We all have lofty dreams of decked out homes with sprawling lawns and dreamy balconies… Dreams feed our vision, give us purpose to exert ourselves in the hope of achieving them. I love that the universe always has a way of showing us that all our dreams are valid.
It’s the actualization for me.
But, as we all know, the actual home and dream are sold separately and so we need to start somewhere…
Property acquisition is an enigma to most if not all of us, but it doesn’t have to be. In Kenya, property remains a most prized possession so much so that some have paid with their life for it! To put it into perspective, since independence our land has remained the same, but population has increased. Land is a limited resource.
We’re all scrambling for the same limited resource. That is not meant to scare you but to open you to scout for opportunities that you can take advantage of. Armed with the right information, you’ll be good to go!
Here are some practical tips towards owning your home.
1. Match your dream with your reality
Some of us fail to move in life because we do not want to use what we have. You want to wait till you have 20 million altogether so that you get the home. You’ll get there, but start with what you have….Interrogate how much you can comfortably pay as installment plan or service facility without jeopardizing your day to day needs. Then start. Starting small is no inhibition to actualizing big.
2. Location, location, location
In property, location is everything. Look at the environment and the infrastructure current and if possible future government blueprint. It’ll give you foresight. Better infrastructure means better value for your property.
3. Developer background check
What other developments have the developer successfully completed? Are they well done? What is their financing plan for the project?
4. Hidden charges costs
What other costs are lumped up to the costs of the house? Usually they are allowable costs but it’s good to know exactly what they are. Look out for legal fees & stamp duty tax as well as service charge deposit.
5. Quantity is not necessarily quality
Focus on owning good property not just any property. You could have one good thing and it sorts you out with future bank securities etc. than several small properties that are hard to verify and /or may take considerable time to give you value, if any.
6. Off-plan units?
This is your friend but can also be your foe. Consider a show house. Consider financing of the project. Consider track record. Consider if its Government backed housing. If the boxes check, proceed. Off plan allows you to pay over extended periods of time and at a rate lower than complete units.
7. Buying vs Building
Both work. Look at the pros and cons. If you are on a budget and are very particular on design, build. If you are not too price sensitive and not overly particular on layout and design the market has several great offerings if you do your research well.
Loans are levers and give you leverage. They can also be your direct ticket to financial misery. The rule is to always bite what you can chew. It can help you take advantage of what you deem is your dream property.
9. The next best time to invest in Real estate is today.
*This is article is the first of a 3 part series. In the next installation Angela will highlight the affordable housing programme by the Government of Kenya and will conclude by telling you how to go about constructing a dream home.
Angela is a Sales and Marketing Executive at Added Value Group, a Real Estate & Property Development company in Kenya.
If you’re interested to learn more please talk to her on +254 725 856 738. Also, reference Nasujo.com and watch Angela go above and beyond as she always does 😅