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A Lawyer’s View: Steps in Conducting Due Diligence in Land Purchase

A Lawyer’s View: Steps in Conducting Due Diligence in Land Purchase

  1. Title Search: Begin by verifying the land’s title deed at the Ministry of Lands. This confirms the current owner, land size, and any restrictions or encumbrances.
  2. Physical Inspection: Visit the property to confirm its existence and the accuracy of its details, such as boundaries, land size, and topography.
  3. Land History: Investigate the land’s history, including any past transactions, disputes, or subdivisions. This can be done by examining land records and speaking to neighbouring landowners.
  4. Land Ownership: Ensure that the person selling the land is the legal owner, and there are no disputes or third-party claims.
  5. Liabilities and Debts: Check if the land has any unpaid rates, taxes, or mortgages. These can affect your ownership rights and incur additional costs.
  6. Survey and Beacon Information: Review the land survey and beacon information to confirm that the property’s boundaries are accurate.
  7. Environmental Compliance: Investigate whether the land is compliant with environmental regulations and zoning requirements. This is crucial for future land use.
  8. Community and Neighbors: Interact with the local community and neighboring landowners to gain insights into the land’s history and any potential issues.
  9. Legal Documents: Consult a legal expert to review all documents, contracts, and agreements related to the land purchase.
  10. Expert Assistance: Seek the assistance of professionals, such as land surveyors, real estate agents, and lawyers, to ensure that all aspects of due diligence are properly conducted.

Conducting due diligence in land purchase is a comprehensive process that demands thorough research, attention to detail, and professional guidance. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can safeguard your investment and avoid potential legal disputes or financial losses in Kenya’s intricate land market. Remember that due diligence is not an option but a necessity when purchasing land, as it ensures that you acquire property with clear legal status and market value.


The provision of general advice in this document does not create an advocate-client relationship with any reader. This article’s information, content, and material are provided solely for general informational purposes. Readers of this article should contact us on 0733610961 or email at info@wjmaxwell.co.ke if they need legal advice on any specific legal issue.

Max Wafula Esq is a Kenyan lawyer and works at W.J. Maxwell & Associate Advocates.

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