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Build-to-Rent Housing Market Explodes as Investors Rush in

During the foreclosure crisis nearly a decade ago, investors plowed into the housing market, buying millions of distressed homes and turning some of them into lucrative rentals.

They transformed the once mom-and-pop market of single-family rentals into a large-scale, formally managed asset class — and it is still growing, in fact faster than ever.

Foreclosures, however, are now few and far between. Distressed properties — foreclosures and short sales ) — make up just 2% of home sales today, down from a high of 49% in March 2009, according to the National Association of Realtors. The regular existing home market is very pricey, so investors are now turning to a new strategy: Buy new. And suddenly, the so-called build-to-rent market is exploding.

This week a small Tampa, Florida-based builder, ERC Homebuilders, is launching a “soft” IPO, hoping to raise $100 million to build more than 1,000 rental homes across the state. It is offering investors private shares using Regulation A+, a form of investment crowdfunding that allows small companies to raise limited funds from the general public. Accredited and non accredited investors can participate.

The homes will be built in contiguous tracts and sold in bulk to large-scale investors. Putting dozens of homes in one location makes property management much easier and far less expensive.

“There is a consumer rental demand that is driving these institutions to want much greater levels of inventory of this product,” said Gerald Ellenburg, CEO of ERC Homebuilders. “They are learning or have learned that new inventory is a much safer and more official rental product.”

The build-to-rent business is growing fast, with several companies, including big names, dipping into it. Toll Brothers recently announced a $60 million investment in a joint venture with BB Living, a build-to-rent company based in Phoenix.

“It’s viewed as an ancillary income stream. We see this as more and more renters may prefer to raise a family or live in a single-family home versus an apartment complex or community or building. And so it is part of our Apartment Living group,” Toll Brothers CEO Douglas Yearley said on the company’s second quarter earnings conference call last month.

Lennar, the nation’s largest homebuilder by revenue, experimented with a build-to-rent community in Sparks, Nevada, and announced this week it is moving further into the space.

“We recently entered an agreement with one of our long-standing third-party relationships to build homes that will be purchased by that third-party in a stand-alone rental community,” Lennar President Rick Beckwitt said on the company’s earnings call. “This community is in Florida and is the first in what we believe will be an ongoing business strategy and relationship where we build and sell homes in bulk on land owned by third parties with no lease-up risk.”

In 2017, 37,000 homes were built as rentals, according to the National Association of Home Builders. That grew to 43,000 last year, or just under 5% of total single-family housing starts. But that is just homes built and held by builders for rent and doesn’t include those sold directly to investors, so the numbers are likely larger and growing more quickly.

“We’ve got clients, multiple, well over a couple billion dollars worth of capital looking to place in this space,” said Michael Finch, executive vice president at SVN/SFRhub Advisors, a new Phoenix-based commercial brokerage firm focused on single family rental and build-to-rent investment portfolios. “They are looking to acquire 5-6,000 homes in the next two years.”

Demand is growing, according to Finch, because while the huge millennial generation is aging into marriage and parenthood, not all of them want nor can they afford to buy a home.

“Many of them are choosing to rent in huge numbers largely due to the flexibility of renting,” said Finch, who believes the same of baby boomers. “They’re moving into smaller homes where they can have a lock-and-leave mentality. They’re tired of homeownership.”

For investors, buying new has a multitude of benefits, especially when the homes are in the same community.

“It is immune from some of the typical repair factors that come in at 15 or 20 years of ownership,” said Ellenburg. “There is also a general contractor warranty. There’s of limited product warranty of your appliances.”

The only operating expense for landlords is the landscaping. In addition, the rents for single family are growing fast at 4.5% annually now compared with 3% rent growth for multifamily apartments, according to John Burns Real Estate Consulting. There is also much less turnover in single-family rentals, and the rental market is much less volatile than the home sales market.

“I think that these funds, these investor groups are looking at a cultural move away from your garden apartment with elevators, swimming pools, tennis courts and common areas,” Ellenburg said. “Homeownership is looking less desirable to some, particularly in the affordable arena, and they have a chance, for very close to the same price, to rent a three-bedroom, two-bath or a four-bedroom, three-bath home and are able to call it their own.”

Of course the home is not their own, but the stigma around renting, along with the historical drive toward homeownership, are waning.

“And I think these investment groups are seeing that shift,” Ellenburg said.

Source: cnbc

Trump Wants to Cut Regulations That Block New Housing

President Trump signed an executive order on Tuesday creating a commission that will recommend ways to cut regulations that stymie new housing construction, embracing an idea shared by affordable housing advocates on the left, and even by Barack Obama.

The specific regulations in the president’s sights, however, include many that will make liberals unhappy.

Over the next year, the new White House council, led by Ben Carson, the secretary of Housing and Urban Development, will study local, state and federal rules that drive up the cost of housing, delay its construction or block it entirely.

The potential list: restrictive zoning and rent control; parking requirements and energy efficiency mandates; density limits and environmental rules; lengthy permitting procedures and labor laws.

That list is a mash-up of some of the prime targets Democratic presidential candidates would like to take on, too — right alongside some of the left’s most prized policies.

In unveiling the effort, Mr. Carson focused less on the specific regulations than the people he said would be helped by unleashing more housing construction: “Americans of all income levels, including working-class Americans such as teachers and nurses, auto mechanics, construction workers, police officers and firefighters whose struggles are sometimes forgotten.”

The National Low Income Housing Coalition reacted by warning that a council focused on barriers to affordable housing could provide pretext to weaken regulations that protect minimum wages, fair housing and the environment. The council will include representatives from the labor and energy departments and the Environmental Protection Agency, all of whom are supposed to consider federal regulations to cut, too.

These diverging interpretations of the president’s announcement point to the strange politics of housing deregulation.

Opposition to new housing — and support for zoning rules and bureaucracies that effectively block it — is bipartisan, particularly among homeowners. But the case for building more housing is bipartisan, too, even if liberals and conservatives often make it sound as if they’re not describing the same thing.

Some liberals see in the web of cumbersome housing regulations an effort to exclude renters, minorities and lower-income residents from many neighborhoods and entire communities, perpetuating segregation. In this view, large-lot single-family zoning and neighborhood review boards are the tools of Nimbyism.

Some conservatives see a tangle of red tape that restricts the construction industry and distorts the market for housing. A conservative ideologically opposed to rules that prescribe how bankers and businesses operate might well feel the same about regulations that say where builders must build and how many times they must defend their plans to the public.

Both camps may be happy to put many of these regulations on the cutting block. But they won’t agree on all of them.

The left and the right are likely to meet on parking requirements, which typically mandate that developers build costly parking garages — of a very specific size — even if tenants might not use them. They are more likely to agree on ending large-lot single-family zoning, which dictates the (large) minimum size of land each house must occupy.

Todd Young, a Republican senator from Indiana, recently introduced a bill, the Yes in My Backyard Act, that would require communities to explain their exclusionary housing policies if they wanted federal Community Development Block Grant dollars. In Oregon, a bill ending single-family zoning across the state passed the Statehouse last week with both Democratic and Republican votes.

But the two sides won’t agree on what to do about rent control (or the right of local communities to enact it). They won’t agree on requirements that buildings meet strict energy standards, or that builders employ construction workers at a higher standard wage.

Communities across the country have increased the number of such rules since the 1970s, adding steps to the approval process, months to project reviews, and new requirements on builders. In some of these areas, it won’t be so simple to tell two kinds of regulations apart: those whose primary goal is to limit new housing and those that, in the service of other goals, make housing more expensive.

“Some things progressives like are raising the cost of development and making housing really unaffordable in some metros,” said Joseph Gyourko, a professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, pointing in particular to high-cost coastal metro areas. “And then some things like large-lot zoning, which you may dislike for your own reasons, are doing the same thing. From an economist’s point of view, if they have the same effect, they have the same effect.”

In broad strokes, there is the potential for bipartisan action. In his 20 years of studying this, Mr. Gyourko said he had never witnessed the bipartisan politics he hears now, from the Democratic senators and presidential contenders Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker, but also from President Trump and Mr. Carson.

Homeowners are a mighty voting bloc in opposition to these ideas. But there’s something powerful, too — as with criminal justice reform — in unlikely coalitions, when libertarians, free-market boosters, social justice advocates, fair-housing groups, Democratic mayors and Republican senators all land on the same idea.

It’s in working out the details that their agendas may come into conflict. President Trump’s housing council, which is due to produce a report a year from now, could influence whether this conversation is headed toward collision or consensus.

Source: nytimes

N12.9bn debt: AMCON takes over Victory Park Estate, Lekki Luxury Homes

The Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) Tuesday took over several multi-billion naira properties in Victory Park Estate, Lekki, Lagos, following a N12, 966,510,191 judgment debt it won at the Court of Appeal in Lagos.

The properties included assets of Knight Rook Ltd situated within Victory Park Estate, among other assets.

AMCON’s move followed the dismissal of an appeal filed by Rev Olajide Awosedo against an October 3, 2017 judgment of the Federal High Court in a suit marked FHC/L/CS/744/17 – Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria v. Knight Rook Limited & Ors.

The appellate court also awarded a cumulative sum of N12, 966,510,191 in favour of AMCON against Knight Rook Ltd, Grant Properties Ltd, Rev Olajide Awosedo, Olawunmi Olajide-Awosedo, Abimbola Olajide-Awosedo and Fibigboye Estates Ltd.

AMCON officials and Sheriffs of the Federal High Court, Lagos, were protected by a detachment of Police officers as they enforced the June 3, 2019 judgment.

The Sheriffs told residents of the estate that they were on lawful duty to execute the Federal High Court judgment against the assets of certain entities, who were allegedly indebted to a consortium of banks, but which debt was taken over by AMCON.

Some residents, who spoke to The Nation on the condition of anonymity, confirmed the development.

They noted that they were aware of a series of court actions regarding the alleged debt and the collateral land, as well as the judgment, adding that many of the residents who had earlier acquired titles from the alleged debtors were affected by the judgment.

Others stated that they were in receipt of an official statement by AMCON to residents, notifying them of the appellate court judgments, upholding the lower court judgment.

The statement, seen by The Nation, reads in part: “AMCON hereby notifies all Occupiers, Residents and all persons laying claim to any portion of land comprised within the Victory Park Estate, Lekki, Lagos that on 3rd June 2019, the Court of Appeal (Lagos Division) in the Appeal No: CA/L/146/18 dismissed the Appeal filed by Rev Olajide Awosedo against the Judgment of the Federal High Court delivered on 3rd October 2017 in the Suit No: FHC/L/CS/744/17 – Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria v. Knight Rook Ltd & Ors, by which a Judgment sum of N12,966,510,191 was cumulatively awarded in favour of AMCON against Knight Rook Ltd, Grant Properties Limited, Rev Olajide Awosedo, Olawunmi Olajide-Awosedo, Abimbola Olajide-Awosedo and Fibigboye Estates Ltd .

“Which judgment also specifically foreclosed the Defendants’ right to the assets of Knight Rook Limited comprised within Victory Park Estate, Lekki, Lagos, among other assets, in satisfaction of the Judgment, which Judgment has been executed by AMCON.”

The statement further directed all persons affected by the judgment and enforcement to contact AMCON through its Solicitors or its Receiver/Manager.

It was gathered that Sosome of the affected residents had since resolved with AMCON by ratification, while others were about taking steps to do same.

In furtherance of that, they last week, engaged a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and gave him their mandate to approach AMCON for negotiation in a bid to secure their interests and find an amicable solution.

Source: thenationonlineng

Govt Looking to help 81 Million Millennials Afford Housing

Owing to a combination of increasing housing prices and high costs of living, 81 million Indonesian millennials cannot afford to buy a house or apartment, according to the Public Works and Housing Ministry.

Public Works and Housing Ministry House Procurement Director General Khalawi Abdul Hamid said the ministry and several related parties were working on a scheme to help millennials afford to buy housing.

“The government is trying to facilitate people, including millennials, to buy houses through [several programs, including] the one-million house program,” said Khalawi on Monday as quoted by kompas.com.

The ministry categorizes millennials into three clusters: those aged 25 to 29, who are mostly in the process of searching for jobs; those aged 30 to 35, who already have jobs and families; and those aged above 35 years, who have high incomes.

Those in the first cluster typically only need to rent apartments that have access to public transportation, Khalawi said, adding that the second cluster of millennials needed 36-square meter residences with two bed rooms.

Meanwhile, the third cluster of millennials could find residences based on their incomes as well as their preferred type of residence.

Khalawi said that, according to research conducted by the ministry, millennials preferred to own or rent residences in urban areas that were well connected to public transportation.

The survey also showed they preferred residences with an internet connection. (bbn)

family homes funds

Osinbajo to Commission Family Homes Funds’ Housing Project in July

All is set for the commissioning of Family Homes Funds housing project on the 12th of July 2019 in Asaba, Delta state.

The estate developed by Family Homes Funds in partnership with Delta state government is made up of 650 housing units for low income earners, and will be commissioned by the Vice President of Nigeria, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, alongside the MD/CEO of Family Homes Funds, Femi Adewole and other special guests.

The affordable housing project consists of one, two and three bedroom bungalows with all necessary facilities for home functionality. The estate has adequate access to water supply, power, security and good road network.

Built with high quality and sustainable materials, the houses are structured in ways that give each owner and his or her family a decent living space and some sense of privacy.

 

According to the MD, Femi Adewole, the estate is built in a fast developing and serene area with a lot of greenery. It represents the Funds’ vision to not only build houses, but to build ones that are healthy to live in and affordable for the owners.

650 affordable housing units built by Family Homes Funds in Delta State

 

The estate is one of the Federal Government special interventions in tackling the country’s housing deficit through Family Homes Funds. Family Homes Funds is a partnership between the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority as founding shareholders.

The Fund is the largest affordable housing-focused fund in Sub-Sahara Africa, leveraging its significant capital (in excess of N500 billion by 2023) to facilitate access to affordable housing for millions of Nigerians on low to medium income groups. Through strategic partnerships with various players in the sector and some of the world’s main Development Finance Institutions, the Fund has an ambitious commitment to facilitate and supply 500,000 homes and 1.5million jobs for the low income earners by 2023.

As a strong sign of commitment, this estate in Asaba is developed in line with this critical objective, and this is just one of the many housing projects currently underway in almost all states of the federation.

Beneficiaries of the project will enjoy a deferred loan for up to 40% of the cost of their home. For the first 5 years of the loan, no payments need to be made. From the 6th year, monthly payments will be made to start repaying both interest and capital to assist the purchaser. The amount paid starts low and increases each year in gradual steps (average 6.5% per annum) in order for the HTB loan to be fully repaid by the 20th year, the same year the mortgage is expected to be fully repaid.

Speaking more on affordability, Femi Adewole said, ‘’we want to ensure that 1 bedroom unit should not be more than N3 million; 2 bedroom unit should not be more than N4.5 million, and 3 bedroom should not be more than N6.5 million.’’

So far, projects that have been completed or ongoing in states like Nasarawa, Borno, Ogun, Delta, Kaduna etc. have directly and indirectly employed at least 15, 000 workers, artisans, suppliers and all categories of housing professionals, with about 360,000 to be created from current development pipeline. Couple with the goal of providing affordable houses for millions of Nigerians, the Fund and its projects have been of significant economic impact through the commercial activities and jobs that have been created in relation to the housing projects.

The Fund which is developing projects in the six geopolitical zones of the country had also recently announced that it is currently building 4700 homes in Borno state, out of which 3000 will be very low cost homes for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). According to Adewole, the project will be ready in months because the sites have been identified and the drawings have been done.

Prior to now, the fund has completed the construction of 400 homes with an average cost of N3.5million in Grand Luvu, Nasarawa State – part of over 4,000 homes under construction in five states namely Ogun, Nasarawa, Kano, Delta and Kaduna. A further 30,000 homes are at advanced stages of negotiation with development partners and has commenced since November 2018.

As the new company builds capacity through the ongoing recruitment campaign, it will achieve a program of 80,000 homes by December 2019.

According to an official of the fund, “our focus is to create homes that people, particularly those on low income can afford but beyond that, ensure that we provide opportunity for them to earn decent wages consistently through our investment in these projects.

“We have spent the last year building very strong foundations for a major take off and now we should start seeing the results in affordable homes and jobs for local people.”

Through a combination of these activities, the Family Homes Fund aims to create or support up to 1.5 million jobs by 2023 making a real difference to the quality of life of their families and the economy.

By Ojonugwa Felix Ugboja

Stanford Commits to $4.7 Billion for Housing, Transit, Public Education

Stanford University is offering $3.4 billion in housing and $1.3 billion for transit and public education benefits as it faces pushback over a proposed 2.3 million-square-foot academic expansion over the next two decades.

The school said in a letter Monday to Santa Clara County that it would spend $3.4 billion to construct 575 affordable housing units and 1,597 market-rate housing units. All the affordable units and 1,015 of the market-rate units would be built first, before 25% of the academic buildings are constructed over the next 20 years.

At least 1,115 of the units and an additional 2,600 beds for student housing would be built on Stanford’s land.

But Joe Simitian, president of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors, which must approve the expansion, said the school’s proposal is inadequate.

“If something seems too good to be true, it probably is,” he said. “It doesn’t address the underlying concerns around traffic, housing and open space.”

Stanford’s expansion is expected to lead to 9,610 more people — including students, staff and faculty — on campus each day. Santa Clara County staff called on Stanford to build 2,172 housing units and 2,600 student beds on campus.

Simitian said Stanford’s proposal lacks enough housing in part because it includes the 650-unit Graduate Residences in Escondido Village, which is under construction and set to open in the fall. That development is meant to address existing demand, he said.

The county Planning Commission will consider the project on Thursday and will eventually make a recommendation to the Board of Supervisors, where a final vote could come in the fall.

Stanford said the benefits package is the largest in its history. It comes a week after Google committed to a $1 billion housing package in an effort to build 20,000 housing units. Major Bay Area employers including Facebook, Wells Fargo and Kaiser Permanente have also committed to invest in housing.

“The Stanford community is confronting the serious regional challenges of affordability, housing availability and traffic congestion, and we’re working to do our part to promote solutions that serve Stanford and our neighbors,” Stanford President Marc Tessier-Lavigne said in a statement. “This offer reflects our values as a residential university committed to sustainable development and service to the community.”

The school would also pay $30.3 million in funds for transit improvements and spend $1.1 billion on a transit program. Stanford committed an additional $138.4 million in economic benefits for the Palo Alto Unified School District, including a $15 million innovation space.

Stanford and the school district reached the agreement in April.

“With an average per pupil allocation of $7,050, over the life of our deal, we believe we reached a mutually beneficial agreement through an interest-based bargaining approach. Stanford told us they would be true to their word and they have 100%,” said Don Austin, superintendent of the school district, in a statement.

In April, the county suspended negotiations with Stanford. The two sides have clashed over ordinances that require Stanford to pay affordable housing fees and build 16% of affordable housing in new buildings. The school wants the laws repealed and says it will still meet the requirements in the new proposal.

“So far, the university has not been inclined to fully mitigate the impact of its development,” said Simitian.

Source: sfchronicle

More Housing Delivery for Ogun Residents

The Acting Managing Director (MD) of the Ogun State Property and Investment Corporation (OPIC), Mrs. Ibiyemi Adesoye, has residents of the corporation’s readiness to deliver more affordable housing units to individuals and corporate bodies.

Adesoye spoke when she led the corporation’s management team to visit the Deputy Governor, Noimot Salako-Oyedele, in her office at Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta.

The visit was to brief the deputy governor on the activities of OPIC, identify with her and tap from her wealth of experience as a guru in property development.

The MD noted that OPIC was established in September 1984, as a self-sustaining body, to drive focused economic growth through well planned property development activities and investments, especially along major border areas.

She said: “A major attraction for all OPIC Estates is the special consideration that is accorded security, peace and comfort of residents and tenants. The estates have schools, hospitals, police posts, shopping complexes and other basic infrastructure.”

Mrs. Salako-Oyedele thanked the team for the visit, saying one of the missions of the Dapo Abiodun led-government was to provide affordable housing to the people.

The deputy governor lauded the Family Home Funds initiative, and described it as an affordable and sensible project to embrace. She noted that for real estate to thrive, land must be available at the right place, adding that the present administration would engage more public-private partnership to invest in the state.

According to the deputy governor, the Ogun State Investment Promotion Council proposed by the government would ensure that a template is put in place to legalise and ensure good guide for business to thrive.

Source: thenationonlineng

Cytonn Plans one Housing Project At A-Time

Real-estate market slowdown has seen Cytonn Investments adopt one project at-a-time strategy for its future investments.

Speaking in Nairobi when he launched its pension business, Cytonn executive director Edwin Dande said slow economic growth has hurt property sales across the real-estate market forcing it to change tack. The firm will start with the Sh4 billion Ruaka The Alma mixed-use development comprising 477 units where the first 123 units will be handed over to owners soon.

“We started in Karen, went to Kiambu and currently have 10 investor-ready mixed-use developments on our cards. Some projects were done and sold off, others are under development with the rest being prime plots secured for future developments.

“We are now concentrating on The Alma before embarking on our next project The Ridge next year and after that we will take on the next project, 18-villa development, aka Applewood Karen that sits on a 10 acres,” he said.

Mr Dande spoke when Cytonn launched its personal retirement benefits scheme product where individuals can contribute as low as Sh1,000 monthly via mobile phones.

Mr Dande said Cytonn had opted for digital platform to ease cost of managing the pension scheme as well as give Kenyans a simple and readily available online access to their savings accounts.

“The digital platform eases costs of operations for us and enables customers receive their personal accounts information instantly as well as advice on how to invest more for their retirement,” he said.

The firm also launched the Umbrella Retirement Savings Scheme targeting small and medium enterprises as well as an income drawdown fund where senior citizens can invest between Sh5 million and continue drawing a monthly stipend.

Source: businessdailyafrica

More housing choices win House approval, allowing mixes in Oregon’s single-family zoning

SALEM — Single-family homes have long dominated the housing market in Oregon.

But could a legislative proposal from one of Oregon’s most powerful lawmakers, which took a critical step forward Thursday, change that?

House Speaker Tina Kotek, D-Portland, presided over the passage of one of her top priorities this year, House Bill 2001. The bill would effectively end single-family home zoning in more than 50 Oregon cities. It passed 43-16 with bipartisan backing, and now goes to the Senate.

If HB 2001 becomes law, by July 2021, cities with more than 10,000 residents will have to allow a duplex on any lot now limited to a single-family house. By July 2022, cities with more than 25,000 residents, as well as cities and counties in the Portland metro area, will have to allow triplexes, quadplexes, townhouses and cottage clusters in single-family residential neighborhoods.

Kotek’s goal is to foster what she calls “missing middle” housing, priced for working- and middle-class households.

“It’s going to be important to have more housing choice and more housing options in all of our community, and limiting new construction in residential areas to only single-family homes is not going to help us prepare for the future and provide more housing,” Kotek said Monday, June 10.

As of the last census, nearly two-thirds of Oregon’s homes were single-family houses, and rising real estate prices have many housing advocates worried about Oregonians being “priced out” of buying a home. Townhouses and condominiums are typically less expensive alternatives to standalone houses.

The bill doesn’t outlaw single-family homes or require existing homes to be torn down or converted into duplexes.

So far, Kotek’s plan has survived criticism from local governments that see it as infringing on their right to plan their own communities. The League of Oregon Cities has been lobbying against it.

“We feel like there’s been a lot of work to address the issues of local government,” Kotek said.

Cities can apply for an extension under the bill, giving them more time to change their land use rules, if needed.

Several Democrats split with Kotek and voted against HB 2001, including Reps. Paul Holvey and Nancy Nathanson of Eugene, whose city officials have been particularly critical of the bill.

“I would really like to see this proposal be more geared toward the arterial streets or closer to bus routes, those sorts of applications, than across all lots throughout a neighborhood,” Holvey said at a committee meeting Tuesday, June 18.

Another Eugene Democrat, Rep. Julie Fahey, spoke in favor of HB 2001 on Thursday.

“I represent the neighborhoods in Eugene that are most impacted by the housing crisis,” Fahey said, adding, “We need more housing, and more affordable housing options, in our community.”

Rep. Jack Zika, R-Redmond, sat on the House committee that assisted in developing the proposal. He praised the bipartisan work that carried it through several rounds of revisions, which led him to sign on as a co-sponsor.

“This isn’t a silver bullet. It won’t fix our affordable housing crisis. But it is a heck of a tool to add these type of homes in our neighborhoods,” Zika said.

Source: salemreporter

 

Mashaba Plans to ‘Expropriate’ Abandoned Factories for Cheap Housing

Joburg Mayor Herman Mashaba wants to expropriate 37 abandoned factories that have been identified by the city and turn them into low-cost affordable housing. Mashaba says that this follows a 2018 council resolution to convert 84 city-owned properties for the same purpose.

The City of Johannesburg has identified 37 abandoned factories which it plans to expropriate in order to create low-cost housing for residents.

Herman Mashaba revealed that a 2018 council resolved to convert 84 properties owned by the city in order to create affordable homes within the inner city: “Following on this success in the inner city, the multi-party government has now identified 37 abandoned factories across the city, specifically those located in areas in desperate need of housing opportunities.”

Mashabe commented that the large sizes of the properties would be able to offer almost 3 000 housing opportunities in multi-story buildings.

The abandoned factories identified were located in areas such as Kew, Devland, Rabie Ridge and Booysens. The mayors says that 16 of the buildings were near Alexandra, providing an opportunity to reduce the density of people in the township, reports TimesLIVE.

The municipality is preparing a proposal to be heard be council in August, seeking to allow the city to begin legal proceedings to expropriate the properties.

Mashaba is adamant that the buildings will be expropriated within the confines of the law, commenting that: “For this we will utilise the fact that they are abandoned, owners are untraceable and monies owing on these properties exceed their value.“

Source: Briefly.co.za

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