The real estate market in Kenya has seen an improvement of growth especially in its capital of Nairobi and other major areas. It has also enjoyed exponential growth of new investors in the real estate sector. This has influenced different sectors of the property industry such as the commercial office sector, retail sector, land sector, infrastructure sector and the residential sector.
According to professional research analysis, the real estate market has made a continuous improvement with more buyers purchasing real estate property in 2019-2020.
An increase in demand has boosted the uptake of the property market leading to increased uptake of office space and prime residential asking price. The increase in prime residential prices is accredited to rising interest among buyers and infrastructural improvement which is approved by the occupiers.
The property market has changed tremendously over the last two decades and Nairobi’s skyline has been completely transformed by new developments.
Technological advancement has introduced new possibilities for attracting new investors or buyers and economic diversification. Office rents have seen an increase, especially in high-end areas, like in Westlands and Upper Hill where they have increased over the two decades. The sector however value zones with high returns and low supply such as Gigiri, which records relatively high yields in differentiated concepts such as serviced offices.
The outlook on the residential sector remains promising. The residential market would experience rising demand for high-end volumes. The high standard of living of the Kenyan middle class is driving demand upwards. A need for high-end buildings is important to comply with the requirement of quality standards.
Investment opportunities are in low to mid-end markets such as Thindigua, Ruaka and Athi River for potential buyers, and upper mid-end markets such as Parklands for rental property.
There is a growing demand for development land especially for high-end housing in the satellite towns with improved infrastructure and enhanced access ways. Land values have increased significantly in satellite towns such as Karen, Muthaiga, Kitisuru, Gigiri, Runda and Kyuna. Other investment opportunities within the Nairobi area land sector within the satellite towns include suburbs such as Kilimani, Kileleshwa and Westlands.
Such areas are supported by the relatively high annual capital appreciation (of above 10%).
The infrastructure sector is positively influenced by the commitment of transforming the country to middle-income status by 2030 through infrastructural upgrades such as water improvement programs, power projects and road development projects.
This will be a positive outlook for real estate development.
In 2020 key factors expected to shape the real estate sector include an improved mortgage market, government sponsorship, devolution and the affordable housing initiative. Positive performances will be supported on location and accessibility, availability of affordable land for development and availability of key amenities.