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Lagos To Address Housing Deficit Through Land Reforms–Sanwo-Olu

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, represented by the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Tayo Bambose-Martins, says the ongoing land reforms show the firm commitment of the government towards addressing the challenge of housing deficit in Lagos State.

The governor disclosed this at the just concluded Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria, Lagos State Chapter, on Thursday.

He said, “We appreciate that a dearth of affordable housing affects the low income citizens who pay an inconsistent share of their income for housing or live in inadequate housing that is hard to reach from their employment and access to health and other social services.

“Since the inception of this administration, we have commissioned more than 15 affordable and decent housing projects and delivered more than 3,526 housing units across the State.

“In addition, there are other housing projects that are ongoing which we are committed to delivering before the end of the first tenure of this administration. Most of these projects are being developed in conjunction with private developers and we will continue to explore the public-private partnership model in order to continue to enjoy the robust benefit it offers to the sector and its effectiveness in delivering more housing units to meet the demand of an increasing population. Our ongoing land reform is our firm commitment to addressing the challenge of housing deficits in Lagos state.

“We have strengthened our policy of delivering homes to Lagosians through a convenient mortgage system tagged Rent-To-Own. Also, the monthly rent payment policy to ease the hardship usually experienced by the people, especially low income earners, is expected to be a win-win situation for both the tenants and landlords as it would create a steady stream of income for property owners. I wish to use this opportunity to solicit the support of property owners and stakeholders to embrace the policy and ensure that it succeeds.”

According to the governor, to manage the activities of stakeholders in the real estate sector, the law that established the Lagos State Real Estate Regulatory Authority was activated, and the agency was saddled with investigating complaints and petitions against licensed and unlicensed real estate practitioners and property developers, and imposed sanctions in accordance with the law.

Sanwo-olu urged serious-minded investors to join hands with the state for a speedy resolution of the housing deficit challenge, reiterating that the investment opportunities in the sector were huge and rewarding.

The Chairman of REDAN Lagos, Bamidele Onalaja, noted that real estate investment in Nigeria had become one of the major investments attracting both local and foreign investors.

He said, “From the commercial city of Lagos to every nook and cranny of the nation, several individuals and companies now engage in real estate investment.

However, the industry is faced with unprecedented challenges, such as inflation which has led to a spike in the cost of building materials and the adverse effect of global warming, which has seen a reduction of available land especially in Lagos state due to flooding and erosion.

“For this reason and more, there is every need to secure the future of the real estate industry. It’s a given that real estate is the only secured investment for an assured future. However, with the challenges facing the industry globally, there is a need for us to think outside the box on ways to tackle these crises.”

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