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Why more uneducated Kenyans own houses than graduates - KNBS report

The KNBS survey also highlighted other disparities in land ownership in Kenya

A file photo of a house in Kenya

A recent survey in Kenya has revealed a surprising trend in home ownership - more uneducated men own houses than those who have attended middle-level colleges and universities.

The Demographic and Health Survey 2022, released by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) on Tuesday, January 17, shows that 46.7% of men who own a house have no formal education, compared to 32.2% of men who have gone beyond secondary school.

Similarly, the survey indicated that 10% of female homeowners have no formal education, compared to 3% who have attended tertiary-level institutions.

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The data suggests that this trend could be a reflection of the rural-urban migration patterns in Kenya, where educated individuals tend to migrate to urban areas in search of employment.

Many of those who move to urban areas end up renting or being unable to afford to buy/build homes.

Land prices in urban areas tend to be higher compared to rural areas. This is due to factors such as proximity to amenities, employment opportunities, and overall demand for land.

Meanwhile, more Kenyans in rural areas can build their own homes.

Additionally, the survey found that 20% of uneducated men jointly own a house with a wife or spouse, compared to 36.3% of their female counterparts.

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Overall, the survey revealed that 45% of men aged between 15 and 49 years own a house, compared to only 33% of women in the same age bracket.

This disparity is particularly pronounced between rural and urban areas, with 44% of rural women owning houses compared to 17% of urban women.

The survey, which is released every five years, also highlighted other disparities in land ownership in Kenya.

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For example, despite constitutional provisions giving women equal rights to land ownership as men, traditional societal norms often make it difficult for women to secure land rights except through their husbands.

Overall, the survey's findings paint a complex picture of home ownership in Kenya and highlight the ongoing challenges facing women and the educated population in securing property rights.

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