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Affordable Housing, Housing Project

Family homes funds set to boost cooperative housing market -MD

Abuja, May 2, 2019 (NAN) The Managing Director of Family Homes Fund, Mr Femi Adewole has said that the programme was set to boost cooperative housing through its rolled out funds.

Adewole made this known at a cooperative housing workshop organised by the Nigeria Integrated Social Housing (NISH), Affordable Housing Ltd in collaboration with Family Homes Funds, on Thursday in Abuja.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Family Homes Funds is a Social Housing Programme initiated by the Federal Government to provide inexpensive mortgages for low-income individuals and families across the country.

Under the Family Home Fund scheme, which is domiciled in the Ministry of Finance, civil servants who earn salary of 30,000 and above can have access to mortgages to own a home.

Adewole said that Family Homes Funds which was a special purpose vehicle for financial institutions was primarily to facilitate the production of about 500, 000 homes and over 1.5 million job creation.

“It is a very new fund and has been running effectively in the past nine months.

He said that the programme had four pillars of funds to achieve home ownership namely Affordable Housing Fund, Home Loans Assistance Funds, Rental Housing Fund and Land and Infrastructure Fund.

He said that the objectives of cooperative housing could be achieved by developing capabilities of the market with workshops to identify support for capacity base for set of cooperatives with set goals.

According to him, cooperatives in an organised sector can be transformational enablers of affordable housing delivery particularly to people on low and middle income.

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“We can also achieve our objectives by identifying the capacity gaps that hinders cooperatives from playing central role in affordable housing delivery then strive to bridge them.

Adewole said that Nigeria could replicate what other housing cooperatives in other parts of the world were doing adding that Urban Housing Cooperative in India owned about 4.5 million homes between them over the last 10 years

We must make the cooperatives very strong vehicles for reliable and affordable housing delivery in the country.

He further said that there were about 2,600 Housing Cooperatives in Pakistan with inception since 1972 produced about 27 million homes strong membership while there were 5,700 housing cooperatives in Zimbabwe of with significant number of members as women.

According to him, the housing cooperative is only responsible for almost 80 per cent of housing delivery in Zimbabwe

Speaking on the consistent failure in meeting the housing needs target, he said that any housing policy before the Shagari 1979 housing policy has failed to deliver anything more than10 per cent of the intended policy.
Mr Benson Iyohmere, Former Managing Director, Police Mortgage Bank in an address also underscored the role of cooperatives in affordable housing delivery.
Iyohmere said that since government could not adequately provide direct housing to people in need of shelter, cooperative housing should be the alternative means.
He said that one of the reasons why Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) could not reach out to many workers was because of non-remittance of the National Housing Fund (NHF) contributions by some employers.

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Iyohmere added that FMBN was presently dwelling on Cooperative Development Loan and had seized dwelling on Estate Development Loan due to defaulters.

According to him, Nigerians should come together to pool resources through cooperative means to achieve affordable housing.

He listed some challenges of housing cooperatives in housing delivery as low income, high interest rate, lack of access to land and government mortgage documentation requirement.

He further said that dearth of long-term funding and high cost of land titling and acquisition including government consent hindered development adding that without these there would be no development.

“These are major issues that affect construction and governments need to make the process seamless for development by developers. For every mortgage documentation there must also be an underwriting standard.

Iyohmere however listed key cooperative principles which Family Home Funds would use to appraise request of cooperative societies.

He listed the seven key principles as voluntary and open membership, democratic member control, economic participation, autonomy and independence, education, training and information, coperation among cooperatives and a concern for community.

Dr Peter Kuroshi, Registrar, Council of Registered Builders of Nigeria (CORBON) decried the challenges hindering housing delivery in the country hence underscored the need for regulation in the sector.

Kuroshi said that apart from affordability quality and standardisation should be encouraged in housing construction value chain.
“Most cooperatives are committed to housing projects not knowing precisely what it entails in terms of standardisation in building process and cooperative profit management,’’ he said.
“After procuring, you will incur cost to get them to the level you will be satisfied with. Get involve in project inspection too in order to get the value of your money.

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Source: By Emmanuella Anokam New Agnecy of Nigeria (NAN)

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