The Federal Housing Authority (FHA) has been urged to take the lead in the provision of public rental housing in the country.
The President of the Association of Housing Corporations of Nigeria (AHCN), Dr. Victor Onukwugha made the plea during a courtesy call on the Acting Managing Director of the Federal Housing Authority, Barr. Umar Salihu Gonto in Abuja.
Onukwugha said the AHCN has noticed that the FHA has not provided rental housing in any of its numerous estates across the country since it was established in 1973 despite rental housing being one of the core mandates of the FHA.
He said the association is currently promoting a concept that will make affordable housing available to Nigerians through an initiative called ERAHOMS which is geared towards eradicating homelessness in Nigeria.
The President added that the housing initiative is proposed to provide at least 1000 housing units annually in each state of the federation. Adding that one area of concentration in actualizing the dream us through rental housing.
‘’rental housing is an area in the housing sector that has been deserted and left in the hands of greedy landlords that have been subjecting Nigerians to their selfish whims and caprices.’’
‘’our objective is to flood the market with rental housing through our member organizations in all state capitals to drive down rents and discourage annual lump rental. We have established partnership with the Family Homes Funds Limited to support this initiative and FMBN is strategically positioned to provide mortgages for the end users especially those interested in rent to own thereby creating an exit point for any investment on the projects.’’ Onukwugha said
The President said the association is looking at the possibility of state housing corporations taking over some of the long abandoned FHA estates across Nigeria for possible completion for rental housing, with a call on FHA to equally convert some of its unoccupied estates to rental estate which will assist in reducing and ameliorating housing challenges.
He lamented the increasing declining trends on FHA estates across the country and said AHCN is recommending that the FHA take on estate regeneration program as an integral part or urban renewal to upgrade its estates nationwide, taking FESTAC in Lagos as pilot.
The Association of Housing Corporations of Nigeria was established in 1964 by the defunct three regional housing corporations and the Lagos Executive Development Board and it is the umbrella body with 50 member organizations consisting of federal and state property agencies, housing research institutes, mortgage establishments and some private property developers.
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