ESSENTIALS OF A VALID LEASE

OSHO V. FOREIGN FINANCE CORPORATION AND ANOR ; INT’L TEXTILE IND. (Nig) Ltd v. ADEREMI

1. CERTAINTY OF TERMS: 

The terms of a lease must be certain or ascertainable.

The commencement date and the expiration date must be expressly stated

RATIONALE-This is because the lease cannot enure in perpetuity- LACE V. CHANTLER

UBA V. TEJUMOLA AND SONS LTD; 

NB- The terms in the lease were held ascertainable as they were dependent on future contingencies certain to take place. BOSAH V. OJI; OKECHUKWU V. ONUORAH.

 

EFFECT OF UNCERTAINTY OF TERMS IN A LEASE

• A lease that will commence when the first daughter of the family gets married is uncertain; thus void.
• A lease that had no date was declared invalid- AMINU V. NZERIBE
• A lease until the landlord requires the land for widening of the road was declared void.

PRUDENTIAL ASSURANCE CO. V. LONDON RESIDUARY BODY 

• A lease for as long as the company is trading was held void BIEREL  V. CAREY.
➢ A lease for a future lease is void UNLESS a definite time of commencement can be inferred from it.

 

2. CERTAINTY OF PROPERTY: 
• The property in a lease must be described with specific dimensions.
• Address should be clear not vague

 

3. CERTAINTY OF PARTIES: The parties to a lease must have capacity to contract the lease agreement. The parties may be natural or juristic persons.-UBA v. Tejumola & Sons Ltd.

Parties must be sufficiently described-ODUTOLA V. PAPERSACK (NIG.) LTD

 

4. THE LEASE MUST BE CREATED IN A PROPER MANNER:
• Must be evidenced in writing.
• Where it is for 3 YEARS AND ABOVE, it must be by deed.
• However, the rule in WALSH v. LONSDALE states that an agreement to create a lease will still operate as a lease notwithstanding that it is not created under seal. This is based on the maxim “equity looks at the intent rather than the form”.
• Where the lease is for a term BELOW 3 YEARS; it may be by agreement under the hand of the parties. This may be simply called a TENANCY AGREEMENT.

NB-S.4 STATUTE OF FRAUDS;S.67PCL;S.5(LAW REFORM (CONTRACTS) LAW CAP 114.

 

5. EXCLUSIVE POSSESSION: 

The lessee must have the right to exclude every person from the property including the lessor or landlord, EXCEPT for the conditions that the landlord may enter the property for repairs.-UMEZURIKE V.GEORGE. . A document that purports to be a lease, but does not confer exclusive possession is not a leaseCLORE V. THEATRICAL PROPERTIES LTD

 

6. LEASE MUST BE IN WRITING.

 

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