The 2005 Homes Expo was held at Sarit Centre over the weekend. Various financial institutions were represented at the fair all offering various mortgage products. While HFCK and Savings & Loan (KCB) have been in the mortgage business for years, low interest rates beginning in 2003 caused Barclays, Standard Chartered and other banks to enter this market.
Others mortgage players not represented at the fair include: Credit Unions, East Africa Building Society (about to merge with Akiba Bank), Commercial Bank of Africa, I&M Bank and NIC Bank.
Some general facts
- For comparison purposes, I used a typical 6 million shilling ($75,000) property such as a 3 bedroom flat in Kilimani or a 4 bedroom maisonette in South C
- The longer the mortgage period, the higher the interest rate
- While most loans are variable rates, recently some banks have introduced fixed-rate mortgages
- Banks finance less (i.e. higher down payment) if you don’t live in the property
- Banks finance less for properties out of major towns (or not at all)
Barclays will finance up to 85%, loan repayable over 15 years at a variable rate of 12.5%. You can use the facility to build new home, transfer your current mortgage, or borrow against your property (an equity release) to meet other financial obligations.
To buy your 6 million home, your down payment is 900,000 ($11,250) and Barclays will finance 5.1 million ($63,750). Annual repayments on the 5.1 million will range from 445,000 ($5,600) in year 1 and reduce to 62,000 ($775) in year 15.
Housing Finance Company of Kenya (HFCK)
Has a 3-plan mortgage scheme;
(1) Startup Plan mortgage: 10 to 15 year mortgage designed for 1st time borrowers
(2) House Plan mortgage: 5 to 10 year mortgage – for those who want to repay mortgage faster e.g. are closer to retirement
(3) Ace Plan mortgage: less than 5 years for those who have higher disposable incomes or are making investments
You can use HFCK loans for owner-occupied (you live there), investment residential (you don’t live there) equity release, construction loans & residential plots (maximum of 2 years for development to begin) purposes. Generally they finance up to 80% if you live there, 70% if you don’t.
- Interest rate is what gets some HFCK borrower into trouble. Their current base rate is 13.75 p.a. and in the StartUp Plan (for the 6 million shilling house) you pay Base +4% p.a. If you prove to be a good with your repayments, you get a discount of 1% p.a., but if you fall behind on repayments, you arrears attract an interest rate of base +5%.
- Closing costs are at least 5% of market value (including 4% stamp duty, 1% commitment fee, and other fees)
- Your 6 million house for 1st time borrowers falls into the Start up mortgage and after a down payment of 1.2 million ($15,000), HFCK will finance 4.8 million ($60,000)
KCB through their subsidiary “Savings & Loan Kenya Ltd.”
- Loans are charged 12.5% for up to 15 years for residential house or flats, and 12% for estate development.
- They finance up to 80% of property in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Nakuru and Thika and only 70% if it is a property you’re not living in or are located in another town (i.e. you increase your down payment from 20% to 30%)
- Their loans are available to any borrower with repayment ability, but for salaried people the loan maximum is such that repayments must not exceed more than 2/3 of your net monthly salary
- Typical fees include: appraisal fee (1%), ledger fees 350 shillings/month, legal fees, stamp duty (4%), registration fee (0.2%)
- Typical repayment: To buy your 6 million shilling house, your down payment is 1.2 million ($15,000) and KCB will finance the remaining 80% (4.8 million $60,000). Repayment in year 1 will be about 450,000 (5,625) in year 1, and reduce to 70,000 ($875) in year 15
With Stanchart, you can build new home, transfer your current mortgage or borrow against your property (an equity release) to meet other financial obligations and the Bank says that loans are approved within 48 hours.
- This is at a fixed interest rate for up to 10 years is 14.5%, up to 15 years is 15.5%, and they finance up to 85% of property financed i.e. you put 15% down payment
- To buy your 6 million home, down payment is 900,000 ($11,250) and Stanchart will finance 5.1 million ($63,750) – and over the 15 years, repayments on the 5.1 million loan will be 72,000 per month.
- They also have a variable rate mortgage, which will result in monthly repayments of about 68,000 per month over 15 years to but your 6 million shilling home.