Ben Woodhams
Limuru Road
National Construction Authority
Spring Valley
Steven Oundo

Karen is most affordable suburb and lucrative

With an average price per acre of land in Karen going for Sh52 million against a market average of Sh87 million for an acre, it offers prospective land buyers the best bet for an address in some of Kenya’s high end estates, says Cytonn Investments’ latest report released this week.

Karen, according to the new study, recorded the highest increase in price or value of asset at 12.2 per cent since 2011 in low rise residential suburbs, against a market average of 4.5 per cent.

Even then, Cytonn shows that the Karen suburb, attracts the fairest asking prices for land now despite prices have risen over the years with an acre in going for Sh52 million up from Sh25 million in 2011.

Land in Nairobi’s reclusive Spring Valley is the most expensive followed by Nyari, an estate located along Limuru Road and which borders Muthaiga and Runda.

Given the high land prices in these estates with the exception of Karen, the report says that for these regions to experience significant increase in prices, the zoning regulations need to be relaxed to ‘‘allow for more space for people to live and thus more value can be derived from the land.”

Steven Oundo, the chairman of the National Construction Authority notes that when there is development, the demand for social services increases and this is followed by development of schools and hospitals among other amenities, which Karen is managing.

In the upmarket area, the luxury housing segment is expected to see growth as more ultra-wealthy Kenyans and foreigners buy homes and office spaces.

However, Knight Frank has noted in its latest wealth report that the market for townhouses in Karen has become somewhat saturated, with a subsequent plateauing of both house prices and land values.

‘‘Typically, houses currently sell for around Sh80 million to Sh110 million, although we are now seeing record prices being achieved for larger stand-alone houses with more substantial gardens,’’ said Ben Woodhams of Knight Frank.

Wealthy Kenyan buyers are now more interested in investing in offices and shopping malls and there are a number of them coming up in Karen and its environs.

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