Why a Land Mutation is important when you Buy Property in Kenya
Land mutation is a common term that you will come across if you are into land investment. In simple terms, this is a process through which the ownership of a title deed is changed from one person to another. This process enables the new property owner to acquire the title under their name. Land mutation has many benefits, as we will see in this article.
Guide to Land Mutation Process in Kenya
- The land buyer applies for the mutation form from a licensed land surveyor. The forms are available at Survey of Kenya. In this application form, you are supposed to fill in your personal details, property location, registration date, and type of transfer (you must highlight whether the transfer is a gift or deed).
- Payment of fees through demand draft. The cost varies on the local governments of the area where the land is.
- Attachment of the following document after payment. They should be attached to the mutation form.:
- A copy of the title deed
- Indemnity bond
- The current property tax receipt
- A death certificate in case it is a case of inheritance or will
- Processing of the application. This is done after the revenue inspector verifies all the documents that you have submitted. Sometimes, the officer must inspect the land before processing your application. Once the application is processed, you will be given a mutation certificate.
Types of Land Mutations
There are only two mutation types in Kenya, and here is a brief discussion of each.
- Mutation of agricultural lands – It is the type of mutation done on land primarily used for agriculture. It enables an easy transfer of the land title to a new owner.
- Mutation for non-agricultural land- This mutation covers non-agricultural lands used for building flats, development of commercial plots, and other activities unrelated to agriculture.
What is the Importance of Land Mutation
A land mutation is very important for the following reasons;
- It is evidence of amalgamation or subdivision of land.
- You get the land or property recorded in your name in the land registry through mutation.
- The land mutation documents enable the government to collect taxes from landowners accurately and ensure they meet their tax payment obligations.
- Mutation also helps rectify errors in land records by providing an accurate and current land/property ownership status.
- It is a tangible proof of land/property ownership, just like a title deed. This helps greatly in case land issues arise.
- In the case of a land transfer, the mutation certificate comes in as authentic evidence of a successful transfer from one individual to another, ensuring a recognized transfer of ownership.
When is Land Mutation Required
There are three instances where landowners require mutation in Kenya, and here is a mention of them:
- During land inheritance- If the owner of the land is deceased, and you need to inherit the land as the rightful heir, you must first do a land mutation. This is the only way you can get the ownership of the land transferred to you.
- When buying land- mutation is part of purchasing land in Kenya. You must have a mutation form to transfer ownership.
- Gift Deed-The process of mutation is also a must if you want to gift someone your land.
How Long Does Land Mutation Take In Kenya
Ideally, the whole process should take 6 months. This time allows the land registrar’s office to check for any wrongful transaction on the land. However, the time may vary on other issues, such as land cases. If the land has contention issues, you may have to wait longer.
Is Land Mutation Same as Land Registration?
There is a difference between the two processes. In land registration, a legal transfer of title deed is done from the seller to the buyer. On the other hand, land mutation comes after the land registration process, which involves changing the title deed ownership.
I believe that this article has been insightful, and you now understand everything about land mutation. However, we advise you to consult a professional land surveyor before starting this process. For more insights we encourage you to keep reading other blogs by Denvers.