Things About Kenyan Real Estate Design I Find Ridiculous

Office blocks with no parking – This is very fresh in my head because I had a doctor’s appointment and the guard at the gate told me the parking spots are only for tenants of the building. How do the people who approve plans approve such nonsense?

Open plan kitchen – In my opinion, this works perhaps for single people houses. But mostly, people are adopting open plan kitchens from designs from countries where they don’t have live in help (the design is mostly for when the parents want to be able to see the kids as they are in the kitchen). Which in most cases doesn’t translate well here.

Four burner kitchen space – This gets on my nerves so much. Why have a kitchen (in a house with more than one room) where a six burner stove can’t fit?? Make it make sense. Even with a four burner, the gas cylinder ends up hanging awkwardly in the space.

Apartment blocks with 1.5 parking spaces – I know it is greed (the desire to have more apartments in a space) BUT COME ON!

Stairs that aren’t even – I don’t understand why some building have steps that are uneven.

Unnecessarily huge houses – We get it, you stole have money. Another angle to look at it is humongous houses in small plots. Which I don’t understand. The house doesn’t leave any space for outdoor or plants like… why? So that you can say you have a big house? I mean, I guess.

Pillars – This is continuation from above… what in the colonial hangover mess is the obsession with outside pillars? I think Kenyans feel it symbolizes wealth or something but really all is does is show how out of date one is.

Roofs – is there a word for the houses with unnecessary roofs? Is it a design thing? Doesn’t it cost more to do those weird triangle things?

Darkness – What is the issue with not wanting windows? Are Kenyan builders allergic to windows?? Even if we are talking about safety, there is a way to achieve light without sacrificing safety.

Wardrobes – what sense does it make to not have wardrobes in a bedroom? Is this a new thing? Why is it a thing that is happening now?

Balconies – OK we have heard all the talk about people hanging their clothes on balconies. But we must realise that this is a design flaw, right? Architects draw apartments from countries that have washing machines and dryers in their houses and therefore the balcony serves the purpose it is supposed to in those houses. In Kenya, where washer/dryer is not yet a thing, people will have to make do with what they have, hence why hanging clothes is common practice.

And lastly, DSQs that can’t even fit a wardrobe and single bed.

(FYI this list isn’t exhaustive)

Let me finish off by saying that we have to build/draw practical houses and not copy houses from other people/countries who have different needs/services available to them. I know capitalism is rampant but also, there is a lack of ideas and imagination.


One thought on “Things About Kenyan Real Estate Design I Find Ridiculous

  1. I look forward to building my own house, that will meet our needs. I have been wondering whether I am the only who thinks no parking in office blocks makes no sense, or one parking space for 3BR+apartments. Let’s not even start on the kitchens :-).


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