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How Faith Communities Are Addressing the DC Region’s Housing Challenges

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments recently announced that 56,250 new housing units are needed in the next decade to serve low- and moderate-income households in the region. Ten percent of those units may come from a somewhat surprising partner: the faith community.

The Faith-Based Development Initiative (FBDI), a project of Enterprise Community Partners, has been working with houses of worship for the past 13 years, helping them find ways to ensure “people of all incomes have access to fit and affordable housing and community resources.”

At a recent summit, Rev. David Bowers, Enterprise’s vice president and mid-Atlantic market leader, discussed how affordability challenges affect many people in the region and stated that one of the FBDI’s goals is for the faith community to contribute toward developing 10 percent of the 56,250 additional new units—or 5,625 new homes.

I was honored to speak at the summit, titled Houses of Worship in a Changing Community: The Suburbanization of Poverty and Urban Displacement, hosted at the Washington National Cathedral and organized by Enterprise Community Partners and the Housing Association of Nonprofit Developers.

After Rev. Bowers’s welcome, I discussed the Urban Institute’s recent research on the Washington region’s current and future housing needs to give the group more context for their discussions that morning.

For example, most households in the region with incomes of less than $54,300—more than 500,000 households—pay 30 percent or more of their income toward their rent or mortgage, a level that the US Department of Housing and Urban Development considers unaffordable. These incomes include people with full-time jobs such as nursing assistants, food preparation workers, and paramedics.

I also talked about some of the policy options that can help the region address its housing challenges:

  • preserve existing affordable housing
  • produce more housing
  • protect vulnerable tenants and homeowners from rising costs and displacement

In this “three-point sermon” (as a later speaker described it), I also highlighted what the faith community can do to support the region’s affordable housing goals and described areas where they might have the biggest impact.

Support efforts to care for those who are homeless or vulnerable to becoming homeless

Many houses of worship are already doing this, by raising money and even directly providing shelter, meals, clothing, and other essentials to individuals and families at risk. Along with services provided by nonprofits, these efforts are a vital part of the region’s social safety net and, for those who have proven their capacity to deliver high quality services, need to be continued and even expanded.

Make surplus land available for housing production

Available land for development is becoming scarcer, particularly in DC. For this summit, Urban looked at property data for DC, Arlington, and Montgomery and Fairfax Counties and found nearly 800 vacant parcels owned by faith-based institutions, making up almost 726 acres.

Most of these parcels are zoned residential and if we assume multifamily housing could be built on that land, depending on the density of housing, it could support the construction of between 43,000 and 108,000 new housing units.

Use influence to support more housing and more housing affordability in communities

Although the region clearly needs more housing, new development can be met with strong opposition. Those against a proposed project may speak out online and at public meetings or display “No!” signs on their front yards.

Residents may have legitimate concerns about the effects of new development and should be free to express them, but those views may not always represent the opinions or interests of the larger community.

To ensure decisionmakers hear a balance of views, faith communities can be more vocal and organized in supporting much-needed new housing development. I highlighted the example of Neighbors for More Neighbors, a grassroots effort to mobilize voices in Minneapolis in support of a new plan that proposed building more housing to address the city’s shortage of houses and apartments.

The group organized residents to speak at hearings in favor of the plan and created their own window and yard signs so proponents could publicly display their support. Neighbors for More Neighbors has successfully demonstrated that organizing for more housing can be a positive influence on local policy.

Other speakers at the summit highlighted work already completed or underway that has been supported (PDF) by the faith-based community, including housing developments, community centers, and training facilities.

Examples of projects supported by FBDI include the following:

  • Matthews Memorial Terrace, a 99-unit housing development and community center in Anacostia
  • Gilliam Place, a development with 173 units of affordable housing and a bilingual culinary training program in Arlington
  • The Israel Manor Life Learning Center and Senior Residences (PDF), a community and health care facility with 47 units of senior housing in Brentwood

It was truly inspiring to learn about these wonderful efforts.

As Urban has noted, solving the region’s housing challenges is not the job of local governments or nonprofits alone. The faith community, along with businesses, philanthropy, and others, all need to play a role. Although the challenges are large, by working together, the region can rise to meet them.

Source: greaterdc

Housing Deficit: Ghana Must Adopt Sustainability—Consultant

A consultant and auditor to SGS Ghana, Mr Paul Ocran, has advised Ghanaian government and private sector to adopt sustainability measures in their quest to bridge the housing deficit.

In a chat with News Ghana, Mr Ocran said more Ghanaian design professionals should be aware of EDGE, a free software application that enables them to model the environmental impacts of their building projects in more than 150 countries, including Ghana. An innovation of IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, EDGE is supported by Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO).

EDGE can be used on smart phones, tablets or computers, providing access to design professionals to help clients certify their projects at the design stage as well as after completion. The software has significant advantages over the conventional way of designing.

“When we look at the housing deficit of more than two million units, questions come to mind,” Ocran said. “How can the government and the private sector work together to ensure the gap is overcome in a sustainable way? Should housing needs be met, what will the effect be on our natural resources? We must think ahead to how we are going to save energy and water,” he said.

Ghana’s housing deficit is said to have hit two million units, according to the Minister for Works and Housing, Samuel Atta Akyea. This implies the need to build 190,000 to 200,000 units of houses each year for the next 10 years to bridge the gap, which is expected to cost $3.4 billion.

The government announced an ambitious plan to establish a GH¢1 billion mortgage and housing finance to leverage private capital while providing affordable housing for Ghanaians. Though the plan was announced in the 2019 Budget Statement and Economic Policy presented by the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta to the country’s parliament, the government is yet to implement it. Given the anticipated rapid increase of the housing sector, building sustainably and minimising the pressure on resources is a key concern.

“EDGE is a practical solution for governments, real estate developers, and private individuals because it helps quantify the value of energy and water savings a building can have when environmentally-friendly choices are selected,” said Ocran. “Proactive developers can stand out in the market if their projects are EDGE certified. EDGE gives the project a green brand and verifies the savings in terms of reduced impacts. Developers can use EDGE as a way to demonstrate the value and quality of a property.”

With an EDGE-certified property, each homeowner receives a certificate as proof that they have purchased or are renting an apartment that is resource efficient. Industry professionals such as Ocran describe the EDGE software as an innovation that puts a powerful resource into the hands of designers to access real-time feedback about how to create green buildings.

According to Mr Ocran, assessing the sustainability of your building in the past required bringing on board environmental consultants, energy consultants, and water consultants. EDGE provides an integrated service to help model all aspects of the project. Additionally, the extra cost that it takes to build green is revealed together with the payback period through reduced operational costs.

“With EDGE, you can quickly and accurately access the data on the sustainability of your building. Previously you needed multiple professionals and software applications to achieve the same result. That’s the innovation EDGE brings to the market.”

Several high-profile buildings have achieved EDGE certification. These include Atlantic Tower, located at the Airport City enclave, two offices located at the Tema Port Expansion Area and the new Terminal 3 located in the Tema Port.

Also, the 363-key Pullman Hotel, which is going to be the largest in the country when completed in 2021, is currently aiming to achieve EDGE certification.

Source: News Ghana

President Kenyatta and UNOPS Launch 8,800 Affordable Housing Units

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday launched 8,800 housing units on the outskirts of the capital Nairobi that were developed through a partnership with the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) to cater for low and middle income earners.

Kenyatta said during the launch of the new housing units that his government will strengthen partnerships with multilateral lenders and the private sector to boost home ownership.

“We are committed to increasing home ownership in the country as we embark on the implementation of the Affordable Housing Agenda,” said Kenyatta.

The government has laid the foundation to pave way for the development of affordable houses for our urban and peri-urban population through innovative financing,” he added.

Kenya’s State Department for Housing and Urban Development in September 2018 signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with UNOPS to develop 100,000 housing units.

The project, that is being implemented by a local contractor aims to deliver affordable homes for retired employees of various UN agencies based in Kenya and their families.

Kenyatta said that Kenya is leveraging on a progressive regulatory environment to attract capital into the affordable housing agenda.

“Our partnership with UNOPS and other private entities will enable future home buyers access affordable mortgages,” said Kenyatta adding that 5 billion U.S. dollars will be injected into the Kenyan economy once the 100,000 housing units are developed in conjunction with the UN body.

Kenyatta said the government has set aside 30 million U.S. dollars to develop supportive infrastructure like access roads, power, water and sewerage as the implementation of the affordable housing agenda gathers steam.

Vitaly Vanshelboim, executive director of UNOPS said that partnerships are key to ensure that Kenyans have access to decent homes irrespective of their socio-economic status.

“We look forward to showcasing the new housing project we have just delivered in partnership with the Kenyan government to the rest of Africa,” said Vanshelboim.

James Macharia, Kenya’s cabinet secretary for housing and urban development, said the government is banking on tax rebates to encourage the private sector to develop homes for low and middle income earners.

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Families Living in Tree Huts as New Zealand Housing Crisis Bites

A 30% rise in people waiting for state housing in Northland region fuels country’s ‘desperate’ shortage in affordable homes

New Zealand government MPs have heard that the housing situation in Northland has become so desperate some families are living in the woods, in huts built in the forks of trees.

Northland is one of the most deprived regions of the country, with a median income of NZ$23,400. The population is also 32% Māori – double that of the rest of the country.

At a housing hui (meeting) held in Whangarei on Thursday, the Māori affairs minister, Nanaia Mahuta, who is also associate minister of housing, was told by local housing advocates that the shortage of affordable housing had become “desperate” in the north island region, with families forced to live in trees, self-built huts, old vehicles, lean-tos, derelict houses and carports.

Mahuta acknowledged the housing situation had become a “crisis”, especially for Māori, saying there had been a 30% increase in Northland for those on the waiting list for a state house in the past year.

Having a home was a pillar of whanau (family) prosperity and wellbeing, the minister said in her address to the hui.

“Many people in Northland are facing significant housing challenges – from people who are homeless, people living in their cars or in the outdoors – through to people who do have a house but it’s cold and damp or overcrowded, through to young families struggling to find a place to rent or to save a deposit,” Mahuta said.

“It has taken us a long time to get to the point we are at with Māori housing. It will not be a short journey to change the course of the past.”

But while the government says building housing in Northland is a “priority”, locals on the ground feel they are being ignored.

“Sometimes I feel like I’m just one social worker on the end of the phone with many others trying to get through a gateway that’s impossible,” Te Hā Oranga social worker Christiane Rudolph-Anania told the hui, as reported by RNZ. “And when I say gateway, I’m talking Housing New Zealand, MSD [ministry of social development]. There seems to be no empathy.”

Northland is New Zealand’s fastest growing province. Contributing to last year’s 2.3% population growth were Aucklanders fleeing unaffordable housing in the country’s biggest city, and instead choosing to buy in Northland and commute to the city.

This meant that for Northland locals, buying or even renting a home was becoming harder by the month.

Towns such as Kawakawa and Kaikohe, once neglected rural enclaves tainted by long associations with poverty and gangs, are now experiencing significant property booms, putting homes out of reach for Māori families who have lived in the area for generations.

Last year Kawakawa’s median house price rose 39%, peaking at NZ$280,000, when it was just $127,000 three years ago.

Māori elders say many young Māori are also returning to the region, adding further pressure to housing stock, after becoming disillusioned with how tough life is becoming in New Zealand cities.

Northland’s population boom is having a knock-on effect in other areas too, with many new residents having to wait a month or more for a GP appointment, and school enrolments up 10%.

Source: theguardian

Why Tech Companies Should Support Ballot Initiatives To Solve The Housing Crisis

 

The argument in this post is that tech companies should reserve a small fraction of the money they spend on housing philanthropy and put it toward ballot initiatives to lift California’s restrictions on apartment construction (i.e. zoning reform). Shortly after Silicon Valley’s tech titans pledged billions to solve the Bay Area’s notoriously high housing costs, critics and policymakers began to note that philanthropy alone was unlikely to make much of a dent in the problem; Representative Scott Weiner tweeted that without deregulating the State’s extremely restrictive construction rules, even billions couldn’t pay enough units to match the growing population.

Though politically controversial, Weiner has proposed some of the most celebrated bills among pro-development advocates in order to dramatically loosen restrictions on density and local approval requirements. Unfortunately, Weiner’s proposal have lost again and again in the state legislature, as his critics and their allies successfully block his efforts, despite the fact that some polling indicates that the majority of Californians support aggressive reform.

In many parts of California, super-active local groups and their representatives often outweigh the majority opinion. For instance, though San Francisco elected one of the most aggressive zoning reform advocates for Mayor, London Breed, the city legislature, which represents the various neighborhoods, have continuously blocked her efforts to enact changes. As I observed in a town hall that was overwhelmingly dominated by homeowners fiercely opposing Weiner’s policies, parochial activism does not represent voters at large.

The same pattern is observed at the State level, where the Governor, Gavin Newsom, has gotten little traction among state reps towards his goal of building +3 million new units. In other words, California has a weirdly anti-democratic set up when it comes to resolving the housing crisis, where incumbent local groups can override the majority of those who would wish to move to an area in which they could vote.

Fortunately, the State has a remedy for when legislatures cannot make progress: direct democracy through ballot initiative. Ballot initiatives are normally tricky, since gathering enough signatures can cost a few million just to qualify for a vote and then millions more for a campaign. So, naturally, many groups don’t have the resources.

But, tech companies have already pledged billions for more housing and have, in the past, tech leaders have supported Weiner’s proposals. If tech companies took just a fraction of the money they’ve already pledged to the housing issue and put it toward state and city ballots, California has a real shot of passing necessary reforms.

Now, this begs the question as to why tech companies haven’t already done this. The short answer is, I believe, fear. Companies are already reeling nationwide from the political backlash; additionally, locals can cause their own trouble, such as staging headline-grabbing protests in front of buses, which rattle employees as they’re lining up to commute to work. Supporting ballots would invoke the ire of local activists. As a result, tech companies, which, well, want to focus mostly on making tech, don’t want to deliberately embroil themselves in something so controversial

For better or worse, however, I think tech companies are naive to think that they can avoid controversy; either way, tech companies will end up paying for the problem: avoiding protests from anti-development groups now means that they have to dedicate billions for affordable housing and also in higher pay for local employees; and, they’ll still likely be blamed when their well-paid employees displace locals competing for the small stock of available units.

So, instead, I think tech companies should take a bold stand and fund ballot initiatives to tackle the housing crisis head on. Maybe, with some public pressure, they will.

Source: forbes

Solving the Housing Deficit to Affect Nigeria’s Emerging Middle Class

One sector of the Nigerian economy that has experienced rapid growth despite facing several challenges is the real estate sector.

Even in the face of a recent economic downturn, the sector has been developing in leaps and bounds with several buildings springing up, most especially in new locations predicted to become a prime destination in Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt.

Nigeria’s real estate sector is one of Africa’s greatest potentials while also representing the continent as a major competitive player in the global real estate market, thus appealing to investors as a destination for investment.

Despite the expansion, the growth being experienced is far from solving the over 22million housing deficit experienced in the country.

This comes in a time where the emerging middle class of the economy is seeking affordable housing in a clean and decent environment, which is far from the country’s present reality.

The stabilization of the market claimed by an investment analysis report published by Global Property Guide can be argued to be relative. This is because the growth experienced in the real estate market according to the report favours mostly the highbrow areas like Ikoyi that experienced a growth of 20% followed by a 12% growth in Ibeju Lekki while areas like Ajah, Gbagada, Surulere and Yaba were relatively steady in the prices of property.

Guess what, areas Ikorodu, Alimisho, Isolo experienced in a decline.

Reasons for these declines in lowbrow areas are simple, they are connected to issues are yet to be addressed by the government. Issues like poor infrastructure, bad roads, traffic and congestions, poor planning and development alongside other pertinent issues that have served as hindrances to such areas

Therefore, if Nigeria must solve its housing deficit issues, it must look at the issues holistically and develop concrete plans that will address basic needs that will promote equal growth in all its urban locations.

It is only normal for investors, to purchase property in areas where there is good road connectivity, proper urban planning and development, etc.

This is the reason the gap between the poor and the rich in Nigeria keep widening because even a child that is borne today can tell you areas that are meant for the rich.

Sadly, some areas that experienced a decline in house price used to be seen as highbrow areas back in the days.

However, the Nigeria system is such that when there is a new location that the government is paying attention to, the affluent and well to do immediately move out from where they reside to the new location.

Areas like Isolo Ikeja, Ogudu, Ilupeju used to be regarded as highbrow, sadly not anymore because the roads are now very bad that people now experience terrible traffic almost on a daily basis. There are now encroachment and shanties in those areas with people now hawking all over the place. This was not how it was before now.

As long as the government is not paying attention to these issues, they are not creating an enabling environment to have an emerging middle class like in most western economies.

The model should be such that when the affluent staying in those areas choose to move to a new location, the old locations should not be abandoned but maintained and adapted for the emerging middle class. And such areas should be well maintained even as the government is making sure the needed infrastructures are in place.

There is nothing wrong with the government focusing on Lekki, and its environs. But I can boldly tell you that every new project, plan and infrastructures are being cited in new locations like Lekki and its environs leaving other old locations to bare.

Governor Sanwo Olu recently signs $629m facility to complete Lekki Deep Seaport, which is very good, let us ask our self-important questions like:

On completion of the Lekki Deep Seaport what will be the fate of Apapa port?

What plans does the government have on improving the state of Apapa port, from road connectivity to decongestions and improving its infrastructure?

Why can’t the government evenly distribute the important project across the state and not just focus on one area?

What plans does the government have in making sure that the emerging middle class whether being a government or a private-sector worker have access to mortgage financing?

Why is the government not investing in building affordable housing themselves just like it is done in the western world?

Everyone is happy about the proposed increased budgetary allocation for housings and infrastructure. Have we asked if the government has any visible plans on ground to make sure the increased allocation affects the lives of low-income earners and the middle class?

These are so many other questions and important issues that need answers if the government wants to solve the housing deficit in the country. Right now all their government attention is on new locations and that cannot help the country.

Source: thenigerianvoice

Housing Deficit: Nigeria Accounts For 39% in Africa

Nigeria’s housing deficit accounts for about 39.3 per cent of Africa’s total, Shelter Afrique has said.

Shelter Afrique, a pan-African finance institution, said Nigeria had 22 million housing deficit out of the total 56 million on the continent.

The Chief Executive Officer, Shelter Afrique, Mr Andrew Chimphondah, who made this known during the signing of a memorandum of understanding with Family Homes Fund Limited, said Nigeria remained the firm’s biggest market and target for affordable housing.

He explained that one of the reasons for the MoU was to co-fund specific deals, share market knowledge and operate in line with best practices.

According to him, the core vision is to develop decent and affordable homes for all Nigerians and solve the affordability challenge in the demand and supply side.

Chimphondah said, “We are very grateful to get into a partnership with Family Homes Funds and we are delighted to sign the MoU. One of the things we realised when we re-strategised over the last few years is that beyond financing affordable housing, one of our strengths was leveraging our partnerships and networks.”

The signing of the MoU is expected to result in specific co-funded affordable housing projects which both organisations said had been identified as low-hanging fruit projects that would be affordable.

The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Family Homes Funds, Mr Femi Adewole, said the MoU was a small but momentous occasion as Shelter Afrique had been a housing financing organisation for more than 35 years with significant experience across many countries.

“On the other hand, Family Homes Funds is barely a couple of years old. This partnership and relationship, birthed out of this MoU provides the beginning of what I hope and expect – and we will work assiduously for it to be a very successful relationship,” he said.

He added that both organisations would create houses for Nigerians who needed shelter the most.

Source: Punch Excluding Headline

FG Seeks States’ Collaboration to Address Housing Deficit

Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola has called for closer ties with the state governments to address housing deficit in the country.

He said that for the objective of providing adequate housing for Nigerians to be achieved, state governments should be on the same page with the Federal Government.

Speaking at the 8th Meeting of the National Council on Lands, Housing and Urban Development with the “Housing Development and Consumer Credit as Strategies for National Prosperity”, with representatives of the states of the Federation, Fashola, said the country cannot achieve much if all of its component parts are not contributing much as expected.

According to him, “no matter how much we intend to achieve in terms of housing, we need the states to work with us, while implementing their own programmes to also collaborate with us. That is the first important thing I want to say. Of all the National Councils of the various Ministries, perhaps the Council on Lands and Housing and Urban Development is perhaps the most important one.

“While the Federal Government wants to commit to Housing and Urban Development for its economic, social and other benefits, interestingly it is the state governments, who by virtue of the Land Use Act that control the land. So how do you build if you do not have land and that is why I say this council meeting is so important, because collaboration can be fostered. Land can be made available as it was done at the 2016 Council when we wanted to start the National Housing pilot project. It was the states who gave the land, the 34 states and I am happy to report that we are building in all those states today. We need that cooperation to continue.

“Also since 2003 the Supreme Court of Nigeria had determined that Urban Development and Planning is a matter exclusively preserved for the jurisdiction of state governments. So it is not just important for you to own land what you do with that land and how you use it is a matter solely controlled by the state.”

He continued that, “therefore whatever the FG seeks to achieve in terms of urban development, housing development, it needs collaboration with the states and this is important. It is important therefore that this collaboration must continue especially if Nigeria is to achieve her housing aspirations. The cooperation between us and the states must be the foundation of the prosperity we want to achieve; this is why we chose this year’s theme.”

Source: thenationonlineng

Nigeria Plans Reduction in Housing Deficit

THE Federal Ministry of Works and Housing  on Tuesday assured that the Federal Government was fine-tuning plans aimed at reducing housing deficit in the country.

Its Permanent Secretary,  Mr Mohammed Bukar, who spoke in Abuja at the technical session of the ongoing 8th Meeting of the National Council on Lands, Housing and Urban Development, said the government would create an enabling environment for greater sub-national governments and the private sector’s participation in addressing the nation’s housing problems.

The theme of the meeting was: Housing Development and Consumer Credit as Strategies for National Prosperity.

Represented by the ministry’s Director of Planning Research and Statistics, Dr Famous Eseduwo, the Permanent secretary said housing was one of the fundamental human needs in every society.

He said housing was a veritable indicator of standard of living in any society, adding that housing was currently in short supply and not affordable.

Bukar said the nation’s current National Housing Programme was an initiative specifically designed to encourage local manufacturers, professionals, artisans and craftsmen toward creating employment and wealth.

He said  the housing programme had promoted the use of home-grown building materials in the construction of the houses, except where such materials could not be produced locally.

Bukar said the ministry was working in collaboration with the office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation and cooperative societies in providing affordable houses.

He enjoined the delegates and stakeholders to make meaningful contributions on the submitted memoranda to enable government formulate policies that would facilitate more Nigerian home ownership.

In an address, Dr Eseduwo said the event was in recognition of government’s new initiatives to generate more jobs and create wealth for Nigerians through affordable housing construction.

He identified factors militating against construction of affordable houses in Nigeria to include limited access to finance, high cost of land registration, lack of access to land and insecurity.

The event, which started on Nov.4, will end on Nov.8 and is being attended by the ministry’s directors, heads of government agencies, private developers and delegates from all states, professional bodies in the built industry and the academia.

Source: thenationonlineng

 

Fashola Housing

Housing: Tackling Nigeria’s Huge Housing Deficit

Recently, the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola disclosed that the Federal Government is currently constructing affordable homes in 34 states of the federation. According to the Minister, this is part of the fulfilment of the model National Housing Programme, which is aimed at providing acceptable and affordable houses for Nigerians.

There have been various initiatives by the Federal Government to bridge Nigeria’s huge housing deficit, unfortunately, most of these initiatives have not yielded their desired results. We recall that the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) established in 1956, (originally known as the Nigerian Building Society) had the strategic intent of supplying the mortgage and housing markets with sustainable liquidity in order to support the advancement of homeownership amongst Nigerians.

However, more than 60 years down the line, FMBN is yet to deliver affordable and modern houses to majority of Nigerians, despite the obvious untapped opportunities in the housing market.

 

In order to fulfil the mandate of FMBN, the bank was restructured into a Federal Government-Sponsored Enterprise under the reform of the housing sector based on 2002/2006 National Policy on Housing and Urban Development. This exercise birthed National Housing Fund (NHF) – a fund established with the objective of mobilising long-term funds from Nigerian workers, banks, insurance companies and the Federal Government to advance loans at soft interest rates to its contributors.

Under the NHF, all workers are to contribute 2.5% of their monthly salaries and loans are advanced to eligible workers at an interest rate of 6% per annum. The FMBN has the primary responsibility of managing and administering the Fund.

According to the FMBN, Nigeria’s housing gap is estimated to be in the region of 17 million units while homeownership is estimated at a low 25%. In our view, the challenges working against the development of the housing sector can be attributed to a plethora of factors ranging from low access to mortgage financing amid high cost of finance (c.22%-25%), rising costs of constructing houses attributable not only to the cost of factors of production but also regulatory costs of building or owning houses (Surveying fees, Certificate of occupancy, land settlement costs), shrinking disposable income particularly among the middle income earners.

Given that private sector participation in the low-end of the housing construction market has been limited, we believe that a more aggressive intervention by the government in subsiding mortgage financing and increased investment in housing development, will go a long way in bridging the housing deficit and help realise the improvement in homeownership that it desires.

Source: nairametrics

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