Mangaf Fire Sparks Surge in Kuwait’s Warehouse and Housing Costs

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KUWAIT CITY, Jun 18: The tragedy of the Mangaf fire has imposed a new reality on both the government and the private sector in Kuwait, necessitating a mandatory procedural path to reorganize the real estate landscape, particularly concerning “BachelorAccomodation” and warehousing facilities. This systematic shake-up is expected to lead to fundamental organizational changes, which, in turn, will increase the costs associated with warehouses and accomodation for bachelor laborers. Consequently, this will likely lead to higher tender prices in the upcoming period, driven by the need for improved quality and increased operating expenses.

The Mangaf fire has significantly driven up the rents for warehouses and bachelor’s buildings, with prices rising swiftly and considerably. There are expectations of further increases unless solutions are proposed to create new warehouse spaces and residential alternatives that maintain high standards of security and safety, thereby eliminating housing chaos. The government has taken a stricter stance toward random warehouses, enforcing penalties on violators.

Real estate experts highlight that property dealers will face substantial difficulties, particularly those who have allowed some apartments to be rented out as warehouses without adequate supervision. This issue is exacerbated by instances where engineering spaces have been altered contrary to municipal licenses.

Following the tragedy, there has been a noticeable 40 percent increase in warehouse rental prices, with expectations of a 100 percent rise if the state does not provide storage alternatives for many investors who were utilizing illegal building basements as warehouses. This situation raises concerns about potential increases in the prices of goods and merchandise for consumers.

Informed sources indicated that rental prices for stores are determined based on the type of activity. For instance, the prices of stores in Shuwaikh, Al-Rai, and Al-Ardiya dedicated to food ranged between 4 and 7 dinars per square meter before the Mangaf fire, with areas ranging from 500 to 1,000 meters. They emphasized the difficulty of finding small, individual spaces in these areas, while car warehouse prices ranged between 1.25 dinars and 1.5 dinars per square meter.

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