The 7 Most Promising Cities for Real Estate Investment in Africa

Once upon a time, African real estate was not considered much of an investment. Instead, it was often looked at as a way to gain land for personal use and as a form of prestige. But this perception has been changing.

Real estate is where some of the more attractive returns are being made. Many African cities have proven to be profitable markets for investors.

The continent has one of the fastest-growing populations in the world. These numbers are set to double by 2050, increasing the demand for housing on the continent. As such, there is a need for massive developments to meet this need.

Ever wonder what the hottest real estate markets in Africa are? Knowing which cities offer the best opportunities is essential for investing in African real estate.

Here are Africa’s Top Real Estate Cities

1. Nairobi, Kenya

Nairobi-Kenya. Source: Pinterest

Nairobi is the capital city of Kenya. It has long been a hub for expatriates in East and Central Africa.

Economy of Nairobi

The city is well-known for its thriving economy and is home to Kenya’s most important industrial centre. Many of East Africa’s manufactured products originate here. These include; Clothing, textiles, building materials, processed foods, beverages, and cigarettes.

Several international corporations have a presence in and around Nairobi. These include; Goodyear, General Motors, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Coca-Cola, the United Nations and more.

Nairobi’s Tourism Sector

Nairobi is unique because it is the only city in the world with a national park.

Nairobi has a large tourist industry, both a tourist destination and a business hub. The dynamic tourism industry calls for the construction of hotels for tourists.

Nairobi’s Real Estate Market

Kenya has an annual housing demand of 250,000 units with an estimated supply of only 50,000 units per year. This has resulted in a housing deficit of 2 million units.

The average cost of residential renting is 1650 USD as of March 2023. According to the Cytonn Report Q1 2023, residential rental yields in Nairobi are at an average of 6.1%, with commercial rental yields averaging 7.6%.

The real estate sector’s performance has improved and stabilised since the 2020 pandemic. Some key factors impacting this growth include Government and private initiatives like the affordable housing program (AHP) and affordable mortgages to increase homeownership, Infrastructure developments like the recently completed Nairobi Expressway, and the rebound of the tourism sector post-2020 pandemic.

The city’s most prominent real estate developers are building luxury towers for office space. As well as the construction of high-rise apartments and multi-million dollar gated communities.

Nairobi Population & Housing Statistics

Nairobi Population (2019)


Population Growth Rate (2021)


Residential Rental Yield
(Q1. 2023)


Commercial Rental Yield
(Q1. 2023)


For more information, visit the Kenya Investment Guide.

2. Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town-South Africa
Cape Town-South Africa

This beautiful coastal city has long been a favourite among investors. This is due to its strong economy and tourism industry.

The city’s property market is great for both local and international investors. It is one of the most stable residential markets in the country. This is due to its prime central location and bustling cosmopolitan culture.

Cape Town Economy

Cape Town is the economic hub of the Western Cape province. It accounts for roughly 14% of South Africa’s GDP, with a GDP of 32% higher than the national average. This is due to the growth of economic sectors such as agriculture and tourism.

The province is also a centre of energy development for the country. The existing Koeberg nuclear power station provides energy for the Western Cape’s needs.

Living in Cape Town opens up a world of job possibilities that aren’t available elsewhere. Several multinational companies have set up headquarters in this lovely seaside metropolis. These include; Amazon, Woolworths Holdings Limited, Naspers, IBM, and Hisense.

Cape Town Real Estate

Furthermore, Cape Town is ideal for families looking to settle. It offers several educational alternatives. In the most exclusive sections of Cape Town, the buoyant property market focuses on prime luxury penthouses and mansions.

Today, the estimated housing deficit is over 300,000 units in Cape Town.

The average cost of renting in Cape Town ranges from $600 for a one-bedroom apartment. In contrast, a 3-bedroom apartment could cost about $1200.

South African house prices have been relatively stable, with homeownership at around 60% of the population. The average national price for an entry-level home (80–140 sqm) is around $62,491. While an average medium-sized house currently costs around $83,699.

Cape Town Population & Housing Statistics

Cape Town Population (2021)


Population Growth Rate (2021)


Residential Rental Yield


Commercial Rental Yield


For more information, visit the South Africa Investment Guide.

3. Casablanca, Morocco

Casablanca-Morocco. Source:

Casablanca is a city on the Atlantic coast at the mouth of the river basin, known for its charming beauty. Casablanca has a population of 3.79 million and a growth rate of 1.1%.

It has been a significant industrial, commercial, and financial centre throughout history. Casablanca is a land of opportunities due to several international firms investing in Morocco. These include; Unilever, Dell Technologies, Deloitte, IBM, and Huawei Technologies.

It is also the third most popular tourist destination in Morocco. The 360 km coastline is ideal for summer visitors who want to enjoy the superb beaches.

Morocco’s largest city contributes about 32% to the country’s GDP. The region benefits from different sectors that contribute to its growth. These include; Industry, services, agriculture, construction, tourism, real estate, crafts, sustainable development, and fishing.

Morocco offers excellent incentives for visitors. Most people who enter Morocco may do so without a visa. If their passport has at least six months of validity, they may stay for as long as 90 days. Another benefit of living in Casablanca is its low cost of living compared to other metropolitan areas.

Casablanca Town Population & Housing Statistics

Casablanca Population (2021)


Population Growth Rate (2021)


Residential Rental Yield


Commercial Rental Yield


Many real estate investors are flocking to Morocco. As the country’s economy flourishes, the need for higher-quality housing continues to grow. But, the estimated housing deficit stands at 400,000 units today.

This is due to a shortage in the supply of social housing by the government and the high cost of housing. This has led to a housing gap between what is provided and what households can afford.

For more information, visit the Morocco Investment Guide.

4. Lagos, Nigeria

Lagos City.

Lagos has one of the most rapid growth rates in Africa. It is still one of Africa’s most populous cities, with a population of about 14.8 million and a 3.44% growth rate. Lagos is home to a rich culture and lively nightlife.

This is one of the few African cities with an influx of interest from overseas investors. Many multinational companies are set up in Nigeria, providing opportunities to many Nigerians. These include; Cadbury, Google, Guinness Breweries Limited, Coca-Cola, Price Waterhouse Cooper (PWC) and more.

Lagos Port, located on the southwest coast of Nigeria, handles 80% of the country’s goods.

Nigeria’s housing deficit continues to grow and is estimated at 17 million. This has led to a constant need for quality, low to medium-cost housing and commercial space.

The average cost of renting in this bustling city is $1094. Rental yields are pretty good, at an average of 8.5%.

The average price of houses for sale in Lagos is $207,570. The most expensive house costs $3.41 million, while the cheapest costs $23,443. There are 280,855 listings and 34,678 available houses for sale in Lagos, Nigeria.

Lagos Population & Housing Statistics

Lagos Population (2021)


Population Growth Rate (2021)


Residential Rental Yield


Commercial Rental Yield


5. Kigali, Rwanda

Kigali City Main Roundabout – Rwanda

Rwanda’s political and economic stability and high rental yields are major reasons to invest in this real estate market. The country has seen immense growth in recent years.

The population boom, high employment rate and booming construction industry have made it a promising investment option. Many employment opportunities have been made available in the country’s capital thanks to the number of multinational companies present. Some include; Andela, Mariott International, Goldman Sachs, KPMG and more.

Kigali is Rwanda’s economic and financial hub, serving as the country’s main port of entry and largest business centre. The city’s largest employment sector is agriculture, fishing and forestry, representing 24 per cent of the workforce.

The city of Kigali officially launched the 2050 Master Plan. This Master Plan focuses on mixed-use developments in the City centre. Beyond the Central Business District, the city will also encourage private developers and building owners to consider regenerating their existing buildings, especially the older ones.

Kigali Population & Housing Statistics

Kigali Population (2021)


Population Growth Rate (2021)


Residential Rental Yield


Commercial Rental Yield


Kigali’s population is 1.16 million today, with a 3.34% growth rate. According to the Affordable Housing Investment Summit, an estimated 344,000 new homes will be needed in Kigali by 2022. These will house up to 70 per cent of residents living in informal settlements.

This is propelling the growth of low to medium-priced housing in Kigali. The average cost of renting in Kigali is $309. The gross rental yields are at an average of 8.6%.

6. Luanda, Angola

Luanda - Angola
Luanda – Angola. Source: VCG

It is one of the wealthiest cities in Africa. And the cost of living is relatively high. It ranks as the most expensive city in the world according to Mercer’s Annual Cost of Living Index.

As of 2021, 8.61 million people live in the country’s capital, Angola’s industrial, cultural and urban centre. The city has a population growth rate of 3.63%.

Luanda provides immense opportunities due to the number of global corporations established in this city. Some include; Microsoft, Samsung Electronics, IBM, Total Energies and more.

According to Britannica, Luanda is an industrial centre that manufactures beverages, automotive products, and cement. It also produces agricultural products such as; coffee, cotton, sugarcane, oilseeds, palm oil and kernels; cattle raising is locally significant.

Luanda is served by an international airport and the Luanda Railway, which has its eastern terminus in Malanje.

There is still, however, a shortage of affordable housing that investors can tap into. The large inflow of foreign direct investment in recent years is also a driving force in the real estate sector.

The Housing Promotion Fund (FFH), which is responsible for the majority of state-built housing (70 per cent) under the National Town Planning and Housing Program (PNUL), estimates that the backlog of housing construction is more than 1.7 million in the country.

And that around a third of the population does not have adequate housing. To compensate for this deficit, the government has opened the national housing market to Chinese, Israeli and Portuguese developers to produce large-scale housing.

The average price for a home here has doubled since 2014, and luxury housing complexes are sprouting up everywhere. With an economy highly reliant on oil production, there is a rising need for housing space. Gross rental yields are good at an average of 13%.

The average rent for an apartment in Angola is $816. The cost of rent varies depending on several factors, including location, size, and quality.

Luanda Population & Housing Statistics

Luanda Population (2021)


Population Growth Rate (2021)


Residential Rental Yield


Commercial Rental Yield


7. Accra, Ghana

Accra - Ghana
Accra – Ghana. Source: Nana Yaw Films

Accra is the largest city in Ghana, with a population of 2.56 million and a population growth rate of 1.71%. Although it has experienced some slowdowns over the past year, investors are still enthusiastic about its growth prospects. Famous for being politically stable with great cultural diversity and unique slave history, Accra is an attractive international destination.

Accra has a fast-growing economy and is one of the top cities to look out for. It has a vibrant labour force that acquires opportunities from the many global companies established over the years. These include; Coca-Cola, Olam Limited, Unilever, Total Petroleum Limited, Tullow Oil and more.

With its growing economic prospects, Accra’s real estate market is also rapidly expanding, and investors are noting. In fact, this was one of the cities that made it to New World Wealth’s Africa chart of where millionaires were moving from 2008-2014.

Ghana’s capital Accra has an estimated deficit of 300,000 housing units. This is despite a construction boom in the city centre.

The prime residential property market has also shown a steady increase in value. The rental yields are good at an average of 7.5%. The average price of houses for sale is $75,170.

The average price of apartments for rent in Accra is $163 per month. The most expensive apartment costs $49,000 monthly, while the cheapest costs $24. According to the Ghana Property Centre, there are 1,970 listings and 1,261 available apartments for rent in Accra, Ghana.

Accra Population & Housing Statistics

Accra Population (2021)


Population Growth Rate (2021)


Residential Rental Yield


Commercial Rental Yield


For more information, visit the Ghana Investment Guide

Final Thoughts

The promise of African real estate is in the numbers. The continent offers a young, vibrant labour force that will continue to boost its economy and the real estate sector in the coming years. These emerging economies are also rich in resources, attracting foreign investors looking to cash in on the available opportunities.

With an increase in urbanization, there is a surge for safe housing in these major cities, an opportunity being addressed through proper planning and awareness. The boom in the African real estate sector is here, but it can be taken to even greater heights with the right investment strategies.

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