If you are buying land in Kenya, whether as an individual or as a group, please follow the following guide:
Title Deed and Search
Ask the seller to show you the title deed or copy of the title deed. Then do a search at the ministry of lands to confirm who the real owners are or if the title has any Caveat on it.
The search will cost you Ksh. 520. Do a search with the local authorities to check if there are any unpaid land rates. If any, agree with the seller on who will settle the debt. Note that land cannot be transferred if there are pending land rates.
When buying land in Kenya you will need to go to the ministry of lands and buy 2 maps, one showing the exact measurements of the piece you are buying (called a mutation) and the other showing the neighbouring lands. Each costs Ksh 350.
Visit the Property
With your 2 maps and a surveyor (you can even do it yourself), visit the land you are buying and verify the details on the map. Check out all the beacons, talk to the neighbours and find out if there are any land disputes or other suspicious matters regarding the land
Purchase Price and Legal Agreement
Sit down with your seller and bargain the price then draw an agreement. The agreement can be done before a lawyer or you may decide to do it yourself. It’s not a must to be written by a lawyer. The lawyer’s fee should come to between 1-2% of the purchase price. For married people, it is advisable that the spouse MUST BE present when buying land.
Pay some amounts or as per your agreement. It is highly advisable not to pay the whole amount until you are done with the Lands Control Board, despite your liquidity.
Lands Control Board
Book a meeting with the Lands Control Board (LCB) in your county who usually meet once a month. It normally costs Ksh. 1,000 however you can obtain a special sitting of the LCB by booking for Ksh. 5,000. The LCB will issue consent for the sale of the land.
Final Payment to Seller
You can now pay the remaining balance to the seller after getting consent from LCB.
With the consent from LCB, a recent search (not older than 6 months), clearance form from County land office for land rates, the two maps, the agreement, KRA PIN, 2 passport photos and copy of the title deed, go to the ministry of lands to process change of ownership. This will cost you Kshs 5000.
Payment of Stamp Duty
At this stage, you can go and pay stamp duty i.e. according to the value of the land. This is 4% of sale value in municipalities and about 2% in reserves
Now the land belongs to you. But before celebrating, go to the ministry and do a search to confirm if the title has your name on it.
–Adopted from Property Manager- Dan Mullar