You have probably come across stories of Kenyans in diaspora (or summer bunnies as you like to call them) sending money to friends or family to invest, only to jet back home to zero investment, millions of excuses and a very plump cousin.
Well, I have heard quite a number of those and to say I now have serious trust issues would be a massive understatement.
Just the other day my neighbour came back home from the US and quite literally lost his mind. Completely bananas.
His mother, believe it or not, would take photos of some random construction site. She would then share that and lie that everything was running smoothly... Tupo site, she said.
Based on the photos, he estimated that his dream house would be ready just in time for Christmas.
Owe unto him when he came back home and found that it was all a ploy.
So when my cousin who leaves in Australia asked for tips on how she can invest back home, I immediately told her the story and said, 'with the current economic times, I would advise you not to tempt even the born again'
In a bid to save her from falling for the 'tupo site' prank, I decided to do some digging on some of the clever ways the Kenyans in diaspora can invest back home.
It is here that I came across Co-operative Bank's online facility where Kenyans abroad can create an account, save money, buy property and/or invest in SMEs.
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Whether land or residential areas, the bank does its due diligence, involving its lawyers, to ensure that the property has proper documents.
Additionally, the site offers an array of property which is tailored to suit individual needs.
For example, for residential houses, there are those that are located on the outskirts of Kenya's capital, Nairobi, or those in quieter regions.
Co-operative Bank also offers land deals as well as fully furnished homes and offices.
In terms of business investments, the bank has offered loans to entrepreneurs interested in boosting their Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
Weeks after recommending the service, my cousin has commenced on her first house (she calls it her summer house), I even went to the site myself and confirmed that work was in progress and for sure "mafundi wako site."
-Written by Stephanie Wangari