Different types of buildings in Nigeria and their features

buildings in Nigeria

Buildings in Nigeria come in various styles, forms, and shapes — from mansions to bungalows to terraces. These different types of houses all have something unique about them. The whole profession of architecture is dedicated to the designing and construction of such buildings — with particular attention paid to aesthetic values.

Over the years, some housing styles have gone in and out of fashion. However, the core concept of a home remains — a place where one can seek shelter

Below are the different types of buildings in Nigeria and their features:


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Bungalow houses are simple single-story houses without a basement. And it happens to be the most popular residential and commercial type of building in Nigeria.

Bungalow houses are either detached or semi-detached. The detached ones are a single-standing property that does not share any walls with any other structure. These properties due to their isolation are usually very private. The semi-detached ones are joined together by a common wall in the middle. One side of each house shares a common wall while the other side is detached.

Bungalows are generally small in size: when it comes to square meters. Having said this, these days you can find very large bungalows — which combine both technology and splendid architecture, to cater to the more urban lifestyles most live today. One of the places where you can find such buildings in Lagos is Zylus Court Extension, which consists of beautifully crafted bungalows just for you.

See alos : Zylus Court

Apartment or Flat

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Apartments or flats are among the popular forms of housing in the Nigeria and world today.

 An apartment building is a combination of many separate homes stacked on top and next to each other, each apartment acts as its dwelling or living space.

As each apartment forms just a section of the overall building: it offers less privacy than alternative types of housing. By owning a flat, a person has access to common areas such as green space, playgrounds, rooftops, and gyms.

See also: Lekki Pride


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A terrace, or terrace house, is a single-family home that is usually set over two or three floors. A terrace house sits side-by-side with other terraces (joined together) — forming a tight row down a road or block or the inside of a gated estate.

Terraces usually have identical fronts and identical heights — thus are mirror images of each other. They are designed to accommodate as many people as possible in densely populated cities like Lagos. The last house in a row of terraces is known as the “end of terrace”. These are the line of houses, which are identical and are placed directly onto each other built with shared walls between them. They usually have uniform fronts and uniform heights, mostly found in estates, communities, or some housing units.

A terrace is also an open, outdoor space of your apartment that sits on a building’s setback, therefore not extending over the facade of the building. That’s unlike a balcony, which is smaller and overhangs the building’s exterior wall.


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A semi-detached building is a single-family home that shares a single wall with the next house. This style differentiates it from terraced houses (with shared walls on both sides), and detached houses (with no shared walls). The best places to find the best kind of semi-detached buildings are Zylus Court and Lekki Pride Estate. They both offer a variety of options for you to choose from.


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Detached houses are associated with the rich and famous, and feature some pretty impressive architecture. Although not as large as mansions, they are often just as luxurious — depending of course on the taste of the owner and how they are finished/furnished. They have usually spread over two or more floors and feature their private gates: leading onto a private compound.


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A Maisonette is a self-contained flat within a larger building, with its staircase and entrance. Maisonettes cover more than one floor and are sometimes referred to as duplexes. You can often find Maisonettes in large-period houses that have been converted (typically a first-floor Maisonette), or in a city center above the shops. Maisonettes are usually the go-to kind of building for bachelors in major cities.

Depending on the country or market, a Maisonette can have different definitions. For example, in Scotland a Maisonette is one of a group of duplex flats, positioned on top of each other as part of a housing block, accessed via a communal entrance. Whereas in the United States, living in a Maisonette means you occupy the top floor of a high-rise building, also known as a penthouse.

See also: Renting vs owing


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In the Nigerian context, a duplex can be thought of as a house where two different units (on two different floors) are stacked on one another like apartments. In essence, a duplex is like having two different houses in the same home.  Duplexes are not as widely available as apartments, with most of them located in suburbs rather than in urban areas.

As a rule of thumb: duplexes have at least two floors and you can find functioning apartments on each floor, thus this type of home is perfect for bigger families. Similar structures with three or four housing units or floors are called triplex or fourplex.


Apartments, also called apartment blocks, or blocks of flats, building containing more than one dwelling unit, most of which are designed for domestic use, but sometimes including shops and other nonresidential features.


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A penthouse apartment is a unit on the topmost floor of a multistorey apartment building or hotel. What differentiates a penthouse from other apartments is its luxury features or elements.

Penthouses are often the most expensive forms of housing in most markets. These types of houses are the largest, the most exclusive and offer the best views in a given apartment building. As such, penthouses are synonymous with a luxury lifestyle. You will often find them in Nigeria’s biggest cities such as Lagos, Abuja, and Port Harcourt.

What are the differences between the types of buildings?
Detached and Semi-detached 

A detached building is a stand-alone, one-family residence, while a semi-detached house is joined to another by a common wall that they share. Semi-detached properties are often mirrored images of each other.

 The title for the semi-detached property only includes your half of the building and the land it sits on. 

Bungalow vs Apartment/Flat

A bungalow is usually a small single-story house that is suitable for mobility, offers more privacy, and easy to maintain. An apartment or flat as they are often referred to in Nigeria is a housing unit that’s self-contained but is part of a larger building with several units.

Duplex vs Terrace

A duplex is a structure that contains two separate housing units, they’re often referred to as multi-family homes. When one mentions a duplex in Nigeria: it can be either detached, semi-detached, depending on how the duplex is designed/arranged.

A terraced building, on the other hand, is one of a row of similar houses joined together by their sidewalls. A terrace is also an open, outdoor space of your apartment that sits on a building’s setback, therefore not extending over the front of the building.

Maisonette vs Penthouse

People often conflate Maisonettes and Penthouses despite how they might be similar which stems from the fact they are perceived as luxurious forms of housing but they have some significant differences. A Penthouse is a flat on the top floor of a tall building, typically one that is luxuriously fitted while a set of rooms for living in, while a Maisonette typically on two storeys of a larger building and having a separate entrance. 

Do you want to buy or rent a home?

One place to find up-to-the-minute advice on the different types of building is www.zylusgroup.com.

Whatever decision you make, we at Zylus Group International through our team of sales experts will be happy to help you make the right decision for your future. 

We have the right home for you! Whether it’s a duplex, an apartment, a bungalow, a penthouse, whichever you choose, we will find a package that suits your lifestyle and budget.

We have helped many Nigerians both home and abroad become homeowners and we can help you do same.

  To learn more, contact our team of sales experts on 09033324444, 07034100972, 07034100958, or visit http://zylusgroup.com/contact .

Don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter at http://www.zylusgroup.com/subscribe to continue to get updates and tips on real estate and real estate investment.

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