Absa Kenya has been holding a series of insightful webinars on market and investment trends in Kenya even as the country continues to wade through the second wave of Covid-19.
On Wednesday, the lender held another webinar that looked at the emerging opportunities in the real estate sector in Kenya, in the face of a pandemic.
The real estate sector has been among the hard-hit by the sweeping pandemic. Many people have defaulted on paying their mortgage and companies have failed to honor deadlines on house construction and delivery.
Bank brought together George Laboso, head of Mortgage Absa Bank Kenya, Mugure Njendu, President of Architectural Association of Kenya, Grace Muamba, reRegionalManager and Head of Prestige Banking at Absa Bank Kenya, and Nancy Muthoni, Founder, Executive Producer, and CEO of Property Show.
“A lot of people have lost money in the real estate in Kenya for failing to work with professionals. Make sure that you work with professionals… Have your own lawyer. Do not just depend on the developer’s lawyer who is there to protect the interests of the developer,” says Nancy Muthoni.
“If you’re acquiring a loan from a bank, do your due diligence and always practice inclusion with all partners,” added Nancy Muthoni.
According to Mugure Njendu, the Covid-19 pandemic has forced Kenyans and policymakers to rethink the best ways to feed and satisfy the market needs in terms of real estate. She says there is a need for developers to change designs to go with the changing times.
“In real estate, a good design is a good business,” she says. “We are seeing great designers coming up with more ventilation and more lighting as the current market demands,” she added.
Mr. Geroge Laboso from Absa Kenya says that the bank is committed to ensuring that Kenyans interested in owning a house are facilitated to do so through affordable mortgage loans. “We have products that suit our customers,” he said adding that most Kenyans prefer constricting their own houses as opposed to buying.
At the same time, since the Covid-19 pandemic, Absa Bank has given tax holidays to at least 55,000 customers to shield them against the effects of Covid-19.