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Approval red tape choking property industry

Before being allowed to put up a housing project, one is required to obtain numerous approvals, which more often than not, take longer than expected, leading to cost overruns. This, coupled with recent increase in approval charges in some counties, is giving developers sleepless nights. Read more...

 
Professionalism as a Worthy Investment

Cheap can be expensive. In the same way, cutting cost by avoiding the involvement of a real estate professional in your transaction may cost you a lot more in the long run. There are many reasons why to hire a professional including: Read more...

 
The characteristics on and around a plot of land

Every piece of land is different, and prices vary in different areas. Land values from nearby or adjoining parcels have a more constant relationship to one another. Read more....

 
Nairobi lacks good offices, says new industry report

With Nairobi being one of the most lucrative real estate destinations in the region, it is emerging that the industry is not capitalizing on its potential. A new report by Mentor Management Limited has revealed that few developers are meeting the demand for office space in the city. Read more...

With Nairobi being one of the most lucrative real estate destinations in the region, it is emerging that the industry is not capitalising on its potential. A new report by Mentor Management Limited has revealed that few developers are meeting the demand for office space in the city.
Read more at: http://www.standardmedia.co.ke/lifestyle/article/2000106171/nairobi-lacks-good-offices-says-new-industry-report?pageNo=1
 
Invest smart and make money

For the past several years, the country’s property market has been growing at a pace some experts fear is ‘alarming’. Demand for housing, both residential and commercial, has been at an all time high with land appreciating with over a 400 per cent in some areas. Given, underwhelming performance in the past years due to a poorly performing economy that had suppressed growth in this sector, growth at such a rate was expected once the conditions improved. Read more....

 
Is Nakuru building on shaky ground?

Developers in Nakuru and other large towns in the Rift Valley are asking the government to carry out geological and scientific surveys in the region to assure investors of the safety of buildings. This follows a resurgence of volcanic activity globally as well as “strange” occurrences such as unseasonal flooding of lakes in the Rift Valley and even a comet which lit the skies last weekend. Read more...

 
Kenya’s top architects feted

In a span of less than a 100 years, Kenya has transformed magnificently in terms of architectural development. From a period when the two storey Kipande house, then a rail warehouse, was the tallest building to a time that the Times Tower overlooks the city from over 30 floors in height. Read more.....

 
Campuses put pressure on land

In the past 10 years, institutions of higher learning have seen unprecedented growth. Almost every major university has campuses in most counties, with many polytechnics getting upgrades and charters to operate independently. Read more...

 
State subsidies needed in real estate

When the Hass Property Index report for the fourth quarter of last year came out last month, the findings weren’t unexpected. During the last three months of 2013, the report said, the real estate market had become relatively sluggish; there were fewer new developments; prices had slightly gone up; and mortgage rates remained high. For an aspiring first-time homeowner, there was hardly any encouraging thing in the report. Read more....

 
Why are home sellers not professional?

I was disappointed by the way staff working for a housing developer were going about selling to me a house to me. Never mind this was my first home purchase but if this is the way things are done, I may not be going that route again. These developers, who have decided it’s cost effective to sell the houses by themselves, are doing the job less than professionally expected. Read more...

 
Are our cities waiting to burn?

On January 25, 2014, a fire broke out at Kariobangi North estate in Nairobi, destroying 10 houses and occasioning loss of property and household goods worth millions of shillings. Not a single fire engine responded to the disaster. Desperate efforts by residents to get the fire brigade were unsuccessful. An angry Nairobi Senator, Michael Mbuvi ‘Sonko’, stormed the Nairobi Fire Station on Tom Mboya street, with the media in tow, and demanded an explanation. Read more...

 
Manual land records a nightmare

Property transactions turn into nightmares when official documents disappear at the Ministry of Lands. Such transactions hit dead ends as land registrars insist that the ‘lost’ original documents in their custody must be traced before the transaction is completed. In many instances, property lawyers get positive results after conducting official searches at land registries but cannot transfer the property over alleged missing green cards.Read more...

 
What is the real estate construction financier looking for?

So I get this email from a lady from a local bank asking to collaborate with us on projects. She rightly points out that because most projects are killed by lack of financing, we should work together seeing that I am deeply involved in this sector. She goes on to give me snap shot of their success projects done in town, which are quite impressive and are the talk of town. Wait a minute, are banks now hawking construction financing deals? Read more...

 
Modern door security options

Experiencing a burglary at your home can be a traumatizing and fearful experience. Yet many homeowners overlook the need for a careful scrutiny of their door access and safety. With so many access solutions and products available in the market, it is important to take your time when exploring what will give you value for your money. From door locks to padlocks, the solutions are mechanical, electro-mechanical or the intelligent digital locks. Read more....

 
Building for the physically challenged

Take a minute to look around your house, or at your building plans. What if today, God forbid, you were to lose your physical ability to move freely? Either you lose your sight, arms or legs. Or you were to live in that house in your old age. Would the design of your house be friendly to your physical challenge? My bet is that the answer for many would be no. Read more...

 
Is your commercial project feasible?

Let’s say you are among the lucky few who managed to secure the ownership of a five-acre piece of land in a pretty prime area, right at the heart of the city. This parcel is so attractive everyone is just pressurising you to develop it and get rid the parking attendants who seam to be underutilising the land. It makes sense to develop it quickly before it’s grabbed by some unscrupulous people. Read more....

 
New cement levy could slow down housing sector

Recent increase in cement prices after the introduction of a new levy on finished cement products is likely to slow down the growth of the housing sector, players say. Through a special gazette notice, Mining Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala directed that cement manufacturers pay Sh140 to the government for every tonne of cement produced or Sh7 per 50 kilogramme-bag of cement beginning this year. Manufacturers have opposed the new rates that effectively increase the cost of cement production. Read more...

 
12th property expo attracts big-name sponsors

Leading paint manufacturing company Basco Paints has thrown its weight behind the 12th Property and Home Living Expo to be held on February 20th at the Sarit Centre. The local firm, aboard as a key sponsor has announced it will showcase its innovative Duracoat Homes Solutions facility and its vast array of specialized services, targeting the 10,000 high net worth audience at the exhibition. Read more....

 
Islamic home loans are a good financing alternative

There has been an increase in Islamic housing finance products across Islamic compliant banks, a move that has prompted conventional banks to offer such products. What is behind this trend? We are witnessing increased appreciation of Islamic banking, which is based on sharing of profits and losses.Read more....

 
Tips on importing materials from China

The trending construction method is that the client is increasingly purchasing building materials for the contractor to fix. The materials in question are however limited to finishes like tiles, sanitary fittings like toilets and bath tubs, joinery works like wardrobes and kitchens and may be aluminium-glazed windows. Read more....

 
Before you build, count the cost

Different parts of the country are dotted with incomplete houses whose construction has stalled at the foundation or lintel for years, leading to an increase in construction costs. The problem, writes PAUL KARIUKI, is that many would-be homebuilders don’t take time to come up with realistic budgets Many of us dream of owning a home one day, and never having to deal with a landlord or his agent again. Read more...

 

 
Developers Self Help Club!

Real estate development is intense and massive. It is certainly not for the faint hearted! It calls for a go­ getter with a drive almost unfathomable which enables a construction project to be realized. Right from conceiving the idea to finance mobilization, to design, to approvals, to implementation and finally to disposal, all these stages require attention. I see a lot of people give up right in the middle or never starting at all. Read more....

 
Professional architects decry influx of quacks

Professionals Architects have noted with concern the influx of unqualified contractors in the building industry. Vice President of the Africa Union of Architects (AUA), Jerry Ndong’ said that this will continue to influence negatively the growth of real­estate sector. “Unfortunately, brief case contractors are more likely to win government tenders as they tend to under­quote,” Ndong’ said. Read more.....

 
It’s time to go property

For over 10 years now, the country’s real estate sector has maintained a steady growth. Even the chaos witnessed in the 2007 elections could only slow down the market for a short period. The property market has risen to become the most profitable and lucrative investment docket. The value of land in some areas appreciated by over 1000 per cent in the ten years. Read more....

 
Cheaper loans to fund low cost housing in the New Year

The organisation has set aside Sh430 million ($5million) to advance to the institutions operating at the low­end market in the country. The loans will be advanced at rates lower than the prevailing market rates. Shelter Afrique Managing Director Allasane Ba said extension of credit to fund the development of low­cost housing conforms to his organisation’s spirit of improving the lives of people living at the bottom of the pyramid. Read more....

 
Sharp demand pushes rental prices to the roof

Rent for residential properties rose by 23 per cent in the country over the last year reflecting sharp demand from the middle class whose prospect of accessing mortgages has been hampered by high interest rates. Read more....

 
It was a bad year for not-so-glittery offices

Whereas demand has generally been high for commercial buildings in 2013, office blocks in some locations in Nairobi have remained empty, The uptake of commercial space in some market segments remained low in 2013 despite high demand. Many commercial buildings around Nairobi are lying empty as businessmen avoid due to poor location and inappropriate designs. The market requires about one million square feet of commercial space annually, but the government and the private sector only supplies 500,000 square feet. Reginald Okumu, a property consultant, says commercial buildings coming up in some areas are poorly designed. Read more.....

 
Simple things that make your house durable

A few months ago, I visited the first house built by Lord Delamere in Soysambu conservancy, and my curiosity was aroused by the fact that 40 years since the house was built, the entire finishing was still intact. . . .Read More

 
Capital Gains Tax causes jitters

Property developers are uneasy about proposals by the Government to impose a blanket rule by re-introducing Capital Gains Tax because it will hurt the less wealthy investors. It is feared the looming introduction of the tax may kill the goose that lays the golden egg. . .Read More

 
Rents stagnate as landlords feel taxman’s heat

Landlords are finding it difficult to pass on tax liabilities to tenants of middle-income apartments leading to a stagnation of rents in this segment of the market over the past three months, analysts at Hass Consult have said.. .Read More

 
High mortgages deter home ownership in Kenya

High mortgage rates from the local banks stand as the biggest challenge for the growth of the real estate sector in the country, according to latest Hass Consult Index....Read More

 
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