More than 200 houses will be ready for their new owners to occupy in the next four months through the government’s affordable housing project, the spokesman Col (Rtd) Cyrus Oguna has said.
The State targets to complete and allocate 228 units by September this year.
The houses are part of the 1,370 phase one homes under construction in Park Road, Nairobi.
Col (Rtd) Oguna revealed this during a media briefing on Thursday, adding that other similar programmes in Shauri Moyo and Starehe (8,500 houses) and Kibra B (4,400 houses) will begin soon.
“The affordable housing programme will target people in the income brackets classified as social housing (below Sh19,000), low cost (Sh20,000 to Sh49,999), mortgage gap (Sh50,000 to Sh149,999) and middle to high income (Sh150,000 and above),” said the Government spokesman.
He explained that the various brackets attract different interest rates with those in the social housing group paying a levy of three percent to own a house, and five to seven percent for the low cost and mortgage gap segments. The rates are fixed, he added.
On allocation, Col (Rtd) Oguna said a computer ballot process will be used to eliminate possibilities of human intervention, which could result in foul play.
“A number of partners have also come on board to ensure the success of the affordable housing programme, with 25 counties so far signing an MoU with the Government for its implementation,” he added.
Private landowners have offered some 121 potential project sites, comprising of over 11,000 acres of land, which, the spokesman said, construction may proceed once the parties have signed agreements.
He stressed that the recently instituted Kenya Mortgage Refinance Company (KMRC) will play a key role in actualising home ownership for those already enrolled in the programme.
“The National Housing Corporation (NHC) will put up 3,000 units in the 25 counties, while the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) will partner with the State Department of Housing to construct 100,000 affordable units across the country; all in efforts to actualise the affordable housing programme.”
He, at the same time, clarified that the projects will continue beyond 2022 as long as need for housing exists.
Col (Rtd) Oguna further revealed the Government’s plan to offer tax waivers to developers of the houses, as well as subsidy on inputs and fast-tracking of processes.
He said controversial housing levy, which has been challenged in court, is more a contribution than it is a tax.
“It will remain a voluntary contribution for anyone (like me) who wishes to own a house in case the court does away with it,” he said.
During a recent tour of the Park Road project in the company of Fijian Prime Minister, Frank Bainimarama, the Housing Principal Secretary, Mr Charles Hinga said that 227,524 people have so far registered for the programme.
The PS indicated that even if one doesn’t get a house during a specific assigned period, they will still get a house, as there are numerous of the affordable housing projects coming up, with the intention of bringing decency to Kenyans housing systems.