Why Nairobi Landlords Are Asking Tenants to Pay Rent in Dollars 

  • CBK Pension Towers shines amongst tallest skyscrapers in Nairobi.
    CBK Pension Towers shines amongst tallest skyscrapers in Nairobi.
    CBK
  • According to real estate agency Knight Frank, landlords renting out office spaces in Nairobi prefer payment in dollars.

    According to the company's Africa Office Market Dashboard Quater 3 report, the decision to prefer payment in dollars was occasioned by the depreciation of the Kenyan shilling.

    The report reviewed office letting in Nairobi between July to September 2022. 

    Additionally, the report indicated that the uptake of office spaces declined in the period under review despite maintaining the renting rate.

    An image of office buildings in Upperhill, Nairobi County.
    An image of office buildings in Upperhill, Nairobi County.
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    Uncertainty about the August 9 polls was also a factor that impacted the uptake of office spaces.

    "Market activity remained subdued in Q3 2022, primarily due to the uncertainty in the lead-up to and following the General Election held in August 2022. This was further exacerbated by the challenging macroeconomic conditions.

    "The prime monthly office rates remained stable at Ksh1,560 per square meter," read the report in part.

    However, it was projected that the demand for office spaces would increase in the coming months, given the country's stability witnessed after the elections' completion.

    The report by Knight Frank barely came days after Hass Consult, another real Estate, HassConsult released a quarter review for the same period.

    Also noted in the HassConsult report was the slow uptake of office spaces, particularly the Upper Hill.

    "Upperhill is experiencing an oversupply of commercial office space that has seen developers adopt a “wait-and-see” attitude, for units in the suburb to get sold and vacancy levels to improve," read the report in part. 

    HassConsult further indicated that the land prices in the suburbs were dropping as more buyers preferred settling in satellites. 

    A collage of houses in the Kings Serenity affordable houses project in Kajiado.jpg
    A collage of houses in the Kings Serenity affordable houses project in Kajiado County commissioned by President William Ruto on October 18, 2022.
    William Ruto