Indian firm to build Sh12bn homes at Garden City in Nairobi

Shapoorji Pallonji Real Estate, the property development arm of Indian Shapoorji Pallonji Group, has entered the Kenyan market with plans to build a multi-billion shilling estate in Nairobi. The Mi Vida Homes project at Nairobi’s Garden City Mall on Thika Road will be developed through a Sh12 billion fund established by Shapoorji Pallonji and its joint venture partner Actis. The joint partners will develop some 624 apartments, which will be sold to prospective buyers for Sh6 million (one bedroom) and Sh9 million for a two-bedroom unit. A three-bedroom unit will be sold for Sh14 million. The Mi Vida Homes project’s chief executive Chris Colson says the partners will next month open an experiential facility on-site to showcase the proposed homes to prospective buyers. “This August will see us open customer sales and an experiential facility where showroom houses will be built. We want to avoid a scenario where buyers hardly know what they are buying,” Mr. Colson said on Wednesday. Mi Vida (Spanish for ‘my life’) will be built in three phases. The first phase includes the construction of two blocks rising 13 floors with a total of 208 one-, two- and three-bedroom units. The segment will be completed in 26 months…

1.5 percent housing levy pay cut for workers to start March

Formally employed workers could start paying a 1.5 percent salary deduction beginning March 1 to finance construction of cheap houses by the State. Transport, Housing and Infrastructure Cabinet Secretary James Macharia Tuesday said the government has reached an agreement with the workers’ union, which will pave the way for an end to court injunctions that had stopped the deduction. “We had injunctions that halted the process, but the parties have agreed to withdraw them so we are ready to proceed with the project,” said Mr Macharia in Nyeri during an inspection of ongoing public projects in the county. Employment and Labour Relations Court Judge Hellen Wasilwa had granted the order to halt the deductions following an urgent application by the workers’ umbrella body, the Central Organisation of Trade Unions (Cotu) in December. Cotu secretary-general Francis Atwoli had faulted the tax, saying there was no public consultation before its implementation. The levy is to be deducted from each employee’s basic salary and remitted to the National Housing Development Fund (NHDF). Violating orders Cotu has, however, not made public its position on the matter. An application filed by the Ministry of Housing asking the court to lift the injunction against the deduction…

Court Clears Way for President Kenyatta to Put Up 7,000 Housing Units in Nairobi’s Shauri Moyo Estate

The government can continue with plans of putting up more than 7,000 housing units in Nairobi’s Shauri Moyo estate, the High Court has ruled. The ruling comes after 300 civil servants moved to court seeking to have the plan stopped until the government provides them with alternative accommodation. The government wants to demolish the existing old structures in the estate, where the civil servants are living, and put up modern houses under President Kenyatta’s affordable housing pillar. In her ruling, Justice Wilfrida Okwany says that the relationship between the government and the civil servants is that of a landlord-tenant and the former has the right to do whatever he wants with his property as long as the tenant is given adequate notice to vacate. The judge further notes that the applicants failed to prove that they cannot secure alternative accommodation and dismissed their argument that there are school going and disabled children in the houses. Under the low-cost housing plan, President Uhuru’s administration plans to construct more than 500,000 units for sale to Kenyans in the next four years. Source | Mwakilishi

State seeks to help Kenyans buy its half million low cost houses

If you earn less than Sh100, 000 and can spare a third of your income, owning a home will be within your reach under a Government plan to spur a housing boom. The State has created a company to offer cheap loans to banks to target civil servants, self-employed persons, or salaried employees with mortgage of up to 30 years to reduce the pressure on repayment. The Kenya Mortgage Refinancing Company (KMRC) will receive a Sh16.1 billion ($160 million) from the World Bank to start operations this month and will be owned by the Government and the private sector. “KMRC will contribute to the broad objective of the Government of Kenya to deliver 500,000 affordable homes by 2022 targeting households with incomes of up to Sh100,000 per month,” the National Treasury said in a document pitched to bank bosses and sacco CEOs. Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich yesterday told financial institution bosses in Nairobi that the Government aimed to own about 20 per cent of the firm and would pump in Sh1.5 billion fully paid share capital. The rest of the Sh5 billion authorised share capital will come from development partners, banks, and saccos interested in owning part of the…