Navigating Kenya’s Real Estate Landscape From Ms. Eunice Macharia’s Perspective.

Ms. Eunice Macharia is the Chairperson of the Estate Agents Registration Board. After the Athi River demolitions, she spoke to the press giving her perspective.

House demolitions in Athi River

Insights from Estate Agents Registration Board Chairperson, Ms. Eunice Macharia

In the midst of the recent demolitions in Athi River, a sobering voice rose above the rubble, that of Ms. Eunice Macharia, the Chairperson of the Estate Agents Registration Board.

Ms. Macharia shared her invaluable insights on how to shield oneself from the clutches of land cartels in the real estate industry. She emphasized the need for thorough due diligence.

The Cartel Conundrum

Ms. Macharia began by acknowledging the heart-wrenching scenes of homes, churches, and schools being razed in Athi River. However, she firmly asserted that amid the chaos, the real enemy—the cartels within the real estate industry—remain untouched.

READ ALSO: House Demolitions in Athi River. Buyer Beware. How Not to Get Conned.

House demolitions in Athi River

The prevalence of irregular government land allocation and land grabbing orchestrated by these cartels poses a significant threat. This leaves developers and individuals vulnerable to substantial losses.

Government Complicity and Challenges

The intricate web of corruption extends beyond the cartels. It now involves government officials who manipulate land records and criminals producing fraudulent land titles.

Ms. Macharia pointed out the challenges faced by dedicated units at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) and the Environment and Land Courts in catching up with these perpetrators.

The corruption, she notes, permeates from central government down to the local level.

Estate Agents Registration Board’s Initiative

Ms. Macharia revealed that the Estate Agents Registration Board is collaborating closely with the government to revamp the real estate industry. The focus is on regulating and holding accountable the estate agents facilitating land transactions.

READ ALSO: How New Laws Will Tackle Fraud in Land Purchasing Schemes

However, she urged investors to exercise caution, emphasizing that due diligence extends beyond a routine search at the Land’s registry.

Thorough Due Diligence: A Necessity

Ms. Macharia advocates for a comprehensive due diligence process, citing a case presided over by Justice Anthony Ombwayo. The judge stressed that a certificate of official search alone is insufficient. He urged property buyers to delve deeper into the complexities of land transactions.

READ ALSO: A Beginner’s Guide and Legal Process to Buying Land In Kenya

House demolitions in Athi River

The suggested due diligence process involves using online platforms like Ardhisasa for official searches, reviewing parcel files, checking Ndung’u Report and National Land Commission records, consulting local administrators, and verifying information from county offices.

READ ALSO: Ardhisasa: Kenya’s Newest Land Information Management Tech

Professional Assistance and Verification

For added security, Ms. Macharia recommended enlisting the services of professionals such as registered real estate agents, land surveyors, property valuers, physical planners, and lawyers. Verification of the seller’s National ID (for individuals) and company details (for corporate entities) is crucial. Additionally, investors should scrutinize the success history of land buying companies before engaging in transactions.

READ ALSO: Important Property Development Team Members

A Call to Action

Ms. Macharia urged investors to play an active role in upholding due diligence while the Estate Agents Registration Board combats rogue brokers. Simultaneously, she calls on relevant government agencies, especially the Ministry of Lands, to intensify efforts in uprooting criminal land cartels and expedite the digitization of land records.

READ ALSO: Real Estate Developers in Kenya Must Renounce Their Ways or Perish (Opinion)

In the face of challenges, Ms. Eunice Macharia’s perspective serves as a guiding light for those navigating Kenya’s real estate landscape, encouraging vigilance and diligence in every property transaction.

Fidelis Rosalia
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