Nairobi property prices up sharply

02 Nov 2010

Kenya’s first multi-billion dollar property development on the outskirts of Nairobi is allowing a Russian developer to cash in on the booming real estate market in east Africa.

The Renaissance Group has formed a joint venture with Kenya’s Tatu City to develop a thousand hectares of land on a former coffee farm outside the town of Thika, 40 kilometres north of Nairobi.

The mixed-use development will eventually house more than 60 000 people and will offer commercial and recreation facilities, a football stadium and a range of freestanding houses and sectional title apartment blocks.

So far $100-million has been invested in the first phase of the project and another $250-million has been raised for the second phase claims Renaissance Group chief executive, Stephen Jennings.

He says that growing incomes, particularly among the young people who are moving to the cities, is pushing up demand for housing across all asset classes.

Figures show that the construction industry was the fastest growing sector in Kenya’s economy during the second quarter of this year.

Kenya has a population of 38,6-million people and its economy is projected to grow by 5% this year and 6% next year. Residential property prices in Nairobi have risen by 8% year-on-year according to figures compiled by the Hass Property Index.

Jennings says that Kenya’s political risk factors are falling while the economic climate is improving. “This project will act as a catalyst for further foreign direct investment in the country,” he says.

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