The Federal Government has been urged to invest more in research and development in the area of alternative building materials and methods to ensure affordable housing for all citizens.
Besides, the central authority was asked to look beyond brick-and-mortar structures and adopt creative ways and policies to provide mass housing for its citizens.
Speaking at the 2022 edition of the Africa International Housing Show held in Abuja, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Afriland Properties Plc, Uzo Oshogwe,stated there was a need to adopt a different approach for government to achieve its aim of providing mass housing for all.
According to her, there must be a drastic change in the thought process to providing affordable housing for citizens within the low to mid Income bracket.
“We keep hearing about the 17-20 million housing deficit and it seems the story will never change. The real truth is that we can’t keep doing the same thing and expect different results. There must be a drastic change in the thought process to providing affordable housing for citizens within the low to mid Income bracket.
“There are many other local building materials and methods that significantly lower the cost of construction, and government should be proactive enough to invest in them.”
“Proper investment should be made in research and development to open up more inroads into affordable construction technology so that we can build cheaper, more affordable homes in a shorter time,” she said.
The Afriland boss restated the importance of housing and having access to finance for home ownership.
She pointed out that owning or renting a decent home is not a luxury or a nice to have, but a necessity and a human right.
Talking about access to housing finance, he stated that most financial institutions regarded it as a high-risk venture, hence the high-interest rates associated with finance for home construction or purchase.
“In this regard, the National Housing Fund (NHF) must do better to ensure more NHF contributors have access to NHF loans. There are a lot of difficulties associated with accessing finance under the NHF’s current structure. This must be addressed, as this will give an alternative option to financing home ownership,” she said.
It will be recalled that Afriland properties recently announced the launch of five new development projects as part of its plans to diversify its real estate investment portfolio. These include The Rouge, Ikoyi Lagos; Iris Court, AromireIkeja; The Emporium, Trans Amadi PH; Afriland Mall, AbuleEgba and Afriland Estate, Karmo Abuja.
With a portfolio size of over N10 billion, Afriland Properties Plc is a property management, investment, and development company, offering end-to-end services along the real estate value chain, from management to joint-venture investments.