Samburu women lead in home ownership
What you need to know:
- The Demographic and Health Survey 2022 released by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics recently shows that 61 per cent of Samburu women aged between 15-49 years own homes.
- Most women from Garissa, Wajir, Mandera Marsabit, Mombasa and Nairobi reported that they do not own a home.
Women in Samburu County are more likely to own their homes compared to other women in Kenya. Those from Garissa and Wajir are the least likely, a survey released by the government has shown.
The Demographic and Health Survey 2022 released by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) recently shows that 61 per cent of Samburu women aged between 15-49 years own homes either alone or jointly. They are followed by women from Narok (59.1 per cent), Kisii (56.6 per cent), Turkana (56.5 per cent) and Nyamira (49.8 per cent).
Conversely, most women from Garissa, Wajir, Mandera Marsabit, Mombasa and Nairobi reported that they do not own a home.
Access to land and property with secure tenure is considered central to women’s economic empowerment as it serves as a base for income as well as collateral for credit.
Additionally, the report says, ownership and control of land and other assets by women and men enhance their ability to access economic resources at the societal level and confer additional economic value, status, and bargaining power at the household level.
“For women in particular, ownership of assets may provide protection in case of marital dissolution or abandonment, positively influence their position in their homes, and decrease their vulnerability to various forms of violence or discrimination,” says the report.
The data also shows that women in rural areas are more likely to own their homes (44 per cent) compared to their urban counterparts (19 per cent). Another factor affecting home ownership, the report says, is age.
“House ownership increases with age and is highest among women age 45–49 (63 per cent),” the survey says.
Generally, most Kenyan women own a house either jointly with their husband and/or with someone else (28 per cent) while only a small fraction own it alone (5 per cent).
The data also shows that 10 per cent of female home owners have no formal education compared to 3 per cent that have gone up to tertiary level, a trend that is also mirrored in their male counterparts. This could be due to rural-urban migration patterns where people with the highest education move to urban areas in search of employment, thus end up renting or unable to afford homes while their counterparts in rural areas build their houses.
According to the 2019 Census report, 73.8 per cent of rural dwellings are made from mud, timber, iron sheets or other inferior materials as the main walling material, highlighting their inferior quality.
The Census report further shows most houses in rural homes have earth, sand or cow dung as the main flooring material.