Women lie to rent flats
In Lagos, a fast-growing megacity with a population of about 20 million people, the housing rush has bestowed unprecedented power into the hands of the landlords. They are often found charging tenants a year’s rent in advance along with additional agents’ fees. Since the demand outweighs supply, property owners are free to reject applicants who fail to meet their strict image of a reliable tenant.
So who is a “reliable tenant?”
The one who can sustain a rental payment without a glitch? This is an obvious answer, but not for most Lagos property owners. Actually, why blame Lagos? This is a story of every fast-growing city with conservative, old-school Gen Xers. People who believe single women are unable to take care of their finances and thus will be more likely to default on their payments. Such stereotypes exist in and around us, the struggle of an earning, self-reliant woman is markedly different from a man. The gap becomes more obvious when the landlords believe a man’s (father, brother, relative, or a friend’s) opinion/presence and reassurance than the apartment seeker’s (woman’s) words.
Despite our high-paying jobs, we, single millennial women tend to face repeated rejections. If the gender stereotypes regarding finances were not enough some landlords go on to give the unasked unsolicited advice of staying with our family that is parents or getting ourselves married for a better future. Some even think unmarried women should be living with their parents until they tie the knot.
Tell me again why we are given such free advices? and why even after being financially secured the hurdle of finding an apartment becomes a monumental task?
As a result, we lie.
Lie to get a roof on our head.