2 min read
Due Diligence

People have dreams of owning a property once in their lifetime and most prefer to invest directly in land since it accounts for the major cost component of any Real Estate purchase and so far it has a higher rate of return compared to any other property type. 

It also gives the buyer the freedom of choice. However it's wise enough for one to do a thorough DUE DILIGENCE while purchasing land. What is DUE DILIGENCE? It's an investigation of potential investment before making a lifetime commitment in order to confirm all facts and keep an investor's resources safe before making any transactions. It's considered a must do action of anyone thinking of investing. The purpose of this in Real Estate is to give enough info on the property and it's also intended to hold sellers accountable as well as spare the buyers from being conned. Here is a checklist on what to do;

✓Land identification It's advisable to confirm that the property you want to buy exists. Fraudsters are everywhere trying to look out for who con next. Pay a site visit to that particular location and ask as many questions as you can. Ask for ownership proof since anybody can pretend to be selling a property they don't own. You should seek help from a professional surveyor. They will not only measure the land you intend to purchase but they will also provide a detailed legal description including marking property boundaries, zoning status, flood plains or any issues with protected land etc.

✓ search at lands office After identifying the parcel of land of your preference, request the vendor to issue you a copy of the land title deed to help with the search at a small fee. The search results help in  •revealing the changes of ownership through deeds as well as the legal dues with respect to the land proposed for acquisition.  •Discloses whether or not the property has any tenures and helps you uncover any land disputes, unpaid land rates which should be considered in the purchase price. It's advisable to ask for a certified copy of the Green Card to confirm that the land information on the land search certificate is accurate. Preferably, involve the area elders and county officials who ensure that the land deals are done in a transparent manner e.g preventing an uncle from selling family land without the family's consent.

✓Legal representation It's important to hire a lawyer who specializes in property transaction matters, to guide you on the transaction procedures since there are legal processes to be adhered to when buying land. The lawyer helps you draw agreements based on terms acceptable to both the buyer and the seller. They also help with getting clearance documents such as land rates clearance from the county and land rent clearance from the Ministry of Lands.

✓Buying from a company When buying land from a business company due diligence requires you to obtain the registration certificate of the entity to confirm it's legal existence. A KRA pin certificate to verify the legitimacy of the company and it's directors. This is to also ascertain whether the company is involved in any land fraud case. Request for the original copy of the title deed and a certified copy of the land documents from the company to ensure that all the details are accurate. Bottom line, when purchasing property, it's your duty to ensure that you get the asset you are paying for, given the high risks involved in the purchase. So get out there and do your DUE DILIGENCE! 

All the plots have FREEHOLD title deeds.

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