spot_img
Wednesday, April 17, 2024
spot_img
spot_img

Revealed: Where Diaspora Kenyans Buy Holiday Homes

Revealed: Where Diaspora Kenyans Buy Holiday Homes
Revealed: Where Diaspora Kenyans Buy Holiday Homes

Carey Njeri was on holiday in Kenya while surveying potential investment opportunities in Malindi when she saw a billboard of a property that interested her.

Ms Njeri who lives and works in Los Angeles, US says she had been looking for a property away from city life.

- Advertisement -

“I stopped by, it was 6pm,” says the 50-year-old.

That was one and a half years ago and today the social services administrator is a proud owner of a two-bedroom villa in a gated community in Vipingo, Kilifi County.

“The advertised cost was Sh12.98 million but the true cost is always 10 percent more because of legal fees, stamp duty, and other miscellaneous costs. It costs more but the peace of mind is worth the extra cost,” says Ms Njeri who opted to buy the house in cash.

“I have stayed there once; I’d love to stay longer,” she adds.

- Advertisement -

Ms Njeri is among a growing number of Kenyans in the diaspora who are investing back home.

About four million Kenyans live and work abroad. But while 61 percent of the diaspora population would like to invest in Kenya, with 46 percent of them interested in property and real estate, a host of issues stand in their way.

According to the Commonwealth Diaspora Investor Survey, 2018, a lack of awareness of potential investment opportunities is a major detriment.

Other issues raised were corruption, political instability, red tape, lack of investment partners, unsecure financial systems and weak legal frameworks.

Ms Njeri is among a growing number of Kenyans in the diaspora who are investing back home.

About four million Kenyans live and work abroad. But while 61 percent of the diaspora population would like to invest in Kenya, with 46 percent of them interested in property and real estate, a host of issues stand in their way.

According to the Commonwealth Diaspora Investor Survey, 2018, a lack of awareness of potential investment opportunities is a major detriment.

Other issues raised were corruption, political instability, red tape, lack of investment partners, unsecure financial systems and weak legal frameworks.

Debbie, who is an assistant vice president, and projects manager with the second largest financial institution in the US, bought a two-bedroom villa for Sh14.48 million a year ago. She paid 50 percent in cash with the remainder being financed through a bank.

According to a 2021 poll conducted by the Norwegian-based accelerator company Pangea Trust, the real estate and construction sectors received the majority of private diaspora investments, with 29 percent, or roughly one out of every three diaspora individuals surveyed, having put money in the sector.

Ms Debbie gives a variety of reasons for why she thinks her holiday home is a worthwhile investment.

“I was attracted to the beautiful homes built with coastal vibes. I cannot wait to entertain my family and friends and to relax and enjoy the serene environs knowing that I get to put the key into the door to my own house on arrival in Kenya.

Then, the property ordinances are more like what we are accustomed to [in the US], so we are not worried about encountering unsupervised pets roaming the streets, uninvited guests, door-to-door solicitors or our next-door neighbour constructing high-rise rental apartments in their backyard.

The community is also diverse with residents from all over the world which is great as we shall have an extension of a global experience to interact with right here in Kenya,” she says.

While she is overseas, Superior Homes, which built and sold the holiday home to Ms Debbie manages the property as an Airbnb on her behalf sharing the revenue on a 70-30 basis with the bigger share going to her.

Changing work landscape

“The global working landscape is changing rapidly post-COVID-19 pandemic with many jobs now being done remotely. There has been an upsurge in nomadic workers looking to work outside of developed countries and this opportunity is perfect as we can opt to work occasionally in a much more relaxed and slower-paced environment.

The easy access to both local and international airports played a big role in my decision. Also, the Mombasa-Malindi highway is under construction which will reduce the distance drastically between both places expanding our scenic touring adventures,” Ms Debbie adds.

Advice to the diaspora looking to buy homes in Kenya?

“Do your due diligence for everything. I engaged a legal firm to act on our behalf. I was engaged in all correspondence between the developers and my attorney. I had side meetings with my attorney to make sure that the lease and sale agreements served me and to address legal lingo and intricacies. Other steps include review and modification of the plan with architects, oversight of the construction work, and we relied on photos, videos,” says Ms Njeri.

“Most importantly, know your WHY – do what is best for you. Investing in a home away from home takes grit, trust. The holiday home has added to my investment portfolio and risk management,” says Ms Njeri, who is also interested in REITs and land investments.

“This is an asset to hand over to my children and an investment that is constantly increasing in value. In under a year the value of my house compared to the purchase price has already accrued Sh1.5 million in gains and is projected to continue to increase,” says Debbie.

Mr Simba says many of their buyers have no one they can trust to handle their affairs or prefer privacy about their investments from family or friends. Getting scammed is a major worry of diaspora buyers. Another challenge is that Kenya’s real estate industry is not well organised for those who live in developed markets so they get lost trying to understand it.

“We have a buy-to-build order, not off-plan, and people pay on milestones after the initial deposit,” says Clive Ndege, head of sales at Superior Homes.

By PHYLLIS NYAMBURA

Source-https://www.businessdailyafrica.com/

 

Revealed: Where Diaspora Kenyans Buy Holiday Homes

Related Articles

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisement -spot_img
- Advertisement -spot_img
- Advertisement -spot_img
- Advertisement -spot_img
- Advertisement -spot_img
- Advertisement -spot_img

Latest Articles