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Real estate booms in Thika

Posted In Business, Real Estate - By admin on Thursday, July 4th, 2013 With No Comments »
ThikaGreens

A House that is already complete and occupied at the Thika Greens Golf city that is under construction and is expected to be fully functional by end of this year.

Everyday hundreds of people travel to Nairobi from Thika to earn their daily bread.

The construction of the Thika superhighway and proximity to Nairobi has made the industrial town in Kiambu County an attractive investment destination. Many are willing to invest in this town, located North East of Nairobi, and slowly it is becoming one of the most popular developers destination who are willing to put up multi-million-shilling investment projects.

Ben Woodhams, Knight Frank MD , says investors are heading north as Nairobi rapidly expands. Although some are moving west to places like Kangemi, north is no doubt the best attraction due to the ample land available.

Developers

The old coffee farms, most developers admit, are the jewel that has lured them to this County in the outskirts on the city.

“Thika has the old coffee farms that provide a serene environment, which is hard to come by within the city,” said the developer of Windsor Homes Ltd., David Karau. Windsor homes is planning to set up 10,000 units next to Castle Breweries, in Thika, dubbed Castle Park. The company has secured 100 acres of land under an agreement with the land owner.

“Thika hosts a better environment,” added Mr Karau.

The ease of securing relevant land transfer and ownership documents is another reason that has made it eased the process of investors settling on Thika. Unlike the city and its environs where land disputes and irregular land deals are the order of the day, Thika is somewhat free of land ownership tussles.

In Nairobi, real estate investors are often required to do due diligence to avoid falling prey to shoddy land and property deals. Many developers and investors in Thika purchase land directly from the owners making the transfer process much easier and indisputable.

For those unwilling to sell land, agreements with developers that guarantee them a stake in the business is an option many have exploited.

The geographical location of Thika is also a factor that has attracted investors. Aside from the space provided by the charm of coffee farms, the flowing waters of river Chania and the captivating view of Fourteen Falls offer a scenic attraction.

Controlled

The gated community and golf development Thika Greens has helped position the town as a major real estate investment destination. The highly publicised controlled project occupies 1,706 acres of land. The projects feature amenities like schools, shopping malls, a health facility, and restaurant among others.

Construction, which began last year, isivided in three phases.

Buffalo Hills Golf and Leisure Vllage and Bahati Ridge are other high-end developments in Thika.

Buffalo Hills, which sits on 355 acres, is a controlled development that features an 18-hole golf course. Bahati Ridge is a gated community with a touch of lifestyle with a touch of both modern living and restful rural ambience.

Infrastructure such as the Thika superhighway has also helped raise the towns profile.

Although a good thing, the traffic from investors and land buyers in Thika is having a negative effect on the value of land as the cost of land is quickly rising.

“The cost of land in Thika is slightly better, but the value of land is increasing by the day. But of course there is no comparison to Nairobi,” Mr Karau said.

Nairobi still ranks top as the real estate investment destination with the best returns and will continue to spark interest among local and international buyers.

South African firm Sanlam through its investment arm Sanlam Africa Core Real Estate Fund, Actis and Indian Tycoon’s Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries and Delta Corp East Africa Limited are among foreign companies placing their bet on Nairobi real estate market.

This year, Mr Ambani was reported to have purchased 10 prime plots in Nairobi worth Sh2.9 billion. He also successfully gained from Delta Towers sold to PwC and University of Nairobi, on Waiyaki way Westlands.

The company also sold Delta Centre in Upper Hill to the World Bank. Sanlam is planning to invest Sh5.5 billion.

But even so, Thika will always have space for those indeed of large space for stand-alone houses and are keen to smell fresh air next to Mother Nature.

-Business Daily

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