1.What is Change of Use of Land?

Under the new Constitution of Kenya, 2010, the County Government is now vested with the authority to ensure that land owned by county residents is used for the purposes it has been intended for by the Director of Physical Planning established under the Physical Planning Act. This means that if you intend to buy agricultural land or single dweller and convert it into commercial use, you will be forced to seek approval for this kind of change of user of the land.

2.Physical Planner

The planner will prepare a change of user report:

  • To examine the compatibility of the proposed development with the development trend in the area.
  • To provide background information regarding the site area in reference to the physical setting, location and level of infrastructure and services
  • To evaluate the impact of the proposed development on the socio-economic and physical environments in the area.
  • To make appropriate recommendations in reference to the policies governing development and the level of compatibility of the development with the socio- economic environment and other land uses for consideration by the approving authorities


  • Purpose: Control of land use and development
  • Maximum Processing Time: 30 days
  • Validity: Indefinite
  • Clearance Type: Approval
  • Legal Basis: Physical Planning Act, Physical Planning Regulations
  • Annual Renewal: None


  • The process includes an advertisement, and recommendations from members of the public and line-ministries, which are obtained by the County Government. The application is often combined with one for a construction permit.
  • The process includes an advertisement, and recommendations from members of the public and line ministries, which are obtained by the County Government.
  • The investor, through a registered physical planner will make application for the change of user through filling in PPA 1 form, which must be duly signed by the physical planner.
  • The planner and the investor will then publish public notices regarding the proposed change of user in two daily newspapers, inviting objections from the public within a period of not less than fourteen (14) days.  A site notice will also be placed on the site indicating intention to change its use within the same duration.
  • Planning brief/report for the site is prepared by the physical planner. The process of preparing and implementing a planning brief/report provides a framework for collecting information about a site, and investigating and evaluating different interests in it. The brief will explain why the change of use is in line with the policy and why it will not have any negative effects on the land and the neighboring properties. The process could take from one day to 7days depending on the scale of the project
  • The requisite fee will be paid to the respective County Governments and the receipt annexed to the planning brief/report prepared by the physical planner.
  • The brief will then be submitted to the County Government’s Department of Physical Planning for approval. The County Government receives submissions from the general public on any oppositions to the change of use. This process could take up to 14 working days: –
  • The County Government will then review the Change of Use proposal/brief with the public objections received if any and will pass a resolution, recording reasons, regarding its consideration or non-consideration for the change. This process takes a minimum of 20 days and could extend depending on the requirements the County Government wants fulfilled.
  • The authority shall, if it finds that the changes sought are relevant to planning principles and are in public interest and are not in contravention to any other statute, give permission for the same by issuing a PPA2 form.


  • Two Dully filled P.P.A 1 forms in triplicate submitted and signed by a Registered physical Planner
  • Planning Brief prepared by a Registered Physical Planner (signed accordingly)
  • Ownership documents (Title Deeds)
  • Comprehensive Location Plan
  • Advertisement of proposal on:
  • a) Two local dailies
  • b) On site
  • Application fee receipt
  • Latest Rates payment receipts

6.Professional & Statutory Cost

  • Change of User Application fee (Counties charge differently depending on location or the change sought)
  • PPA 1 form fee
  • Newspaper Advertisements (Two daily newspapers)
  • Professional Fee (Depends on the size of the project and the location of the project/property)


Although not a must, Change of User is usually required for most developments. The process can be quite tiresome and even costly for clients who are not conversant with this department. With the many brokers & conmen in government offices, it is advisable to let a professional do it for you.

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