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BusinessDay
Nigeria's leading finance and market intelligence news report.

Family Homes Funds, French agency partner to invest in students housing

A new partnership between Nigeria’s Family Homes Funds Limited (FHFL) and French Development Agency or ‘Agence Française de Développement’ (AFD), is out to invest in quality students housing in Nigeria.

BusinessDay gathered that, through the partnership, FHFL will support Nigerian universities to increase supply of good quality and affordable housing for students through the development of up to 20,000 bed-spaces over the next five years.

Authorities of FHFL who disclosed this in a statement obtained by BusinessDay in Lagos added that the partnership would carry out a detailed study ahead of a substantial investment in students housing across the country through their Rental Housing Fund.

The study will assist FHFL to accurately assess the need and collect data required to develop a sustainable delivery and financing structure for University Students Accommodation in Nigeria.

The study, which begins in November 2021, will last for 20 weeks, followed by consideration of the first phase of the programme. It will be done in collaboration with Nigerian universities.

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It is expected that the outcome will greatly improve the living condition of more than two million students who, according to the Nigeria Universities Commission (NUC), are currently enrolled in universities across the country.

According to the managing director, Family Homes Funds Limited, Femi Adewole, the huge shortage of decent affordable housing for university students is often missing in discussions about affordable housing.

“If we are to really harness the boundless potential of our young people, especially those who are acquiring critical skills in our universities, we must place them in living environment that can condition them for excellence and leadership in a competitive global environment,” Adewole said.

He noted that significant amount of capital is required as a major focus to create an attractive opportunity for private capital through the local capital market to invest in students housing, adding that the study would help to build the critical foundations for that to happen.

“The Family Homes Funds’ vision for the students’ housing programme is to create a modern, high-quality living environment for the Nigerian students through deployment of technology and communications, innovative energy solutions that include solar sources and leverage standardization to enhance affordability.

‘’We are thankful to AFD for their support on this initiative. It will not only ensure that we can contribute to the development of the education sector in a significant way, but also the partnership has had a catalytic effect of crowding-in further resources and relationships for students housing,’’ he revealed.

The AFD has been active in Nigeria for 13 years now, providing financing solutions for the development of a competitive economy that creates jobs, wealth, inclusive and resilient development.

The FHF is a social housing initiative promoted by the federal government as part of its social intervention programme. It aims to invest up to N1.3 trillion in promoting the development of 500,000 houses for low income earners. About 1.5 jobs are expected to be created in the process.

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