The Development Bank of Rwanda (BRD) and partners are working hard to launch the construction of Ndera – Gasabo housing units where low and middle-income earners have started applying for a house.
The bank, in partnership with Bank of Africa are preparing all requirements to kick start construction of 1750 housing units in Ndera sector, Gasabo district by September this year.
The project estimated at a total $68 million upon completion will cover 18.6 hectares and is intended to provide houses to city dwellers with monthly earning ranging between Rwf 261,000 and Rwf 1.2 million (either from private or public sector).
First phase of the project will cost $12.4 Million and is expected to be accomplished within one year if all goes as planned.
According to BRD officials, people who are eligible will soon get a form to fill, so that their application can be examined.
“We shall soon disseminate a form on Irembo platform where interested and qualifying applicants can go and give information about the house they need and can afford,” Regine Mukamusinga, head of housing and infrastructure development at BRD told KT Press on Monday.
Mukamusinga was appearing on Ubyumva Ute, a talk show that discussed affordable housing progress and challenges in Rwanda at KT Radio – a sister media channel to KT Press.
She said, those who will qualify for the houses will have to pay 5% of the house as a requirement for the project to kick start. Later on, the potential owner of the house will have to pay the remaining sum at once.
At least 80% of the housing units will cost between Rwf 27 Million and Rwf 35 Million while the remaining 20% will include middle and high range housing units.
The units will include two and three bedrooms respectively built in several apartment blocks of 4 stories maximum.
BRD has contracted Groupe Palmeraie Developpement (GPD), a Maroccan company to develop the Ndera housing units.
From Morocco to Rwanda
The 1300 housing units are part of a project that was agreed in a memorandum of understanding signed between Rwanda and Morocco during the visit of King Mohammed VI of Morocco to Rwanda in 2016.
The project will include 5000 affordable housing units that will be built in several areas across Kigali after securing enough land for it.
Rwanda has a target of building 15,000 housing units by 2024 to bridge the gap of housing which is estimated to be around 350,000 housing units countrywide.
BRD which is expected to invest $250 Million in affordable housing project-including $ 150 million from World Bank, is working with banks which are interested to borrow from it and lend to their clients. The bank does not do retail banking.
“We have set a number of conditions for any bank that is willing to work with us on the project,” Jean Claude Iliboneye, Acting Head of Investment at BRD.
Among other requirements, Iliboneye said, the bank will have to agree to give to its clients in this project a loan at 10% interest rate.
Currently, a mortgage loan in local commercial banks goes up 19%.
For this reason in many cases, foreign banks become an option when it comes to affordable housing.
Meanwhile, Ndera housing project is among six projects in the pipeline, at different stages of implementation.
Others include; Rugarama in Nyarugenge where 2,674 housing units will be developed on 42 hectares at a cost of $131 million.
Kimisange with 150 housing units of middle range is expected to cost $ 60 million.
Another 800 housing units will be developed on 12 hectares in Busanza-Kicukiro district by Community Housing Limited (CHL) once they fulfill all requirements.
In Busanza, the same arrangement of payment may also be applied.
The Kagarama middle range houses which will have 224 units is also expected to kick start.
Despite confusion of words by the general public, Iliboneye said that the real definition of affordable housing is that one which costs between 30% to 40% of one’s earning.