The order issued last week by the Nairobi County government for buildings to be repainted within a month is a double edged sword for landlords according to a leading property manager.
In a notice issued on April 13, Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero directed that all building owners in the city repaint them within 30 days.
Kidero said that the directive is in line with the city's by-laws which stipulate that every building in the city must be painted and decorated at least once every two years and must remain so without any defacing.
"The County government has therefore put building owners in Nairobi on notice to abide by this directive. After its expiry my officers will take the necessary action to ensure compliance. ”
Real estate company Hass Consult's marketing manager Sakina Hassanali said while repainting buildings increases their value and rental income for landlords, it is not practical and cost effective to repaint every two years given the developments in the paint sector.
"The initiative to repaint all buildings every two years is not cost effective for the owners as the minimum warranty period for external paint is 5 years from reliable dealers such as Duracoat and Crown Paints. The type of paint that you use also determines the life for example ruff and tuff paint from crown has a warranty of almost 10 years," Hassanali said.
The county government said inspections to check compliance on the repaint directive will be more emphasised within the Central Business District.
Hassanali said it is a good initiative that landlords repaint buildings as most of those in the CBD were run down. She advised landlords whose buildings have paints with a long warranty that "a good water blasting exercise will shine up the building giving it a brand new and clean look".
Knight Frank Kenya executive director Maina Mwangi said that landlords should not wait orders to repaint buildings as doing so regularly without any coercion would be beneficial to them.
"A more presentable building ensures that property owners and managers will get better tenants, and possibly higher rents, and attract more shoppers for the case of retail malls; thus translating into higher values. This is therefore a duty that should not have to await county directives as the accruing benefits are self-evident," said Maina.
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