Here Are The Top Affordable Neighborhoods To Rent In The Nairobi Metropolitan Area

Linah Amondi . 4 months ago

BuyRentKenya

estate intel

Nairobi

Nairobi Metropolitan Area

Here Are The Top Affordable Neighborhoods To Rent In The Nairobi Metropolitan Area

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Using the 30% rent thumb rule, an average citizen can afford to rent a Kshs 18,000 unit in the Nairobi Metropolitan Area (NMA). Notably, 80% of residents in Nairobi are tenants. We therefore sought to highlight the top middle-income areas to rent an affordable unit in the NMA under Kshs 20,000 per month, with a…


Introduction

In our previous article, we highlighted that the majority of Nairobi residents are middle-income citizens and below, earning a monthly wage of Kshs 60,000 and below. Using the 30% rent thumb rule, then the average citizen can afford to rent a Kshs 18,000 unit in the Nairobi Metropolitan Area (NMA) per month, without being burdened.

Notably, 80% of residents in Nairobi are tenants. We therefore sought to highlight the top middle-income areas to rent an affordable unit in the Nairobi Metropolitan Area (NMA) under Kshs 20,000 per month, with a reference of one-bedroom units. According to the interesting data shared by our partners, BuyRentKenya, below are some of the residential areas falling under the Kshs 20,000 rent threshold in the NMA:

Key to also note is that affordability is not only limited to the above areas. This is because there are more neighborhoods that fall within the aforementioned threshold such as Utawala, Imara Daima, Umoja, and Kitengela among others.

  • Affordability Typically Lies Towards The Outskirts Of Nairobi

In comparison, the locations closely neighboring the city center are typically unaffordable to the average citizens despite being the most preferred. These include areas such as Westlands, Upperhill, Kilimani and Parklands, among others, with their rental rates for a sample one bedroom apartment ranging from Kshs 50,000 per month. As such, the areas farther from the CBD are highly preferred by the majority of residents, due to their affordability.

  • Syokimau, Ruiru, And Rongai Are Among The Most Affordable Middle-Income Areas In The NMA

While the aforementioned areas in the map feature within the Kshs 20,000 monthly rent threshold, some areas are more affordable than the others. These include Syokimau, Ruiru and Rongai, among others, with rental rates of sample one bedroom apartments ranging from as low as Kshs 10,000 per month. Below is the description of sample affordable areas to rent in the NMA:

  • Syokimau & Mlolongo

Syokimau and Mlolongo are both located in Machakos county. Both neighborhoods are easily accessible from Nairobi’s city center via the Mombasa Road and Nairobi Expressway which interestingly commences from Mlolongo. One bedroom rents in the areas are capped from Kshs 10,000 to Kshs 20,000 per month, with major amenities within the neighborhood being Gateway Mall, Grand Pacific Mall, Kings Premier Inn among others.

  • Ruiru

Nestled in Kiambu County along Thika Superhighway, Ruiru estate offers one bedroom apartments ranging from Kshs 10,000 to Kshs 18,000 per month. Major amenities within or neighboring the estate include the Ruiru Sports Club, Kenyatta University Ruiru Campus, and Spur Mall among others. Notably, Ruiru also hosts the country’s first Special Economic Zone, Tatu City, and the Northlands City.

  • Ongata Rongai

Ongata Rongai is located in Kajiado County. It is easily accessible from Nairobi via Magadi Road. Monthly rents in this area range from Kshs 10,000 to Kshs 17,000, with key amenities within and surrounding it being the Maasai Mall, and Masai Lodge among others. As a diverse neighborhood, Rongai also hosts tertiary students besides young adults and families, from the Multimedia University and Africa Nazarene institution among others.

  • Waiyaki Way i.e Kinoo & Uthiru

Kinoo and Uthiru are both located along Waiyaki Way, in Kiambu County. Monthly rents in these neighborhoods range from Kshs 10,000 to Kshs 17,000. Amenities within and surrounding the area include: Kinoo Primary School, Helfen Hospital, and Uthiru Arcade among others.

  • Kasarani

Kasarani estate is located in Nairobi County, off Thika Superhighway. One bedroom rents in the neighborhood range from Kshs 14,000 per month. Major amenities within or neighboring it include Thika Road Mall, Kasarani Police Station, and Kasarani Primary School. Additionally, the estate hosts the country’s renowned national stadium, Kasarani Stadium. 

  • Kikuyu

Kikuyu is a residential neighborhood located in Kiambu County. It is easily accessible via Waiyaki Way from Nairobi’s city center. The monthly rents for one bedroom units in this area range from Kshs 17,000 to Kshs 20,000. 

  • Ruaka

This is a middle income residential area located in Kiambu County, and easily accessible via the Limuru Road from the Nairobi city center. While it features in the Kshs 20,000 threshold, it is relatively higher compared to other middle-income areas, with monthly rents ranging from Kshs 17,000 to Kshs 25,000. This is mostly influenced by its strategic position around affluent areas in Nairobi such as Runda, and the presence of key amenities such as the Two Rivers Mall. 

  • Improved Infrastructure And Amenities Enhancing The Preference Of Satellite Estates, Besides Pricing

While pricing is a key point determining the affordability and preference of an area, we note that improved infrastructure and amenities have also enhanced the preference of the aforementioned satellite areas over time. The completion of key roads such as Thika Superhighway, the Expressway and its lower deck, Bypass, and Namanga road among others have enhanced seamless transportation systems as well as opening up the surrounding areas for establishments. These have consequently given rise to shopping malls, master planned projects, schools and hospitals among other amenities that drive the demand for estates in the satellite areas.

  • There Has Been An Overall Increase In The Rental Rates Overtime

Given the improved infrastructure and amenities, most areas have witnessed an increase in their rental rates over time. This is in addition to the rising cost of land and construction materials. Example, areas such as Ruaka, Syokimau, and Kitengela have witnessed an 11% average growth in their rates over the last seven years, though still deemed affordable. 

 

Overall, as most people work in Nairobi’s city center and its neighboring commercial zones like Westlands, Kilimani and Upperhill, majority live far or in its outskirts due to affordability. Notably, pricing is not only the key driving factor given the improved infrastructure networks and amenities.

We love your feedback! Let us know what you think about Nairobi’s top affordable areas to rent by emailing [email protected].

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