What you need to know before buying property in Ghana
Real Estate and development in Ghana has been a rapidly growing over the past several years. Ghana offers much to travellers and expats and even more to Ghanains looking to invest in property or land in Ghana and process can be very rewarding. However there are some important things to be sure of before you make any purchase. Who owns the land?
Be sure to validate that the person/group you are buying real estate from is the correct owner. There have been many instances of land being sold by unauthorized owners, or being sold to more than one buyer. To protect yourself ensure a land title review is performed at the appropriate government office and a land valuation is also performed. There is usually a fee for these which is payed for at the buyers expense. It is well worth the price.
Always review all documents yourself, and involve yourself in all steps of the property buying process.
As an extra safety measure have an independent lawyer review your documents before you transfer funds.
Ghana Real Estate Development Requirements
If you are purchasing undeveloped land in Ghana there are often development timeline requirements set forth by the government. It is common that you are required to build at least basic infrastructure such as a well and building or foundation within a 2 year period. Developing the land also helps to ensure less questions of ownership, or unwanted harvesting of trees or other assets of the property. Development requirements should be determined before any purchase at a governmental office.
Most property or land sales in Ghana are made on a leased basis. No individual or company may own the land indefinitely. Sales are made for various leasing terms from 25 to 150 years. Usually leasing terms are shorter for Non-Ghanaians but every leasing term is negotiable. Be sure to discuss with your agent.
The best way to ensure a safe step into Ghana property ownership is to use an official, registered Ghanain real estate agency. If you have any questions or concerns feel to contact us here at New Ghana Property and we will be happy to put you in contact with a reputable agency.
Good luck in the search for your new home!
Ghana is a developing West African state with a population of 26 million and a typical warmer climate and a cooler raining season. Ghana is a democratic and politically peaceful country ranking 58th on the Global Peace Index. That said, the thought of relocating or deciding where to live in Accra, Ghana can be daunting when you have no idea how the housing, transportation, and social amenity conditions are. Fortunately for you, this article seeks to inform you about the top nine best places to live in Ghana.
1 – Airport Residential Area, Accra
Airport Residential Area is 5 minutes’ drive west of Kotoka International Airport and the finest place to live in Accra. It is quiet, clean and very secure. Prominent Ghanaians like the former President John Kuffour and foreign nationals reside here. There are many top hotels and serviced apartments to choose from. Public transportation is cheap but not as efficient so most residents travel in their cars. Shopping malls, banking halls and ATMs, schools, hospitals, pharmacies, restaurants, embassies, and airline offices are all located in this area. A section of high-rise buildings called “Airport City” offers this area a promising future. Acquiring property in the Airport Residential area is extremely pricey and the cost of living is expensive to the middle-income class.
2 – Cantonments, Accra
Cantonments is the second finest place to live in Accra. It is located 5km west of Kwame Nkrumah Circle and 15 minutes’ drive southwest of the airport. Same caliber of people above live here. There are many nicely built, 3-4 bedroom gated community estate houses to choose from. You might decide to live in Cantonments with your family because the Ghana International School (GIS) which is located here. You will have to travel 10-15 minutes to nearby Osu when you wish to visit the supermarket, ATM, etc. Be financially robust; the cost of living in Cantonments is not for everyone.
3) Osu, Accra
Osu is not a planned residential area but has service apartments for middle-income class and foreign nationals who enjoy nightlife. Built in the midst of century old buildings, the popular Oxford Street in Osu is noted for its many restaurants, cafés and brisk 24/7 businesses. There is a joint for Chinese, Italian, Thai and Mexican food if you enjoy these. Like Airport Residential, you can find just about anything in Osu.
4) Labone, Accra
Labone is to the south of Cantonments with no clear border in between. It stretches to Labadi on the east and to the coast. Middle class nationals and Lebanese Ghanaians live here with their families. Apart from guesthouses, there are no serviced apartments or top hotels. Housing agents can help you find suitable 3-4 bedroom homes belonging to rich individuals for a minimum rent period of two years. Like Cantonments, you will have to travel 15-20 minutes to Osu to shop, eat, etc.
5) Roman Ridge, Accra
Roman Ridge is the fifth finest place to live in Accra, west of Airport Residential. It has several excellent hotels and serviced apartments for rent. It is a quiet area with few offices here and there. For everything else you will have to travel to neighbouring areas.
6) East Legon, Accra
East Legon is approximately 14km northeast of the city center and is home to wealthy Ghanaians who have returned from abroad to live in their extravagant homes. Housing and real estate agents can help you find suitable accommodation in this area. There is a shopping mall that serves the area.
7) West Legon, Accra
West Legon is 13km north from the city center. This residential area is also home to wealthy Ghanaians who have returned from abroad. The serviced apartments and estate housing in this area are suitable for business owners and international students studying at the University of Ghana (Legon).
8) Dzorwulu, Accra
Dzorwulu Residential Area is 30 minutes’ drive southwest of the airport and 6.5km southeast of the city center. There are fewer serviced apartments and estate housing in Dzorwulu. Everything else about this area is similar to Labone.
Residential property prices are surging to an all-time high, mainly buoyed by the influx of non-resident Ghanaians and foreign homebuyers, according to local real estate experts.
In Accra, the country’s capital, the average house price was GHS315,000 (US$86,957) in mid-2013, about 12% higher than in the rest of Ghana, based on a collection of house prices listed on Tonaton.com.
In recent years Ghana has seen a steady stream of other European and American passport holders of African descent arriving at Kotoka International airport, responding to the resource boom and a manufacturing boom. They collect their possessions from shipping containers at Tema port and search for homes in Accra’s popular residential areas. They are coming for what seem like the limitless opportunities in what has often been seen as one of Africa’s best-run countries.
Mercedes and Lexus abound, with designer label clad passengers. The district around the embassies and consulates is awash with the totems of success – giant satellite dishes, gated driveways that stretch into the distance. There are luxury housing estates that would not be incongruous if situated in Beverly Hills. The social elites and expatriates can find all their home comforts and Western goods at prices far in excess of the average Ghanaian’s pocket. Supermarkets and restaurants cater to their every need in air-conditioned comfort.
Yet this is a very poor country, marked by high inequality.
The most expensive area in Accra is the Airport Residential Area, with average house prices of GHS950,000 (US$262,250). Other expensive areas in the capital include East Legon GHS800,000 (US$220,842) and Spintex GHS600,000 (US$652,632).
The least expensive houses in Accra can be found in Madina with averages price of GHS200,000 (US$55,211), followed by Kwabenya and Abokobi, with average house prices of GHS245,000 (US$67,633) and GHS210,000 (US$57,971), respectively.
In the rest of Ghana, house prices remained cheap, at an average of GHS280,000 (US$77,295) over the same period. In Kumasi, the average price of a house stood at GHS220,000 (US$60,732) in mid-2013. In Sekondi-Takoradi, the average house price was GHS180,000 (US$49,690) over the same period. Cape Coast has the least expensive houses in Ghana, at an average of GHS120,000 (US$33,126).
But for all the hype about Ghana’s growth and its good government, the country is now in trouble again. The country has just decided to begin the process of applying for an IMF bailout.
The economy grew by 5.5% in 2013, a sharp slowdown from the annual GDP growth rates of 7.9% in 2012, 15% in 2011, and 8% in 2010, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The economy is projected to grow by about 4.8% in 2014 – and
There are no restrictions on foreigners buying property in Ghana. However, there are four forms of land ownership, some of which cannot be privately owned. Each involves differing modes of acquisition. These are: Government Land, Vested Land, Customary/Stool Land, and Family/Private Land.
Potential buyers should first consult the Ghana Investment Promotion Center regarding procedures, and to be directed to the appropriate agencies involved in legally acquiring property, since identifying legal ownership can be a problem.