Commercial and rental buildings owners in Kajiado County towns, a fast-growing Nairobi dormitory area, will annually pay special land rates amounting to billions.
The county government is targeting to collect Sh1 billion annually to boost revenues. Land rates are the biggest revenue earner for Kajiado.
Over the years, landlords have only been paying Sh500 in land rates covering the ground floor but a new law stipulates each floor is subject to a charge of Sh500 annually.
The county government is targeting satellite towns including Ong’ata Rongai, Kiserian, Ngong, Kitengela, Namanga, Isinya and Loitoktok.
Ongata Rongai has the biggest number of storeyed buildings estimated at 3,000. Ngong and Kitengela towns are ranked second and third with more than 5,000 such buildings.
In total the entire Kajiado is estimated to have more than 20,000 storeyed buildings, both commercial and residential, according to county planning department. The move has attracted mixed reactions from landlords. Richard Mokua who owns several rental houses in Ong’ata Rongai notes they are already paying taxes to Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).
“Rental houses business have become very unreliable with tenants moving out often considering the high cost of living. Most of us are servicing loans pocketing very little after expenses. County government need to conduct more public participation forums before implementing the law,’’ he said.