Harare: house ownership remains a dream for urban poor


OWNING a house in Harare remains a pipe dream for thousands of desperate home-seekers who form the bulk of the capital city’s estimated four million residents as property prices were way above average-earners’ reach.


According to the Harare City Council, more than 500 000 people are on the housing waiting list, while many more are set to join. Most of those on the housing list have, however, complained about the failure by council to provide land for new housing development.

A snap survey by NewsDay yesterday showed that one would need more than $5 000 to secure a residential stand in the high density suburb for council stands, while $10 000 would suffice if an estate agent was involved in the same area.

A house in Glen View, Glen Norah, Budiriro and other high-density areas costs no less than $20 000 on average.

In Glen View, a six-roomed house goes for $21 000, while in Glen Norah A, a four-bedroomed house was going for $42 000.

For one to own a house in Crowborough, at least $40 000 could be needed while four-roomed houses in Dzivarasekwa cost an average of $45 000.

Estate agents were also demanding a deposit of between $3 000 to $6 500 for a stand to call home.

“After getting a stand, by paying a deposit of between $3 000 to $6 500, you would need more money to develop that stand so, you need to have a high paying job to achieve all that. You will also need to pay between $250 — $300 a month for five to 10 years,” a property dealer with an estate agent said.

Council chairperson for the housing and community development committee, Charles Nyatsuro said that the local authority was trying to address the housing crisis and most of its beneficiaries were housing co-operatives.

“For a 300sqm stand, one needs about $3000 depending on whether the area is serviced or not. We gave out a number of stands through co-operatives that are doing well,” Nyatsuro said.


  1. A simple comparative analysis shows yo valuation estimates to be way of the mark on houses. Let me give yu the true value estimates for complete house above which u will be a fool to pay. Glennorah, Glenview, Budiriro, kuwadzana part Highfield on 200-300sqm US 25-45k Cession/Deed. Part highfield Mbare, Mufakose, Dz core houses on semi detached on 150-250sqm US15-22k. Mabvuku Tafara core houses US 12 -20k cession /deed. Estate agents actually reduce prices because they don’t give a hoot what u get so long his 5%. If he outprices no fool will even call on his advert. If u think of buying then put on a hardhat because its very likely an attempt will be made on u. Council has no stands to sell yo best bet is in private developments or cooperatives and bingo!

  2. Exacerbated by confusion of land ownership in Harare. Anyone who thinks is important sells land to unsuspecting urban poor who after building some sort of dwellings they are declared illegal

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