In the next five years, the housing market in Nigeria expects about 500,000 homes, that is 100,000 housing units per year, as Family Homes Funds (FHF) continues its interventions in the country’s housing sector through strategic partnership with players in the housing sector and leading Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) in the world.
At an average of four persons per housing unit, it means about 2 million persons will have shelter over their head when these housing units are completed and delivered to the market, reducing considerably the country’s over 20 million housing demand-supply gap.
FHF is Federal Government of Nigeria’s intervention programme in the housing sector. It is expected that the funds housing development activities will create about 1.5 million jobs. Given the multiplier effect of job creation, expectation is that over 3 million households will be empowered economically.
Recently, on the sideline of the Abuja International Housing Show, the Fund signed a memorandum of understanding with Construction Skills Training and Empowerment Project Limited (C-STEMP).
C-STEMP is an organisation with a vision to build a pool and database of certified artisans with the requisite skills to meet industry needs that translate to better quality of work and life for all stakeholders.
This partnership, according to officials of the Fund, is very strategic and critical because it will help to provide the needed skill set for the production of the planned 500,000 housing units without recourse to importing labour from neighbouring West African countries like Togo and Benin Republic where most of the artisans for housing construction in Nigeria come from.
Currently, FHFL is seeking partnership with developers to create vocational jobs and empowerment programmes and products for low to medium income earners currently in or potentially interested in building a career in construction.
In implementing this empowerment programme, the Fund emphasises need to incorporate training, assessment and certification as conditions for beneficiaries to access its programmes and to ensure that only skilled labour are utilized on its projects. Its partnership with C-STEMP is also aimed to provide affordable and quality homes while creating jobs for highly qualified persons.
FHF is also in partnership with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Ministry of Finance and international financial institutions, making it a pivotal force in delivering affordable housing to Nigerians through multiple schemes including Help-to-own, Rent-to-own, affordable and flexible mortgage plans, among others.
“Our role is primarily to meet affordable housing demands in Nigeria,” explained Femi Adewole, the Fund’s managing director, adding, “we are here because it is not enough to supply houses without taking care of the demand side.”
He disclosed that the Funds had, so far, developed about 1000 homes with another 3000 at different stages of completion, pointing out that the fund has been able to create about 1400 jobs through these projects. Over 500 units have been completed in Nasarawa State, 750 in Kano, 650 in Delta and many more all over the country.
The Fund recently bagged ‘Affordable Housing Promoter of the Year Award from at the just concluded 2019 edition of the Nigeria Housing Awards.
Adewole commended organisers of the Awards and also his team and partners in the housing sector for chasing the much needed dream of ensuring that Nigerians, irrespective of their income level, could have access to one of their most important needs: shelter.