Buying Abroad: Kenya
Written by Michael Loose
Kenya – the pride of Africa. No other country on earth offers this diversity within its borders. Kenya is Africa for beginners with endless savannahs, timeless cultures unchanged by the modern world, pristine beaches and coral reef, equatorial forests and mighty snow-capped mountains, searing deserts, cool highland retreats but also a vibrant modern Capital.
Originally the local Maasai tribe had called the land “Ewaso Nai’beri” meaning a place of cool waters – and that is what is used to be: a swamp with no human settlement. It is not surprising therefore, that it was only in the 20th century, that Nairobi started out as camp for the construction workers of the East African Railway, built by the necessity to give shelter to workers, provide a place for trade and services – halfway to the “heart of Africa” – in order to exploit its riches.
Today, Kenya’s capital has not only grown into one of Africa’s largest cities but has also become one of the most important economic hubs for East and Central Africa. The city has today the highest annual growth rates in Africa with also an increasing population from America, Europe and Asia. Nairobi is in full transformation with extreme contrasts and a great variety – an exciting amalgamation of cosmopolitan flair and diversified culture of the city and its people.
Due to the important housing deficit, property prices have appreciated constantly during the past 10 – 15 years. According to the Hass Consult Index Property values have increased by more the 4 times since 2000. Buying a home in Kenya is therefore not only making a dream come true, but also an extremely attractive capital investment.
NEW SATELITE CITIES
With the explosive growth, completely new towns are being developed around the Capital. One of the being Tatu City, a mixed-use development on 5,000 acres with homes, schools, offices, a shopping district, medical clinics, nature areas, a sport & entertainment complex and manufacturing area for more than 150,000 residents and tens of thousands of day visitors. These new urban satellite towns represent a new way of living and thinking for all Kenyans, creating a unique live, work and play environment that is free from traffic congestion and long-distance commuting.
Only a short drive out of Nairobi’s CBD, but still within the city’s boundaries you will already find the first of the 54 Kenya National Parks and Reserves: The amazing Nairobi National Park, wide open grass plains, a backdrop of the city scrapers and scattered acacia bush play host to a wide variety of African wildlife. The best-known reserve in Kenya if not the whole of Africa, and host to one of the wonders of the world (the Wilberbeast migration), is of course the Maasai Mara in the Rift Valley. This National Reserve is a land of breathtaking vistas, untouched wilderness and endless plains and globally renowned for its exceptional abundant wildlife.
For years, Nairobi has been the cradle of technological innovation. Dubbed as the ‘Silicon Savannah’ and Africa’s Silicon Valley, Nairobi has become the technology epicenter of innovation. It is the home of the world famous and 1st of its kind mobile money transfer service called MPESA that has transformed the way people access their money, credit and do financial transactions. It attracts more and more international innovative start up’s. With the iHub, launched in 2010 as an open space for startups as well as Kenya’s capital, Nairobi is today recognized as one of the global technological innovation spheres.
Spending time watching the ocean can be very therapeutic as life is at ease with the ocean breeze. Kenyan’s coastal region is dawned by amazing natural beauty, ranging from snorkeling out to the reef to rain forests and mangroves and rich history dating back to pre-colonial days. Its picturesque beaches are among the best in Africa and the world.
Kenya’s amazing offer is endless – and many foreign expats arriving to Kenya every year share Karen Blixen’s emotions in the film “Out of Africa” when she had her farm at the foot of the famous Ngong Hills: “Here I am, where I ought to be”.
This is why when buying real estate in Kenya you are not acquiring a property but a lifestyle. And you are taking part in Sub-Saharan huge Economic potential. Whether you are looking for a new life for your family, a quiet and beautiful place to retire, new challenges for your career or business opportunities, Kenya has all of that and much more!
If our description of life in Africa and particularly in Kenya has peeked your curiosity, visit coldwellbanker.co.ke to see some of the seriously breathtaking villas in the coastal area, ambassadorial houses or top-class modern apartments we have listed for sale.
MICHAEL LOOSE (MRICS) COLDWELL BANKER KENYA
Michael Loose (MRICS) has joined Coldwell Banker Kenya as Managing Partner of Coldwell Banker Commercial and Residential. This follows the recent exit by former Managing Director Ms. Danielle Callaway to pursue personal endeavors.
Prior to joining Coldwell Banker Kenya, he worked as a Portfolio Manager for the Swiss Railway Real Estate where he managed the Commercial Station Portfolio. Prior to this he was working at UBS Real Estate in the institutional pan-European real estate business where he was heading Construction and Development department. Michael has a broad and solid real estate background with almost 20 years of experience in the industry. His primary specialty and focus is on portfolio management, asset management, corporate real estate and real estate developments including re-vitalization and re-positioning project. Michael speaks German, English, French and Spanish. One of his significant assignments is that he was responsible for project developments with a volume exceeding EUR 2.5 billion and he has managed a real estate portfolio with a NOI of EUR 300 million.