I was sitting peacefully in my house when my landlord’s child brought a shit of paper of paper containing a cost breakdown of ‘service charges’ for this year to bepaid quarterly.
These charges include estate security, dustbin and compound cleaning at N22k monthly which totaled at 264k for twelve months.
You have got to be kidding me!
I stormed their house for the explanation behind these bills. The daughter said her mom is busy so she came out to explain. She said the bills were shared equally for all 3 tenants, they inclusive.
The occupants of the compound include my landlord, my male neighbor in a 3 bedroom, my female neighbor in a miniflat, and me in a one-room.
“My rent for that tiny room that has no kitchen is N300k. Would you pay an additional 250k for charges?” I asked her. Then I walked away. I was raging inside. If I could afford a rent of 550k I certainly wouldn’t be staying in that tiny space and you can’t just drop that amount on me and expect all will be well.
She called a few minutes later to say her mom was looking for me. I went to meet her. Prior to this incident we had a good relationship.
“Happy new year!” Her mom said coldly when I walked in. “Did you read the agreement you signed. It was stated there will be service charges which you must pay. Go back to my lawyer”
I told her those charges are ridiculous, I was given the impression these sort of bills would be around 3k monthly at worst case scenario, what I paid in the last quarter of 2017.
She said these bills are subject to increment and this is the reason why each tenant has their own PHCN meter so these sort of conflicts do not arise. I told her I recharged N5,000 units of electricity since August and I still use it to this day, it shows how low my cost of living is so I don’t understand why I should be slammed that amount for security, dustbin and LAWMA.
She asked if I thought she is trying to cheat me. There is nothing she needs my money for. She has other properties in Lagos and they all pay their charges peacefully. I can go wherever I want and find out these things. She doesn’t need any problematic tenant.
“When does your rent expire?” She asked coldly.
I told her January 2019.
“Please! Please!! Please. I suggest you start looking for another house to stay.”
Then she stood up and walked away.