Sometimes in life, the demands of work and the need for independence turns many of us into mini-flat dwellers and apartment settlers. Others times, we are forced to move to foreign lands for work or studies and find ourselves living alone.
The thought of living alone in a big metropolitan city like Lagos can be utterly daunting, especially if it is your first time. At first, you battle with such thoughts as “won’t it get really lonely?”, “will I cope?” And the answer is sure, as with time you realise that are so many great things about living by yourself in Lagos.
While life alone in Lagos can be very rewarding, there are certain things you need to remember to ensure the days you spend turn out smoothly. If you are thinking about being on your own in Lagos for the first time, here are 5 things to remember:
The alarm clock is your best friend
The problem of traffic congestion in Lagos is no longer a secret nor something that can be ignored. The moment you have found a place to move into within the city, the first thing you need to buy is an alarm clock. Even if you are on a sabbatical and will stay indoors for the period you are in town, you still need an alarm clock to help you schedule the few movements you may need to make. That way you can remind yourself of rush hours and give yourself an early start to any destination.
A good relationship with your landlord saves you a lot of stress
Before you move into a new apartment in Lagos, ensure you have a clear deal with your landlord. Sign a contract that clearly states the amount you will be paying and when will you be doing so. Again try to always fulfil your end of the contract, as that is the way to stay in your landlord’s good graces. No doubt some landlords that will just be terrible no matter what you do, however, while you do not have to make your landlord your best friend, keep your relationship positive, cheerful and fairly simple. Maintain this attitude is important as it becomes an incentive during times you need your landlord help to settle utility bills and other concerns.
Tipping your security guard is the best way to survive
The security guard often called ‘gateman’ or ‘maiguard’ plays an important role when it comes to living a good life if you are doing it solo in Lagos. They are very handy and the tip is usually an essential motivation for them. They can help you runs small errands like fetching water, buy fuel for you in times of fuel scarcity and even sort out problems in your apartment when you are not around. He also keeps you informed on what is going on in your environs. You however need to be careful, study the security guard and trust him before you start to rely on him.
Having a rigid budget and learning to improvise keeps you afloat
You need to have a firm budget. Put everything into consideration: from food to transportation and utility bills. Learn to cook rather than always buying food outside, it will help you cut costs. Also, learn to improvise rather than always purchasing new appliances. Again, try how to do things yourself rather than employing external help to get things done. YouTube has all the DIY instructions you need so use it instead. Ensure you remain strict with spending, otherwise you will severely cut into your budget, and cause bigger problems for yourself.
Secure windows and doors are essential
Before you move in, ensure the windows and doors are secure and possibly impenetrable. This is very important for your safety, especially if you are living in a notorious part of the city. While security guards are employed to make sure no suspicious individual enter without your permission, you need to be extra cautious as some unwelcome guests can be very innovative.