Kenyatta’s Affordable Housing Plans Move Forward

Published: Wednesday, October 10th, 2018 by Arman Smigielski

On September 26, UNOPS announced, with the Government of Kenya, plans to deliver 100,000 affordable homes in Kenya through a mixture of public investment, UNOPS resources, and private funding.

This is the latest news in a series of actions, as part of President Kenyatta’s Big Four agenda, to address the country’s housing shortage through building 500,000 affordable housing units by 2022. The World Bank has estimated Kenya’s housing shortage to be 2 million units.

In July the tax code was amended to lower prices for homebuyers: it exempted first-time affordable housing purchases from stamp duty taxes (between two and four percent of the total value) and gave a 15% tax break to home buyers who purchased a home as part of the government’s affordable housing program.

The government has also been cooperating with the private sector. Kenya’s National Housing Corporation has begun constructing homes on a combination of government and private land. The Kenyan Mortgage Refinancing Company, funded by the World Bank, Kenyan government, and private investors, will provide long-term funding to mortgage lenders and purchase privately owned buildings to resell to Kenyans.