Chudi Kalu, co-founder, UNHomes, said this in Lagos at the launch of the company’s social housing initiative.
Kalu, who decried the increasing level of housing problem in Africa and the high rent being charged by landlords, especially in the cities, said it was depressing for landlords to ask tenants to pay two, three or four-year rent at once, adding that “the mission of his company is to turn ordinary families into home owners through a pro-active social housing initiative.
“Our goal is to deliver 1 million housing units by 2020, solve housing poverty through creative mortgage solutions. UNHomes plans to achieve these by building decent and affordable housing for Africans and also empower people.”
Kalu further explained that “UNHomes Limited is a social enterprise that gives under-privileged families from anywhere in the world a chance to own a house in order to improve the welfare of families and to develop new communities.
“UNHomes is full of solutions to the housing crisis in Africa. Housing solution runs by innovative, grassroots projects and organisations that are working to empower, educate, and build houses for families in developing or underdeveloped economies using the power of network.”
Speaking on ‘The role of media in solving housing poverty in Africa,’ he said, “Africa’s housing problem is bigger than an individual and only a network of Africans can solve it. A significant problem we face is what we can call ‘Housing Poverty’. A reasonable percentage of African population lives in slums.
“The New York Times estimates that Lagos is now at least 22 million in population, surpassing Cairo as Africa’s largest city, but two thirds of the population are slum dwellers, meaning that 14 million Lagosians are slum dwellers. The situation in Lagos is an issue of concern also as about 1.2 million Lagosians are landlords while the remaining 18.8 million live as tenants.”
The co-founder said UNHomes was formed to galvanise Africans with the sole aim of influencing the choice of houses and home ownership structure available, help Africans become landlords in principle and empower Africans financially through its social housing initiatives.
“The strategy is to make everyone a landlord through a social network thereby making the fight to ensure every family owns a decent house is achieved with ease. Hence, we adopt a proactive measure that allows everyone who desires a house to play a part in the marketing process,” he said.
This Social Housing Conference is organised by United Nations, World Bank, ArkBridge Integrated Limited, SME Funds, UNFCC to create an amazing opportunity for Africa to become landlords using a simple and dynamic approach to housing.