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Your Home Away from Home

The master bedroom with a lovely view

A place where you can enjoy the comforts of home and still feel like you are on holiday at the same time is a home away from home. A magical place like this house in Naivasha where at the crack of dawn, the sun welcomes itself slowly into your bedroom, one of the 6 double ensuite bedrooms in the house. You get out of bed, walk over to the balcony and take in the spectacular views of Lake Naivasha and the hills surrounding from your lavish home.

You walk down the stairs of your beautifully designed and furnished home to the horse-shoe shaped entertainment kitchen and fix yourself a cup of coffee. As the steam rises from your cup to your face, you close your eyes and inhale deeply the smell of freshly brewed coffee.

Suddenly the sound of banging pots and pans brings your thoughts back to your surroundings. It’s the domestic staff making breakfast for the family from the heavy-duty kitchen. After popping in, to say a quick good morning and asking them to also fix you a nice bowl of salad at lunchtime with the fresh vegetables from the veg patch, you make your way to the sofa in the living room where you finish enjoying your cup of coffee.

The view of the living room from upstairs

The large living room is open plan with a dining area and a bar. “Do I read a chapter on my current novel or go for a swim?” You ask yourself after realizing you’ve been sitting in the living room lost in thought for a while after taking your last sip. You finally decide to go swimming dashing back upstairs to change. On your way down, the sunlight peering through the balcony door from the upstairs study room catches your attention.

You open the living room door that leads onto the shaded verandah and look out on to your 25-acre property which is based at the foothills of Kenya’s dormant Mt. Longonot. It really is a beautiful home.

A memory pops into your mind of the last time your friend Vicky and her family visited. You did spend quite a bit of time sitting out here on the verandah chatting and even had a bonfire at night at the large fire pit.

The inviting swimming pool

Past the beautifully kept garden, you can see the watering hole frequented by zebras, giraffes, impalas and other wildlife. To get to the swimming pool, you walk past the fully functioning private tented camp that comprises of two tents.

You know a huge part of this home was the previous owner’s love for horses which have been an integral theme in the design and layout; so much so that the property comes with a beautiful training arena, watering trough and 10 beautifully built stables, making daily horse rides in this beautiful scenery a dream. “I’ll ask the fam if they want to go riding later in the afternoon, ” you think to yourself.

Learn more about this lovely property in Naivasha.

 

“The only impossible journey is the one you never begin.” – Anthony Robbins

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The coast is heaven over Christmas and here is why….

Palm trees, sea view and white beaches are always the recipe for a relaxing holiday… but for Christmas??? We traditionally associate Christmas with frosty mornings, cosy fires and blistering winds, so the idea of heading to the beach seems a bit “out there”.

But after you have had a beach Christmas you may find it very hard to go back! Imagine waking up on Christmas morning to the sounds of the waves, a light breeze, typical of this time of year, is gently blowing through the trees. The kids, of course, are already up and getting ready to jump into the pool for a Christmas swim!

The presents are pilled under an arty piece of driftwood, lovingly decorated earlier that week.

With the sun shining through the house, you will be tempted to head to the beach for a swim, goggling or perhaps have a go at some water sports. The warm weather is perfect for a day of family fun!

By mid-day, everyone is hungry for a light, fresh Christmas lunch on the verandah or by the pool. No more slaving in the kitchen producing a piping hot feast!

The afternoon brings a certain calmness that only a beach holiday can bring. The kids are busy playing with their new toys, while you relax with a glass of bubbles, Pimms or a cold glass of wine.

With a sigh, you’ll think to yourself, it’s going to be a good year!

We have a large portfolio of stunning beach houses. If you would like to spend more Christmases are the coast- get in touch.

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Top 3 tips for an al fresco Christmas

When you think of Christmas, you’re probably thinking of snow, reindeers and roasted chestnuts! Christmas in Kenya is obviously a slightly different affair.  By the time December 25th rolls around, families in Kenya are in the midst of a sunny summer, breaking out the sunscreen and heading to outdoors in droves.

The climate lends itself to a different kind of festive celebration! Sitting in a ‘cosy dining room’ isn’t the idea of heaven when the sun is shining outside! So time to head outdoors for an al fresco Christmas! Below are some top tips on how to through the best tropical Christmas.

Make sure you have a covered space outside

Obviously, you want to enjoy the weather, but there is nothing worse than sitting unprotected in the hot sun! This beautiful beach house in Lamu is designed to shelter, whilst providing a memorable setting for a family Christmas.

Prepare for rain and wind!

I know we are saying Christmas bring lovely sunshine, but… you can never be too sure..especially in Nairobi! In this house, the floor to ceiling windows provide the perfect indoor-outdoor flow! Plus imagine how great that fireplace would look covered in Christmas stockings and decorations!

Plan your party around the pool

We all know what kids are like at Christmas! Excitement levels are sky high. Not only do pools provide a beautiful water feature (add floating candles in the evening for a more festive feel) but they are excellent for keeping the kids busy. Pools also have the effect of making the event less formal. Perhaps change up your Christmas meal to include a more of a  “BBQ feel” with salads accompanying the traditional turkey.

 

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Why invest in Laikipia?

Photo credit: Dion Van Aardt
1- More bang for your buck
We all know about Nairobi land prices, don’t we? Sky high! That’s why we are so excited about buying property in Laikipia. Put simply, the Nanyuki region offers buyers a chance to get more bang for their buck! Set in foothills of Mt Kenya, only 2 and a half hours from Nairobi, the area perfectly combines peaceful, natural surroundings with accessibility.  As many of you know, Nanyuki Town is growing into quite the bustling town, full of capital ventures and developments, increasing the investment potential for landowners.
2- The Good Life
If you’re tired of the drudgery of city life, why not move up-country and live the “good life”? With plenty of fresh air and areas of pure wilderness, one can live a healthier and more active lifestyle. Perhaps keep some chickens, or grow your own vegetables in between hikes up Mt Kenya, drives through the various wildlife conservancies and fishing trips.
Whether you are relocating completely or buying a weekend/holiday home, leaving behind the city pollution (noise and air) will do wonders for the mind and general health. Trade in the traffic, pollution and stress for green landscapes and a slower, gentler way of life.
3- Grand Designs 

Ever dreamt of building your own home? With the endless scope of land opportunities here, this concept can become a reality! The land parcels available range from 2-50- acres so no matter how big or small your building dreams are there is something for everyone, no matter what your budget is.

Of course, the vast areas of space are ideal for farming investments! Some of Kenya’s finest beef, pork and chicken come from the Nanyuki region and one cannot fail to notice the rose and flower farms scattered across the region, selling products all over the world.

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Top 4 single-story homes!

Traditional colonial houses in Kenya are often single-story with bags of character and charm! Today, we are looking at our top 4 single-story houses and the reasons why we think you will love them too!

Up first is this beautiful 3 bedroom cottage, nestled an Acacia thicket on the shores of Lake Naivasha. The rooms are designed to create a feeling of space and light. From every angle, you can see the gorgeous gardens. You’ll love the live-on verandah, overlooking the lake. It is the heart of the house and one of our favourite places to be. The single story has the effect of blending the cottage into the surroundings, making you feel part of the landscape.

Single story houses can often get a bad rep for being small and pokey. This next property is quite the opposite. You’ll love this beautiful thatched 3 bedroom house with a 2 bedroom cottage and a swimming pool is designed for family life. Positioned on a slight incline, the house looks out across the stunning rift valley. Filled with character and only an hour away from Nairobi, we think this is the perfect family holiday home!

Life at the beach is always more relaxed. We think there is nothing more relaxing than a holiday in a cool, Swahili-style, beach-front house with a swimming pool! The single-story main house is designed beautifully with two spacious bedrooms situated in their own private wings, either side of the main sitting room. This is the perfect design for those who want a little bit of quiet. Guests can enjoy their own separate 3 bedroom cottage, nestled in the trees on the right of the house.

Finally, bringing us back home to Nairobi is this charming 2 bedroom garden cottage rental. Living in a one-story house in the city has the added benefit of making its inhabitants feel very safe and cosy, especially as there are a few other houses on the property. You’ll love the luscious garden and idyllic location in Hardy.

Get in touch with us for more houses and cottages! realestate@langatalink.com

 

 

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How did Hardy go from being wild and under-developed to a retail hot spot?

Owned by a man called Colonel Hardy during the early 20th century, the area was originally a Robusta coffee farm rivalling the neighbouring Karen Blixen Coffee Farm. Colonel Hardy owned all the water rights for that area, giving him a certain advantage over coffee production.

It seems like only yesterday that Hardy was known as the beautiful but slightly wild cousin of Karen. I am sure we can all remember the pokey convenience shop opposite the post office there, with its limited stock and limp vegetables. Maybe it is just my nostalgic memory, but they always seemed to have a great selection of ice cream and sweeties, however!

With its proximity to the main international schools in the area and its authentic Kenyan charm, the area was still incredibly popular with homeowners and renters alike but it lacked basic infrastructure and its own personal flair.
Shopping trips meant trecking to Karen Provision Stores (luckily then the traffic was better) and there was nowhere to meet friends for a drink or a nice meal nearby, making it quite a disjointed community.
This all changed as Karen became more and more developed, pushing up land prices. People started to move to the greener pastures of neighbouring Hardy.
There was now demand for a new shopping and office spaces. The gleaming new Hardy Post with its shopping centre, modern hair salon, dance studio, cafe and neighbouring office block, have given Hardy a well needed beating heart.
The area is quickly becoming one of the most sought-after places to live in its own right.
The residents of Hardy can now enjoy easy access to the 6 high profile schools within the area and with improved Langata Road, accessibility to the CBD and the Southern Bypass has made travel easier for all!
What draws you to Hardy?
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As a non-citizen, can I buy land in Kenya?

In Kenya, there is a lot of confusion about buying land as a non-citizen. Can you buy residential properties or land? If so for how long? Read on to find the answers.

The provisions of law regulating landholding by non-citizens are found in the Constitution of Kenya, the Lands Act (Act No. 6 of 2012) and the Land Registration Act (Act No. 3 of 2012). This states non-citizens can only own land for a maximum period of 99 years.

 

So yes, under the Kenyan Law non-citizens can own land under a 99-year leasehold tenure. This, therefore, means that if a foreigner purchases a property held under a freehold title, it will immediately revert to a long-term 99-year leasehold tenure. When a leasehold title expires, the Land Commission office shall offer the immediate owner the rights to be allocated the land provided it is not required by the national or the county government for public purposes.

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Keep your tenants happy and improve your rental the easy way

Rentals, langata link real estate, expert, adviceHeather Lawrence is the founder of not only Property Link Africa (now
Langata Link Real Estate) but also Langata Link Essentials and Langata Link Holidays.

Heather has returned to the company as a consultant for Langata Link Real Estate, bringing years of experience and knowledge about all things real estate.

Dear Heather,
I am a landlord with two houses on the property ready to rent BUT each time someone comes round, they always say they are very interested but never come back. The houses are small 2 and 3 bedroomed guesthouses. How can I rectify this? –
Billy, Nairobi

Heather: You have to ask the agent to enquire from the client, why they are not taking your house – is it the price? Is it too dark? is it too old-fashioned? is there anything else you would like us to add? Obviously, you will go the extra mile if you feel the client is worth it and you will get on well together.

 

I did that and the kitchen was the main problem as it was functional but not conducive to friends and family sitting around the table whilst cooking and they were not sure if you would allow them to do anything to improve it. They also felt they wanted more space like a store and a garage.

Heather: So for this, you as the Landlord must be very open when showing your house and say that you realise the client might want to change things and they were perfectly able to do this but just pass it by you first. However, if you feel you would like to do the changes, this may well be worth your while as you could charge a little extra rent for them to move in already done? A spot of paint – usually white – always gives a fresh new look. Putting up a store and garage is not an expensive exercise in Kenya and if this enhances your rent, you could do this yourself. Even if they left, the rent achieved would be more than the initially requested one. If it were the price that was causing the problem, you should have another conversation with your agent and see what he/she suggests.