Rents for Two- Bedroom Flats Grow by 26 Percent
Latest data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) has revealed an increase in rent charges for single rooms units over the last five years, a development that has seen low-income earners suffer the most. The official data, however, showed a slow rise in rents for two-bedroom bungalows over the same period.
According to the reports, rents for one room units rose by 30 percent to an average of Sh4,416 per month while that of two-bedroom bungalows increased to an average of Sh29,829 per month, an equivalence of 16% growth.
This means landlords who own single room units pocketed increased returns compared to their counterparts who own two-bedroom bungalows. On the other side, tenants of the two-bedroom units have been less hit by the changes, unlike the low-income earners.
The report tracking rent changes over the five-year period to October 2018, indicates that three-bedroom maisonettes recorded a rise of 18 percent to Sh36,241 while rent charges for two-bedroom flats grew by 26 percent to an average of Sh21,344.
The KNBS report, that does not track rent changes for one-bedroom houses, revealed that the single rooms investment returns were highest in major urban towns. The high returns, according to the report, were as a result of increased urban migration where a majority of the people opt for single room houses due to lack of jobs, or poorly paying ones.
After the owners of single- room units, investment in two-bedroom flats and three-bedroom maisonettes followed in returns, while returns in bungalows were lower amidst the oversupply of high-end housing segment.
The poor, who are the majority, opt for single room units which fit their strained budgets, on the other hand, the middle class opts for two-bedroom flats which are located along routes to commercial districts.
However, the rich prefer maisonettes as they are often located away from town centers, saving them from the noisy environment.
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