Local governments use property tax revenue to address community needs and maintain the quality of life for residents.

Funding Public Services and Infrastructure

Property tax revenue provides a stable and reliable source of funding for critical public services and infrastructure projects. Investments in education, public safety, and infrastructure contribute to community development, economic growth, and overall quality of life for residents.

Accountability and Transparency

Transparent governance and accountability mechanisms ensure that property tax revenue is used efficiently and effectively to benefit local communities. 

Oversight by elected officials, citizen advisory boards, and independent auditors helps ensure that property tax funds are allocated responsibly and in accordance with community priorities.


Residential property tax is a fundamental aspect of homeownership that requires careful consideration and understanding. Throughout this guide, we’ve explored the basics of residential property tax, including its definition, assessment methods, payment procedures, and impact on homeowners.

Understanding the factors influencing residential property tax, such as property assessment methods, local tax rates, and valuation processes, empowers homeowners to navigate the taxation system effectively and advocate for fair treatment.

We’ve also discussed the importance of exploring exemptions, deductions, and strategies for managing property tax burdens. By taking advantage of available options and understanding their rights, homeowners can effectively manage their property tax expenses and maximize their financial resources.


Who is responsible for paying residential property tax in Nigeria?

The owner of the residential property is generally responsible for paying the property tax. This applies irrespective of whether the property is occupied or vacant.

How much is residential property tax in Nigeria?

Unfortunately, there’s no single national rate for residential property tax in Nigeria. The tax rate and assessment methods vary by state and even local government area (LGA).

How and where do I pay my residential property tax in Nigeria?

The process for paying property tax can also vary by state and LGA. Here are some common methods:
Local Government Tax Office: You can visit your LGA tax office in person to inquire about payment options and potentially pay directly.
Designated Banks: Some states allow payment through designated banks. Look for information on authorized collection agents from your local tax authority.
Online Platforms: A few states are introducing online property tax payment platforms. Check your LGA website for details.

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