May 21, 2023

Real Estate Agency in times of Challenges, How Rubrina Properties is Doing it Differently

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Kenya’s Real Estate sector is on a constant positive trajectory with statistics indicating that the sector contributed about 15 per cent of Kenya’s gross domestic product in 2022. A significant percentage of investments in the real estate sector comes from the diaspora – through diaspora remittances.

In 2022, the Central Bank of Kenya reported that Kenyans in the diaspora sent home about 400 billion shillings, with 100 billion shillings going into the real estate sector. It is this background that has led to the rise of real estate agencies – which look to meet the growing demand and bridge the gap between property developers and potential buyers, home and abroad.

One such real estate agency is Rubrina Properties, a Company founded by Ruth Mbula, a business management professional turned realtor who has been in the industry for the last five years. Ms. Mbula began her journey in the real estate sector as an employee of one of the many real estate Company in Kenya. Ruth says she then decided to go alone, taking the route of entrepreneurship, a venture into murky waters that has taught her many life and business lessons. She has cut her niche.

“It is been an amazing journey interacting with investors and offering investment solutions. I am pushing for affordable housing in Kenyan as this is in line with the Governments initiative of Affordable Homes,” says Ruth in a recent interview the Standard Digital.

As a young Chief Executive Officer (in her early 30s), Ms. Mbula says she has learnt to embrace values that have been key to her business taking off and serving her clients at the points of their need.

“One thing that I have learnt is that investors only want a trustworthy person that they can trust and deal with. If you are truthful to yourself then you are successful as integrity, reputation, impact, influence and consistency is everything in business,” she says.

Mbula’s entry into the business came at a time when the industry is marred with integrity issues – with many unsuspecting investors losing their hard-earned money in the hands of unscrupulous real estate agents that continue to swindle them. Such occurrences have been on the rise, majorly affecting Kenyans in the diaspora. This has impacted even genuine agencies which now have to work harder to retain customer confidence. So, how is Rubrina Properties coping with this?

“It is true that some developers are not genuine and do not offer exactly what they advertise and this has made investors or buyers become more cautious when engaging in real estate transactions,” says the young CEO.

Adding that, “I always encourage buyers to do proper due diligence before purchasing a property. This includes engaging a legal team to handle legal affairs and as well as checking the track record of the developer.”

The fraudulent schemes by a few dishonest agencies have pushed Companies like Rubrina Properties to go an extra mile to remain relevant, employing strategic marketing models that would cement their relationships with existing and potential clients.

“Our business model is very unique as we offer best customer service experience ever that investors cannot get elsewhere. This is from the point of engaging us, to site visits, closing sale and even after sale service. Our clients are the happiest,” she explains.

“We believe in creativity and innovation and that’s why we have included new products in our basket which includes fully fitted Italian kitchens which come with unique, high quality and durable appliances and accessories. We are global as our clients come from all parts of the world and you will be surprised to note that we are 24 hours Real Estate Company as we are reachable 24 hours.”

With a growth rate of over six per cent in the first quarter of 2022, catapulted by other factors such as rapid urbanization and investments by the national government, Kenya’s real estate sector is expected to grow exponentially, going into the future. This projected growth is gives hope to Ruth Mbula and her Company that despite the challenges in the sector, which she insists must be addressed, more investors will keep looking for opportunities.

“Real estate drives the economy and is the safest investment ever as this includes a tangible asset that is appreciating in value and the same time giving you a return on investment. Rubrina Properties is going to be the biggest real estate developer in the country because we have interacted with investors and buyers and we understand exactly what the market requires.”

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