Nairobi residents are moving in droves to upmarket estates where property owners rent out fancy bedsitters, known as studio apartments.
Studio apartments offer a good compromise between comfortable living and housing costs attracting Nairobi residents to rich neighbourhoods.
The furnished studio apartments have a master room with a fully fitted kitchen, a dining area and a shower room.
Unlike other bedsitters with basic amenities, studio apartments are branded and carefully serviced to attract Nairobi residents.
Besides having state-of-the-art facilities, studio apartments in Runda, Kilimani, Upper Hill, Kileleshwa, Kitisuru, Westlands River Side Drive, and Karen are preferred due to improved infrastructure in the areas.
According to Knight Frank, a real estate firm, the struggle for water, electricity outages, improper sewerage, and waste disposal is a rare occasion in upmarket estates which have revolutionised the bedsitters housing industry.
Improved security has also compelled Nairobi residents to relocate to leafy suburbs, renting out studio apartments.
"The developments may be a reaction from people looking for sensible rates in the upper market areas," Knight Frank indicated.
Improved transport systems with less chaos also attract most Nairobi residents to areas renting out studio apartments.
HassConsult, a real estate company, in a separate report, indicated that studio apartments are usually up for sale with the cost depending on the apartment size, floor level as well as the view from the apartment.
"Apparently, the higher you go, the better the view so the higher the cost," it indicated.
In leafy suburbs, studio apartments cost north of Ksh6 million and have large spaces of up to 420 square feet. In the middle-income settlements in Nairobi, 300-400 square feet cost less, ranging from Ksh3.5 to Ksh4 million.
VAAL Real Estate also launched Symphony Residence in Lavington, Nairobi, a concept accommodating various housing and investment solutions, including studios, 1, 2 and 3 bedrooms.
"We handed over our first project in Kileleshwa in October 2020, and we will be handing over our second complete project Elite Residence in Westlands in a few weeks’ time,” VAAL Kenya stated, indicating a high demand for the houses.
Specific Unique Features of Studio Apartments
Some studio apartments are already serviced with soft furnishings and cooking utensils so that long-term tenants do not need to bring their own. Services such as housekeeping, front office and parking are included in the rent.
Unlike normal bedsitters, studio apartments are spacious, allowing for the proper fitting of kitchen appliances. The bare minimum allows occupants to fit cookers and even fridges. They also have enough working area.
The toilet area and a wash hand basin are fitted with a mirror. Some designs may locate the wash hand basin outside the washroom.
Living areas can accommodate at least one three-seater chair of choice, a coffee table and a TV bay area.
The spacing also leaves space for the bedroom area leaving a desirable space for movement.