Our Stand (42) —
Affordability is the ease by which a house can either be purchased or rented. Families that pay more than 25% of their income on housing may be living in unaffordable housing.
Cities like Lagos and Abuja may face rapid growth driven by annual urbanization rate that is not least than 3.5% and these are cities increasingly defined by informal housing typologies, the urban poor have to seek for ways to house themselves.
Informal settlements are seen as either a problem because of how they look or they are not properly planned or they do not look good. People have put together these structures to be able to shelter themselves, irrespective of how negatively or disorderly they have been arranged. So, informal settlements can be seen as a problem on the side of lack of proper sanitation issues and are also a solution provided by people to house themselves.
A sustainable city should be one that is inclusive, not an exclusive that will ensure that only the rich live in good locations and those who are on low income are kept out of sight or isolated. Real estate experts should engage with the planning professionals on the issue of land use in the country, this will have a real impact on the quality of life of the low income earners.
If the impact of the issues in affordability is examined in-depth, an economic way of providing affordable houses for the masses and these solutions can be implemented in providing affordable housing. The more we look at the problem, the more we may be able to find solutions to them.
The issues in affordable housing include, housing the nation which has always been a challenge for successive governments and the issues include Land Acquisition which is a main component of shelter, the building materials problem which could be said contributes to 50-60% of the total construction costs, housing finance and interest rates and finally, the income of the people. These are the determinants of what the masses can afford.