Renting an apartment in Lagos is never an easy task albeit what is more grueling is the manner of discrimination some prospective tenants are subjected to when it looks like they’ve finally found that apartment that tickles their fancy.
This discrimination comes in different forms, from ethnic discrimination, to discrimination based on social class or even disability related discrimination but the most common of them is gender discrimination against single ladies.
As if the stress of house hunting is not enough, some Lagos Landlords compound the woes of renters who are single ladies making it seemingly impossible for them to get an apartment of their choice just because of their marital status.
Some single ladies have perfected the act of luring their male friends to stand in as their partners due to the experience they’ve had with ruthless landlords or the experiences of their other female folks.
Invariably, if you are not a married woman in Lagos, prepare for an arduous interview session with your prospective Landlord
Although, there are some exceptions to this form of discrimination, some Landlords don’t really bother about the kind of tenants their property attracts. As long as the renter can boast of a steady or fat income, whatever moral ineptitude he or she puts on display or plans to put on display won’t come under scrutiny if the renter doesn’t constitute a nuisance in the building. And if you are the type that always sorts your landlord in cash and kind knowing fully well that it’s his weakness, then you may as well be living like a lord in your rented apartment.
However, the situation is kind of different in neighbourhoods around University campuses and tertiary institutions. In such places you will find a large convergence of unmarried men, women, ladies and guys in rented apartments
Also in compounds that have basically studio apartments or self-contained rooms, landlords may welcome the idea of renting the apartment out to single ladies rather than married couples simply to control the population of people on their property. This is to guard against overstretching the facilities and infrastructure inherent on the property
That being said, many Lagos Landlords prefer to rent their apartments out to married couples even if they are actually not married in the real sense of it. As long as a supposed couple can present themselves before a Lagos Landlord as two people who live or want to live together, the job is half done.
There is this unwholesome belief that single ladies who decide to live alone are unstable, erratic, prone to bad behaviour and irresponsible. Sadly this notion is subtle when bachelors are involved.
It is really pathetic that anyone would deny someone the right to rent an apartment simply because she is a single lady. Who says a lady can’t decide to live alone especially if she’s matured enough to, loves her privacy and above all, has the financially capabilities.
Asides that do these landlords think of the fact that a single lady might actually want to rent an apartment on the premise that she got a job that automatically would take her away from her place of domicile.
The argument that many single ladies who stay alone or decide to stay alone could be ladies of easy virtue or club girls should not even be brought to the fore; unfortunately we are in a society that shows little or no respect to our female folks and are insensitive to their plight.
A law promulgated to kick against this form of discrimination thereby serving as deterrent to other Landlords would be a step in the right direction; unfortunately our society has lost its sense of reasoning.