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Climate Change and Kenyan Real Estate: What You Need to Know

Climate Change and Kenyan Real Estate: What You Need to Know

Climate Change and Its Impact on Kenyan Real Estate: Insights from the Africa Climate Summit

The Africa Climate Summit, recently held at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) in Nairobi, Kenya, underscores the far-reaching effects of climate change across the continent and beyond. This summit, a collaborative effort between the Kenyan government and the African Union, seeks to address pressing climate-related challenges while advancing sustainable growth.

As the world confronts extreme weather events, rising temperatures, and other climate-influenced changes, the real estate market is also feeling the impact. A 2022 United Nations report projected that Africa experiences an annual economic loss ranging from US$7 billion to US$15 billion due to the effects of climate change. In this article, we explore how climate change shapes real estate prices and the short- and long-term implications for the Kenyan market.

Climate Change: A Kenyan Reality

Climate change in Kenya is a pressing issue. Prolonged droughts in Northern Kenya, devastating floods, and increasing frequency of extreme weather events present undeniable challenges. Coastal communities are on the frontlines, facing rising sea levels that threaten homes, businesses, and property values.

A recent report paints a concerning picture: 16% of Kenya's 213 natural heritage sites and a staggering 30% of its 71 cultural heritage sites are vulnerable to a 100-year coastal flooding event. Furthermore, insurance costs are escalating, directly impacting the affordability of homeownership. Recognizing the urgency of climate action and adaptation strategies is crucial to protect our communities and build a resilient future.

Factors Affecting Real Estate

Several factors, exacerbated by climate change, are transforming Kenya's real estate landscape:

Rising Temperatures and Housing Costs: Increasing global temperatures lead to extreme weather and rising sea levels. This translates to destructive storms, flood risks, and soaring utility costs. The heightened demand for electricity and water strains budgets, particularly in densely populated areas like Nairobi.

Extreme Weather Events: Properties in flood-prone areas, a major concern across Kenya, face the risk of damage and depreciation, leading to decreased property values. Extreme weather events also complicate property investment decisions, necessitating climate resilience and adaptation planning by developers.

Rising Sea Levels: Coastal regions are at the forefront of this threat. As sea levels steadily rise at an alarming rate, homes, infrastructure, and coastal properties are exposed, influencing values and insurance costs. Think about areas like Mombasa and Lamu.

Current Impact on Real Estate Prices in High-Risk Areas

Climate change is already influencing real estate prices in high-risk areas of Kenya:

Decreased Sales Prices: Areas vulnerable to climate-linked risks might see declining property values. For instance, flood-prone locations along the Tana River might be perceived as less desirable, reducing demand and lowering sales prices.

Fewer Home Sales: The reluctance to own property in high-risk areas has already resulted in reduced sales activity. Beachfront properties exposed to rising sea levels could be particularly affected.

Increased Insurance Costs: Homeowners in high-risk areas face rising insurance costs. Insurance companies adjust premiums based on climate-related risk. For example, flood-prone regions often require additional, costly coverage.

The Africa Climate Summit: A Call for Action

Kenya's leadership in hosting the Africa Climate Summit highlights the nation's commitment to proactive climate responses. The summit's focus on fostering climate-positive economic growth underscores the need for the real estate sector to embrace sustainability.


The effects of climate change on Kenyan real estate are becoming undeniable. The Africa Climate Summit serves as a platform to elevate climate action and drive sustainable real estate practices. As adaptation becomes paramount, the sector can mitigate risks, invest in solutions, and shape a resilient future for Kenya.

Let's remember: Those seeking homeownership on Ngong Road, considering coastal investment, or searching for affordable housing in Kenya should factor in climate projections when making their important real estate decisions.


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