How to Get Sectional Titles for Property in Kenya
By Estate Cloud - 2022-06-05 - Kenya
The Ministry of Lands Gazetted the Sectional Properties regulations in December 2021 to provide a framework for the implementation of the Sectional Properties Act 2020.
The regulations outline the process of registration of sectional plans and conversion of registered long-term leases into sectional units.
The 6-step process (see image below) describes the development of the sectional titles from preparation to rate payment for each unit:
Source: Kaplan & Stratton Advocates
The Ministry had in a notice issued last year, stated that effective 10th May 2021, it would no longer register long term leases that did not comply with the provisions of the Act.
The Ac is intended to govern and simplify the process of registering sectional properties and provides for the division of buildings into units. In addition, it provides for the regularization/conversion of long term leases that are already registered at the Lands Registry.
Developers, owners or management companies are required to initiate the conversion process and submit the documents to the Ministry of Lands.
According to the Act, all long term leases that intend to confer ownership should be reviewed within two years from the date of commencement of the Act (28th December 2020), otherwise, the Registrar shall register a restriction against the title to the property to prevent further dealings on it.
Failure to comply with the conversion process amounts to an offence and the person shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding KES 20,000,000 or one-year imprisonment.
Under the Act and Regulations, the common property shall be managed by a corporation incorporated in accordance with section 17 of the Sectional Properties Act.
According to a commentary by legal firm Kaplan & Stratton Advocates, the corporation will be bound by provisions of the Act and not by those of the Companies Act, 2015
Rights and Obligations of Sectional Title Holders
- Upon issuance of sectional title, an owner may sub-divide or consolidate their unit by registering a sectional plan of sub-division, or consolidation respectively.
- Issuance with a sectional title also places the obligation to pay rent and rates with each unit owner.
- Applications for extension or renewal of lease terms are to be made by individual owners of units in a sectional plan, as provided under the Land (Extension and Renewal of Leases) Rules, 2017.
- An owner desiring to rent out his/her unit is required to notify the corporation of the address for effecting service, the name of the tenant and lapse of the tenancy.
New developments, where no lease has been registered will have to comply with the provisions of the Sectional Properties Act and Land Registration Act.
(Disclaimer; This article is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice)