By Ebenezer Anukam
Experts across the Housing sector have continued to issue a rallying cry for new innovations to solve the impending housing deficit in Nigeria. Incremental housing is seen as one of such drivers to affordable housing and a boost to further bridge the Housing deficit gap. This was one of the focal points during deliberations at the just concluded REALL Discussion and special Networking event held in the Abuja with the Theme: End user Finance for Affordable Housing in Abuja.
With the Housing deficit in Nigeria skyrocketing, experts have continued to clamor for more innovative channels to be explored to drive Affordable Housing in the Country. This is further accentuated by the fact that the gap between the poor and the rich continues to widen, parri passu the economic trepidations being experienced in the country. This was one of the areas of discussion at the just REALL Discussion and special Networking event held in Abuja with the Theme: End user Finance for Affordable Housing in Abuja. The event featured various enlightening sessions, as experts exchanged ideas on various ways to grow end user finance in Housing.
The intent of this is to make housing affordable to the ‘Urban poor’ with particular reference to Abuja. This involves creating a unique framework for accessing housing finance, with flexible repayment for rent-to-own schemes so that the low-income earners can repay at their own pace. This is so that the cost of housing could be reduced while recognizing that poor urban families already build and extend their own dwellings incrementally in response to their needs and the availability of resources.
The event featured various sessions characterized by eye-opening deliberations. Notable speakers at the event include Olufemi Adewole, Independent Consultant and Author of the EUF Report, Amos Mthembo, senior Programme Manager at REALL, Abiola Olanipekun, Principal Consultant at Banah Grace Nigeria Ltd among others.
Amos Mthembo, A senior Programme Manager at REALL, hammered on the need to understand the uniqueness of different marketing segments before creating Housing products for them. This is based on the fact that different market segments have differential factors that need to be taken into consideration. One of the speakers, Abiola Olanipekun, a Principal Consultant, harped on the need for proper awareness campaigns to properly educate end users on viable housing finance options.
She also emphasized on the need to understand the pain points of different market segments, mostly low-income earners, so as to design the right housing products for them. Other areas discussed in the course of the event include sustainability and climate friendly homes, end-user perspectives in Housing Finance and a right approach to designing the right housing products for low income earners.