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HOUSING

Applicants for affordable housing line up for first 228 units

Each of the two-bedroom houses under phase one, on 60 square metres will be sold at Sh2 million while the 3-bedroom unit on a 80 square meters will cost Sh3 million.

In Summary
  • Yesterday, 290,000 applicants had been made on the Boma Yangu portal after a system upgrade that was completed last Saturday.
  • Even so, only those who have contributed a minimum deposit of 12.5 per cent are eligible for the draw. Only 300 applicants had met this threshold by January.
An aerial view of the affordable housing units in Mavoko
An aerial view of the affordable housing units in Mavoko
Image: DOUGLAS OKIDDY

The first 228 housing units under the affordable housing project are ready for grabs, even as questions still linger on the allocation process.

Yesterday, 290,000 applicants had been made on the Boma Yangu portal after a system upgrade that was completed last Saturday.

''Following a security upgrade on the Boma Yangu website, we are pleased to advise that services have been restored,'' a mobile phone message sent to applicants read.

 
 

Speaking to the Star on phone, principal secretary, Housing and Urban Development Charles Hinga said the ministry is finalising on titles with the National Land Commission (NLC) in preparation for the allocation exercise.

''Units in the first category in Park Road, Nairobi are ready for occupancy. We are addressing the titling issues with NLC before embarking on allocation,'' Hinga said.

Even so, only those who have contributed a minimum deposit of 12.5 per cent are eligible for the draw. Only 300 applicants had met this threshold by January.

The allocation of the few houses to the many Kenyans who will have paid for housing has been a sticking issue, with the government settling on balloting system, with those who miss out converting their money into pension savings.

During the Jamhuri Day celebration, President Uhuru Kenyatta was forced to direct that housing levy be made voluntary after public outcry that culminated in legal battles against the deduction of the 1.5 per cent Housing Development Levy from workers' salaries.

The second phase of category one housing project along Park Road consisting of 260 units, 3-bed room is expected to be ready by June.

Each of the two-bedroom houses under phase one, on 60 square metres will be sold at Sh2 million while the 3-bedroom unit on a 80 square meters will cost Sh3 million.

 
 

The second category consisting of 882 housing units of one, two and three bedrooms units in the area are respected to be ready by October, bringing the total number of units in Panagani to 1,370 units.

The price is comparatively lower to market prices, with a property agents like BuyRent Kenya selling 2-bedroom house on 45 square meters in Panagani at least Sh7.1 million, Sh4.8 million for one bedroom and Sh11.6 million for three bedroom.

According to 2019 Q4 housing index by the Kenya Bankers Association, property prices maintained a downward trend in the fourth quarter of 2019 on tight liquidity, but trends are expected to reverse following the repeal of interest cap law in November.

Other projects lined up for the programme includes the 190 units in Shauri Moyo, Kisumu, Mavoko sustainable project in Machakos among others

The affordable housing scheme, which seeks to deliver 500,000 houses countrywide in five years is among President Uhuru Kenyatta's Big 4 agenda. Others are universal health coverage, food security and manufacturing.

The National Treasury allocated Sh10.5 billion towards the housing agenda in the current financial year, a 62 per cent increase from the Sh6.5 billion allocated in the 2018/2019 financial year.