Settling for the best agricultural land for lease, buy or rent is a crucial decision. You will consider very complex factors for it. In this article, we explore the best tips to consider when you are looking for a productive farming land.
In achieving and living the Kenyan dream, you have not made it if you do not own a piece of land. Yet many land buyers and lessors get duped by failing to get a fertile land. If you follow the following tips, you will limit your risk of putting your money in a farm that will give you a raw deal.
Factors to consider searching for land in Kenya
- Access to market
- Soil quality
- Availability to clean water
- Connectivity to infrastructure
- Due diligence
- Farm history
Access to Markets
This decision is about the location. Your farm should be in the right location near the market where you intend to sell your farm outputs. It means it is not too far or expensive to sell your perishable products like milk or vegetables to customers. It should not be too near, for it will make it unaffordable to buy or lease. But the distance from markets is a non-issue if you can access local markets.
Soil fertility determines a Farm’s productivity. Its health quality will determine the best crops you can grow. Its nutrients predict the soil correction inputs you will need like fertilizers, manure and lime. For herders, it will impact your animal’s growth and health.
You need a simple soil test for this decision. Detailed analysis is by extension officers, commercial service providers or research firms like KARI. We recommend you do a simple soil test on budget and your own. You can buy a cheap soil tester online for soil PH analysis.
Availability of clean water
Sufficient supply for clean water is needed in irrigated farms. It is for watering plants, animals and other farm needs like washing and cooling.
It may have a connection to an external supply like the municipal water company. Internally you can source it from a river, water pan or a sunk borehole or well.
There are two considerations concerning water before buying the land. The cost of getting the water; monthly bill per unit or the cost of pumping water. The second is its quality or fitness for crop and livestock rearing. To determine it, use cheap water testers for simple pathological tests.
It entails physical facilities on or near the farm like cow sheds, stores, or roads. If it has some infrastructure like permanent shelters, it will be more expensive for you to buy or lease. However, this cost might be cheaper than constructing them.
Land that is near a good road network is expensive. Similarly, lands connected to piped water, electricity, sewerage lines and fences are more valuable.
Carry out due diligence process before committing your money. It will protect you from frauds, court cases or losing the value of your money.
Fraud cases in land selling are common in the region. Examples include forgery of land documents like titles and maps, double selling of the same piece of land to several buyers or unsolved inheritance and farm cases.
Try to work with credible professionals, a lawyer, a valuer and a surveyor from the onset. Visit the land offices independent of the land buyer and carry out a complete search on your own prior to closing the lease or sale agreement.
Learning farm history is crucial for buying decision. It will stop you from buying public land reserves like road, railway or riparian. If the land is swampy, it’s not worth your investment.
Finally, former land use can lend it unproductive. For instance, it may have heavy metals, chemicals, sewerage or farm animal waste residuals. All these can limit you from growing and selling and growing food fit for human consumption according to Global GAPs.
The community can support or break your farm. Your Neighbors dictate the social factors of successful farming like availability of market, workforce or security.
The considerations for your neighbours when buying land are.
- “Buy land near warm, helpful and good neighbours that in case you’re your lambs strayed, they can recognize and drive them back to your place for you?”
- Purchase land near a neighbour who practices the same production style as you. Pesticides and pollen from their land can impact your yields.
- “Good fences make good neighbours,” Be responsible and erect a good one.
- Invest in an area with ample security free of theft and civil unrests.
where to buy productive farming land in Kenya?
The guide has tips on buying or renting productive farming land for profitable farming. Do not buy the first one for sale you come across. You can find them a considerable distance near major towns like Muran’ga, Kiambu, Eldoret, Thika, Nakuru or Nairobi.
Settle in a location which is well connected with quality roads piped water and electricity. Carry out a soil test and due diligence to decide. Another consideration is the neighbouring community and previous land use.
Do you think we have left any consideration? Let us know in the comments below. Happy land hunting.
The legal procedure for buying land in Kenya
Are you wondering what is the legal steps to purchase land in Kenya as a foreigner or a local investor? In the following section, we give you 9 crucial steps that you must follow in buying land in Kenya. They are;
- Conduct a land search; inspect the title deed and other ownership documents on lands’ registry office or the ardhisasa land system to ascertain the real owner/seller
- Offer & price negotiation; After completing all negotiations, the buyers advocate should draft a written letter of offer or intent to buy the piece of land. The letter of intent should specify the the details of the seller and purchaser, the description of the property on offer, and the proposed purchase price and modes of payment.
- Deposit payment & sales agreement; Usually drafted by the seller’s advocate upon payment of agreed deposit amount. It documents all the terms and conditions of the sale.
- Transfer of documents; The sellers advocate will then prepare transfer documents to complete the transaction between the 2 sellers.
- Stamp duty valuation; request for a site visit from a government valuer. the valuation report will inform on the amount of stamp duty to be paid.
- Payment of duty: The buyer is obligated to pay a stamp duty levied on the true value of the land on the open market as at the date of transfer.
- Transfer Registration; The commissioner of lands will issue the consent to transfer. document effecting the transfer of land ownership from the seller to buyer.
- Exchange of ownership documents; Upon surrender of all documents from the seller, payment of any outstanding balance and paying of the requisite stamp duty the process of buying land in Kenya is deemed complete.