Build a house for Sh850,000

wheat husks house

The panels made from compressed wheat husks

Thanks to International Green Structures (IGS), a US property firm, it is now possible to build a two-bedroom home in Kenya for slightly over Sh850,000.

IGS has introduced into the local market a Sh851,400 house built using panels made from compressed wheat husks, targeting low-income earners.

The two-bedroom house that measures 43 square metres comes with a sitting room, kitchen, bathroom and toilet. A larger unit of 46 square metres is selling at Sh910,800 while one of 64 square metres goes for Sh1.2 million.

The firm, which is based in Maryland, US, plans to build houses from panels made from husks and metal frames in what will cut construction time and costs by 30 per cent.

“We are targeting to provide building solutions just under Sh9,000 per square metre by allowing construction companies and developers to culturally adapt the IGS for Kenyans in the communities where they live,” said IGS chief executive Mike McCarthy.

The company that has had a presence in Kenya for over a year says it has received 3,400 orders from developers and will open a Sh1.3 billion panel plant in Thika to meet the rising demand for low cost housing.

“There is an overwhelming demand for housing in Kenya and limited supply in the middle and lower market segment giving IGS optimism of great success,” said IGS Kenya Ltd CEO Julius Nyoike.

IGS structures are pre-designed and factory-made, allowing them to be shipped easily to the construction site for assembly in a matter of days using local labour.

This technology has been used extensively in large-scale housing project in Egypt, Morocco and South Africa.

Market players reckon that new construction technologies may be the way to go for Kenya’s growing housing sector, particularly due to their ability to cut building costs while reducing construction time.

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