Westlands has the highest monthly rents for apartments in Nairobi amid high demand from middle-income Kenyans and expatriates, offering property developers lucrative returns.
A report by real estate and investment firm, JLL Africa shows the monthly rent for one and two-bedroom apartments in the suburb range between Sh65,000 and Sh110,000.
Three-bedroom apartments in the area rent for between Sh70,000 and Sh140,000.
The rents in the enclave can be more expensive by up to Sh30,000 compared to other areas such as Kilimani, Kileleshwa, Parklands and Muthaiga.
The high rents in Westlands highlight demand for the units by highly-paid working class and entrepreneurs in an area that boasts close proximity to Nairobi’s CBD, the United Nations complex in Gigiri and a host of blue chip firms that have set base in Westlands.
Property owners have adjusted rent prices to match the demand and also mirror inflation that has led to the cost of building the houses and also providing other amenities.
“Apartments in neighbourhoods such as Kilimani, Kileleshwa, Lavington and Westlands have seen strong rental growth,” JLL Africa says in the report.
READ: Mi Vida to build low-cost apartments at Garden City
One and two-bedroom apartments in Kilimani and Kileleshwa are priced from Sh60,000 to Sh80,000 while similar units in Lavington range from Sh65,000 to Sh85,000.
Three-bedroom apartments in Kilimani and Kileleshwa rent for between Sh70,000 and Sh130,000 while similar units in Lavington start from Sh75,000 and reach highs of Sh140,000.
In Parklands and Muthaiga, the rent for three-bedroom apartments is set from Sh75,000 to Sh130,000.
The attractiveness of Westlands has been further boosted by the construction of the Nairobi Expressway which gives motorists an opportunity to beat traffic jams to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.
The high rent prices in the popular suburbs have prompted the demolition of stand-alone houses that were built decades ago which are being replaced with apartments as developers respond to demand.
People living close to the big cities pay a premium in rent prices because of the proximity to jobs and diverse social and economic facilities including top hospitals and restaurants.
Construction of supermarkets, banks and entertainment joints in the suburbs has further attracted people who have now been spared from relying on the CBD for the services.
ALSO READ: Coast developers uproot bungalows for skyscraper apartments
But while rental charges have been on the uptick, the selling prices of apartments in the posh estates have stagnated due to oversupply.
“The high-end apartment market in Nairobi is grappling with static unit sales prices performance, attributable to an excess supply of apartments in Kilimani, Lavington, Parklands and Kileleshwa, which is placing downward pressure on values,” the report says.
“Applying co-living principles could make apartments more affordable per resident while driving up occupancy and unit pricing.” Co-living refers to sharing some features like the lounge.
→ [email protected]