NAIROBI: Kenyans in the Diaspora plan to invest more than Sh6 billion in the country’s lucrative property market in the next one year. The diaspora community interest comes at a time when the local property market is grappling with a huge supply gap.

Currently, the market is estimated to have a deficit of more than 400,000 housing units both in the urban and rural areas.

During a recent home’s expo organised by Kingspride through its exhibition company, Kenya Diaspora Homes Expo Company (KDH) in New Jersey in US, Kenyans living abroad signed deals with local commercial banks and real estate firms targeting the residential and commercial segment. For example, Kenya Commercial Bank sealed retail and commercial mortgage deals worth about Sh5 billion during the exhibition.

The bank’s Head of Diaspora banking Vincent Aberi said the new deals are over and above an existing partnership with Kenya Diaspora Sacco where Sh10 billion loan has been advanced for onward lending to the credit union members to start their investments in Kenya.

Speaking on the expo, Kingspride and KDH Chairman David Karau disclosed that more than 24 local and international property companies and home investment professionals exhibited their products to the potential investors. He said Kenyans living in the US expressed interest in investing back home, especially in the property market and contribute in reducing the huge supply gap.

“Kenyans in the Diaspora have demonstrated a bigger appetite for investment within the country’s real estate market, but lack of proper procedures over the years has seen a number of them lose millions of shillings through fraudulent deals,” said Mr Karau.

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