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Harare Rentals Shoot Up As Bogus Estate Agents Rip-Off Tenants

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By Staff Reporter


A LEADING investment company director has said houses for rental in urban areas, especially Harare are now very expensive to lease and this will adversely affect economic growth and stability.

Noel Mavura, the founder of an investment firm, African Investment Hub, in a statement Friday, urged the Estate Agents Council of Zimbabwe (EACZ) to a play a leading role in protecting tenants from unscrupulous landlords and bogus agents.

“We need to come up with realistic valuation of rentals while contemplating on the vitally important factors. A systematic approach must be implemented especially in Harare, whereby, the government and the relevant stakeholders ought to set rental benchmarks and formulae,” he said.

“The rentals prices are increasing every month due to the greediness by landlords and lack of principles to be adhered”.

Below is Mavura’s full statement:

The United Nations predicts that by 2050, at least 70% of the population in Africa will be living in urban areas hence there will be many challenges, risks as well as opportunities which comes with the urbanisation.

All of a sudden the rentals in urban areas particularly in Harare have become a nightmare. There is an urgent need for the landlords to charge affordable rentals as this will culminate to the positive development in economic growth and stability.

The Estate Agents Council of Zimbabwe should play a fundamental obligation to protect the citizens from unscrupulous landlords and bogus agents who are robbing people daily.

We need to come up with realistic valuation of rentals while contemplating on the vitally important factors. A systematic approach must be implemented especially in Harare, whereby, the government and the relevant stakeholders ought to set rental benchmarks and formulae.

The rental prices are increasing every month due to the greediness by landlords and lack of principles to be adhered.

Be that as it may, this exponentially rise in rentals is not triggered by the shortage of the houses in Harare since many people are building their own homes.

Most people are in dire situation because their disposable incomes are being heavily eroded by the rentals and the cost of living is escalating on monthly basis.

Let’s have a collective engagement and consider the Rent Act in Zimbabwe.

Thousands and thousands of people are losing their hard-earned incomes through illegal agents who are charging exorbitant prices of US$50 before one views a property and you will surely have the shock of your life to discover a fowl run instead of a habitable house. Eventually, the search will end in vain and agony.

In some of the areas around Harare, the agents are teaming up with landlords and developing a strong rapport to an extent of obtaining kickbacks without the knowledge of the tenant.

For instance, a full house in Southerton, Harare might cost an average price of US$300, but the agent tops up another US$100 which equates to US$400 per month. This unregistered agent will get US$100usd per month without the sweaty equity.

The registered estate agents have been cornered by the unlicensed agents and the market is now congested. Innovative young entrepreneurs need to think outside the box and bring up a sophisticated and disruptive system proposition which tracks illegal real estate agents to protect the local property rental market.

Unaccounted real estate fraud cases are being reported every day to the police across Harare, other cities and towns.

I am just a microphone of the innocent people who are wailing and grieving without consolation. It is my utmost request for the relevant stakeholders to take some steps toward the addressing of these problems.

This article was prepared by Noel Mavura. He is the founder of an investment firm called Africa Investors Hub, which funds innovative entrepreneurs. He can be contacted on the following:  

Email: noel@investorshub.co.zw 

Contact Number: +442080898129