A landlord at Mirema in Zimmerman, Nairobi, has been forced to waive rent for the month of July for his new seemingly high-end apartments to attract new tenants as Covid-19 continues to sweep across the country.
The landlord who has both one and two-bedrooms seems to have reached that decision after it became clear that Kenyans are really struggling to pay rent due to the effects of the pandemic.
A survey done by Infotrak showed that 63 percent of Kenyans cannot pay their rent as Covid-19 weighs heavily on their finances. 60 percent of Kenyans say they are not able to pay rent in full and on time.
The survey also showed that 43 percent of Kenyans view the Covid-19 pandemic as a financial problem as compared to it being a health problem.
The number of confirmed cases has moved past 5000 with the Ministry of Health saying the cases are set to rise drastically as more tests are carried out.
Few landlords in Nairobi opted to reduce the rent in an effort to cushion their tenants and to keep them from moving to cheaper ones. The majority of landlords, however, have remained adamant about rent and some have ended up evicting tenants who delay or fail to pay rent.
According to experts from Cytonn Investments, the current pandemic is expected to shape the future of the real estate sector post-COVID-19 given its implications on economies and health which have been dire, leading to an abrupt change in people’s way of life.
This is expected to continue over a sustained period thus influencing occupiers and end-users of real estate in unprecedented and unique ways, which are expected to have implications for the real estate sector.
As the pandemic continues to bite, it is expected that more and more Kenyans will be unable to pay rent. What will happen to landlords? Are houses going to remain unoccupied? Is the real estate sector going to be the most hit?