Shelter Afrique to fund set up of over 1,000 low-cost housing units

Friday March 20 2015

Shelter Afrique is set to finance construction of over 1,000 low-cost housing units developed by Karibu Homes at Riverview Estate, in Athi River.  FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Shelter Afrique is set to finance construction of over 1,000 low-cost housing units developed by Karibu Homes at Riverview Estate, in Athi River. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By NATION CORRESPONDENT
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Shelter Afrique is set to finance construction of over 1,000 low-cost housing units developed by Karibu Homes at Riverview Estate, in Athi River.

The 1,074 units will be built at a cost of Sh2.9 billion.

Speaking at the ground-breaking ceremony Lands, Housing and Urban Development Cabinet secretary Charity Ngilu said the government has a target of constructing 300,000 units by 2017 and has invited the private sector to assist in achieving it.

HUGE GAP

“We have a huge gap in meeting the annual demand for affordable housing,” Ms Ngilu said. “Our target as a ministry is to construct 300,000 housing by 2017 and this is a task that will require active involvement by all stakeholders. As a government, we will ensure that the necessary enabling environment, including provision of the requisite infrastructure is put in place to ensure that this goal is achieved,” she added.

Shelter Afrique Managing Director James Mugerwa said the firm would continue to expand low cost housing projects.

“I have always felt that the housing sector would benefit largely from scalability; projects of scale; this is something that I am very passionate about and this is something I can assure you Shelter Afrique will be involved in going forward,” he said .

Ms Ngilu also met stakeholders in the housing sector including County governments, Shelter Afrique, Housing Finance, the National Housing Corporation, among others to chart the way forward in creating affordable housing.

INTEREST RATES

She noted that high mortgage interest rates, land and the high cost of building material, were prohibitive to affordable housing.  

“It is necessary for the ministry as a policy maker to engage developers and financiers on ways interest rates and the overall cost of construction can be brought down,” she said.