Challenges facing Homeownership among Women in Kenya. A case study of Kikuyu town.

Women form majority of the population in Kenya (52%) and play an active role in the
development of the society, although Kenya remains a very patriarchal society, and the
status of women remains relatively low with inequalities and inequities prevailing in
many aspects of life. Women continue to be marginalized and discriminated against in
almost all aspects of their lives, a situation which is reinforced by the existing laws
and policies, as well as the socio-cultural factors. Kenya’s current system of property,
land access and ownership discriminates against women, creating social inequality and
serious economic disadvantages notwithstanding that Land and housing are central
issues in developing economies. Women’s access to, ownership of and control over
land is a clear indication of failure in policy and legislative framework to address
systematic violation of a basic human right of the majority of the country’s citizens.
Traditional and cultural practices tend to uphold and perpetuate the practices which in
effect condemn women as second class citizens.
This study identified home ownership among women in Kenya and assessed whether
there has been a significant change. Home ownership is promoted as a means of
ensuring financial security yet women face particular challenges in achieving it. This
study showed the extent to which female home ownership rates and propensity to
purchase are affected by finances, cultural beliefs and education/awareness especially
on legal rights.
The study also shows that lack of education and awareness among majority of women,
inadequate financial resources and discriminative cultural practices largely and jointly
affects women rate of homeownership. This research is important to the National and
County governments as they can get valuable information necessary in formulation of
policies intended for the empowerment of women home ownership. The study also
adds to the existing literature hence other researchers can also get information they
may require while studying on a related theme.