Urbanis Africa invests US$66mn in Kenyan low-cost housing project

Kenya Africa house

Real estate development firm, Urbanis Africa, is investing US$66mn in low-cost housing in Kenya

The joint venture between a land owner in Kisaju, Kajiado County, and Urbanis Africa will see the construction of a US$66mn gated community of 800 homes built on a 115 acre piece of land.

“It will be an innovation in the real estate market in Kenya,” said Urbanis Africa CEO Wagane Diouf.

This will be the second major investment for the company, following the Kisaju View Park Estate, the company’s flagship venture.

The development options are three bedroom townhouses, four bedroom townhouses or a four bedroom townhouse with staff accommodation.

The houses will be completed within 18 months and will carry low prices, with Urbanis Africa handling the design and construction of the houses through its subsidiary, Urbanis Studio and Urban Construction.

According to the World Bank, the challenges facing the housing sector include lack of access to long-term funds and credit risk information, difficulties in registration of property and high interest rates.

“[The] cost of homes and housing finance is too high. The legal system is not strong enough to make both the lender and borrower confident. The mortgage option is beyond the incomes of the majority,” stated a World Bank report.

By 2040, Africa’s workforce will reach 1.1bn people and this will push demand for decent housing even higher.

“At the current rate of urbanization, an additional 14mn housing units per annum are needed to accommodate the urban demand,” said Diouf.

Mwangi Mumero

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