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How To Survive the First Year of Rental Property Business in Kenya

It’s exciting to become a landlord for the first time. And the good news is you have opened doors in a long-term financial plan, which will keep growing. However, you should know some things to do after becoming a landlord in the first year. The first year may not be lovely, but it will eventually be awesome.
Remember that it might be challenging to get the right tenants, but with the proper guidance, you can get them. 
So, How do you survive the first year of the rental property business in Kenya? Well, keep reading. 

The First Year as a Landlord in Kenya

As a landlord in Kenya, you will face various challenges in your first year. The most difficult part is finding and screening tenants, handling maintenance and repairs, and keeping up with legal and financial responsibilities.

However, here are a few steps to help you make your first year as a landlord go smoothly.


Before you rent out your property, it’s essential to have an explicit rental agreement in place. This document should outline the rental terms, including the rent amount, the tenancy length, and any property rules or regulations.

To find reliable tenants, screening them thoroughly is important. Screening includes checking references, verifying employment and income, and conducting a credit check.

As a landlord, you’ll be responsible for maintaining the property and handling any repairs. Be prepared to handle these tasks on time to ensure that your tenants are satisfied with their living on your property.

Ensure you understand any laws or regulations that apply to rental properties in Kenya, and keep accurate records of all financial transactions related to the property.

Good communication with your tenants is key to a successful landlord-tenant relationship. Ensure you are responsive to any questions or concerns your tenants may have and be available to address any issues that may arise.

By following these steps, you can set yourself up for a successful first year as a landlord in Kenya.

Challenges of the First Year of Property Business in Kenya 

The first year in the property business, or any other business, is not always a walk in the park. Some challenges are inevitable. The only sure way is learning to keep your head up all the time.

Here are the challenges you should expect in Kenya’s first year of the property business.


One of the biggest challenges for first-time landlords is finding and screening tenants. You should find reliable tenants who will pay their rent on time and take good care of the property.

As a landlord, you’ll be responsible for maintaining the property. It will be a financial challenge if you get bad tenants who will destroy your property. 

Managing the financial aspects of being a landlord. It will be challenging when you are a first-time property investor in Kenya. It will be a challenge to balance your rental income. You should learn the 50% rule to manage your rental income appropriately.

Dealing with legal issues as a new landlord can be an obstacle. You should follow the laws and regulations in the landlord-tenant bill in Kenya. Failure to comply with these laws can result in legal problems.

By being prepared for these challenges and seeking advice and support when needed, first-time landlords can successfully navigate the responsibilities of being a landlord.

Why You Should Be Ready as a New Landlord in Kenya

Landlords should be ready for the responsibilities of being a landlord because it can help them to avoid problems and ensure the success of their rental property in Kenya.

Kenya has the tenant-landlord bill, which regulates the landlord and tenant relationship. By familiarising yourself with these laws as a landlord, you can ensure to comply and avoid legal problems in return.

Before advertising your rental property, ensure there is a clear rental agreement to establish the rental terms. An agreement ensures you protect the rights and responsibilities of you and the tenant.

When finding tenants, ensure to search the background of each tenant. By doing that, you will avoid the challenge of dealing with stubborn tenants in your first year of a property business. 

Always have some spare cash for maintaining the property. Remember, you are responsible for maintaining the property unless a tenant chooses to sublet the property. 

Taking care of your properties helps you earn its maximum potential, even once you plan to resell.

You should be prepared to handle financial responsibilities like collecting rent, paying bills, and keeping accurate records. It’s important to be ready to handle these tasks to effectively manage the financial aspects of being a landlord. However, you can hire a property manager on your behalf if you are financially able.

Once you learn to manage your landlord responsibilities, you can succeed in your first year of property business in Kenya

Tips For Surviving the First Year of Property Business in Kenya

Starting a real estate business can be challenging, especially in the first year. Here are a few tips to help you survive and succeed in your first year of business.

Create a business plan 

A business plan will help you define your business goals, target market, and marketing strategy. It will also help you understand your business’s financial aspects and plan for the future.

Network and build relationships 

Building relationships with other real estate professionals, such as investors, agents, and property managers, can help you to find leads and gain valuable industry insights.

Market your business effectively 

Developing a solid marketing plan is essential for attracting clients and building your business. This may include creating a website, networking with potential clients, and using social media to promote your services.

Stay organised and manage your time effectively 

As a real estate professional, you’ll likely have a lot of tasks to juggle. Staying organised and managing your time effectively will help you to stay on top of everything and avoid becoming overwhelmed.

Be persistent and stay focused 

Starting a business can be challenging, and it’s likely that you’ll encounter setbacks along the way, especially in the first year. It’s essential to stay focused on your goals and be persistent in the face of challenges.

The Bottom Line

By following these tips and seeking advice and support when needed; you can increase your chances of survival and success in the first year of your real estate business.

Frequently Asked Questions 

1. How do I manage my first rental property?

The best thing to do to succeed in your first rental property is to draft clear and favourable rules for the tenants to follow. If you are not around, hire a property manager to do it on your behalf.

2. How do I make money with my first rental property in Kenya?

You can make money by selling or renting your first property in Kenya. When you sell, link with a professional property agent to help you get the maximum possible profit. On the other hand, if you want to rent, use the right methods to find tenants.

3. What is 50% of real estate?

The rule states that 50% of the monthly rental income should go to expenses regarding the rental property. With the other half, pay mortgages and let the rest remain as cash flow.

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