KAMPALA – Rapid urbanisation and limited land for more housing units are influencing the demand for condominium units in the country, a new survey has indicated.
The survey recently released by Stanbic Properties Uganda Limited, a subsidiary arm of Stanbic Uganda Holdings Limited revealed that Condominiums are becoming increasingly popular, particularly with agile young people stepping up into homeownership and keen to own homes they can easily manage payments with monthly installments.
Having the freedom to take long breaks from your home without worrying about thieves breaking into your home, living your life without worrying about rent at the end of every month, and worrying about finding another place to rent when your landlord announces a hike in rent.
The survey further indicated that the condo sub-sector currently commands about 40 per cent of the entire real estate in Kampala Metropolitan Area, particularly Kampala, and Wakiso Distract, in areas of Luzira, Ntinda, Najeera, Kiwakutule, Kololo and Nagguru.
Other areas include Naalya, Lubowa, and Entebbe.
Industry expert Abbas Rasheed who also owns a popular real estate firm, Universal Multipurpose Enterprises says the demand for condominiums is pushed by a steadily growing availability of affordable finance for both developers and condominium buyers, and Ugandans based overseas who prefer avoiding the hustle of construction from scratch.
Abbas says that the Condo’s affordability and easy maintenance, have also contributed greatly to its popularity, especially among the mid income earners.
The condominium’s popularity in Kampala’s real estate and mortgage sector has bloomed of late, accounting for at least 60% of the total units mortgaged last year, the survey further indicated.
“Condominiums are often priced lower than single-family homes, and for younger people interested in home ownership, a condo can be a great first step,” he said.
“These cosmopolitan areas are becoming increasingly popular for young middle income home owners, who would rather buy a condo than a family house,” he said.
A condominium is a form of multifaceted apartment building, whose specified units are separately owned, and the remainder, such as corridors and recreation areas, is collectively owned.
Experts say that Uganda needs an orderly response to rapid urbanisation, which expects to grow at 5.6% per annum. That would be an affordable housing supply.
However, the widening economic gap between the poor and the wealthy is one of the major factors hindering the proper take-off of Uganda’s housing sector in urban areas, with over 60% of the population in urban areas living in slums.
For an average middle-class consumer, realtors say, the idea of paying for a separate ownership of individual units in a multiple unit building is a natural step up from the gruelling monthly rent payments that majority have to endure in their early professional life.
Rasheed says houses built in organised communities are fast-becoming the choice of preference today as they are easy to buy compared to a single bungalow that home owners have to take loads of time to build.
Although they have not existed for long, statics indicate that estates are developing very fast in middle-class residential neighbourhoods in Uganda.
The development and ownership of condominiums is governed by the Condominium Property Act, 2001 and the regulations thereunder.