Data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) shows that the value of building plans approved in the first five months of 2013 rose 70.1 per cent to Sh40 billion from Sh23.5 billion in the same period last year.
From January to May, production of iron sheets rose 6.6 percent (a three-year high) to 90, 641 tonnes from 84,994 tonnes produced over a similar period in 2012. This was a 2.6 per cent growth over the 88,365 tonnes produced in the first five months of 2011.
The high demand for homes comes at a time confidence in non-residential housing is waning. According to the KNBS data, the value of non-residential building plans approved in the first five months of 2013 fell 5.4 per cent to Sh37.8 billion from Sh39.9 billion in the same period last year.
Cement consumption rose 0.17 per cent to 1.55 million tonnes from 1.54 million tonnes over the period last year. However, this was 2.7 per cent lower than the 1.59 million tonnes consumed in a similar period last year.