However, if you are planning to buy a piece of land anywhere in Kenya, there are certain important procedures which you should follow lest you get swindled like many Kenyans.
Land is a very emotive issue in Kenya and if acquisition is not followed correctly, you may only have yourself to blame.
If you have identified the parcel you wish to purchase and established contact with the seller, ask to see the title deed or copy of title deed.
Do a search at the Ministry of Lands to confirm who the real owners are or if the title has any caveat on it. The search will cost you Ksh 520.
Do a search with the local authorities to check whether the parcel has any unpaid land rates. If any, agree with the seller on who will settle the debt.
It is important to note that land can’t be transferred if there are unpaid land rates.
Go to the Ministry of Lands and buy 2 maps, one showing the exact measurements of the piece you are buying (called mutation) and the other showing the neighbouring lands. Each costs Ksh 350
With your 2 maps and a surveyor (you can even do it yourself), visit the land you are buying and verify the details on the map. Check out all the beacons.
Sit down with your seller and bargain the price. Write down an agreement. The agreement can be done before a lawyer or you may decide to do it yourself.
The draft agreement does not necessarily need a lawyer involved. According to LSK, if the value of the land is below Ksh1 million, you pay the lawyer Ksh 3,000. If above Ksh1 million, the price is Ksh 8,000.
Pay the deposit or as agreed in your agreement. Paying the whole price is not recommended in case the deal falls through.
Book a meeting with the Lands Control Board (LCB) to issue consent for the land to be sold. They meet once a month and costs Ksh 1,000. You can also book a special LCB meeting for Ksh 5,000.
Pay the remaining balance after getting consent from LCB.
With the consent from LCB, a recent search (not more than 6 months), clearance form from county government regarding land rates, your two maps, the agreement, KRA PIN, 2 passport photos and a copy of the title deed, go to the Ministry of Lands and change ownership at a cost of Ksh 5,000.
At this stage, you no longer need the seller. Now go and pay stamp duty, that is, according to the value of the land, which is 4% of sale value in municipalities and 2% of sale value in reserves.
Now the land belongs to you. But before celebrating, visit the Ministry of Lands and do a search to confirm if it really reads your name.