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Firm’s innovative model stirs industry

George Kebaso @Morarak

Renovate, sell, rent and manage a landlord’s property is a unique model in town that is saving time, money and headache for landlords.

Introduced recently, the model is gaining ground in the property market. For instance, the recent handover of Euromax Heights building complex from Rama Homes in Nairobi placed Richland Properties at the heart of a competitive property market.

Sharleen Nyanjui, Head of Management at Richland Properties, says their innovative model has eased challenges that sometimes depress property owners.

Speaking during the handing over ceremony that saw Richland Property Limited take up management of Euromax Heights property from Rama Homes in Nairobi, Nyanjui called on potential homeowner clients to grab the opportunity geared towards enabling affordable housing.

“Many landlords have problems managing tenants these days. Some of the renters are difficult, perhaps because of the harsh economic times. We do a thorough background check on tenants before we secure shelter for them. We even negotiate rent for them,” she said.

With only an identification card and the tenant’s PIN number, Richland Property staff check with Credit Reference Bureaus (CRBs) to ascertain their financial health. “We don’t want to give our clients’ problematic tenants as it can be costly on our side and fuel mistrust between us and the unit owners,” Nyanjui said.

Other products the firm offers include cleaning services, garbage collection and property maintenance. “We use our staff plumbers and electricians to repair properties that we manage,” she said. 

Depending on negotiations, Richland can pay up to between three months and one-year upfront rent to the owners of buildings. “Using our partners’ funds, we pay a property’s rent upfront to the landlord then take up the risk and hustle that comes with rent collection,” she added.

For clients who wish to buy a house, Richland Properties pays up to 50 per cent of the total amount to the seller and then gives the client a repayment plan. It is a relief to the  client who doesn’t have to pay the entire amount required to acquire the house all at once,” she said.

Richland manages 15 properties and is negotiating for 10 more  in Nairobi.The firm is exploring Kakamega and Kisumu where real estate has  picked up. “We have also been entrusted with incomplete buildings where owners had challenges of effecting smooth transfers. With bank funding, we completed them in a short period to recover the money from rent,” Nyanjui said.

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