A study of housing finance agencies in Nairobi, with special reference to their role in low-income housing
Housing problems of one form or another exist in countries allover the world. Howeve r-: the magnitude, the scope, dimension, the fundamental causes vary from one country to another. Kenya, like other countries has come to realise that housing is an issue that is complex in nature and that it is too central to national development to be left solely to private initiatives. J As such since Independence the Government has been very much involved in providing solutions to the problems of housing. Other than making the policy the Government has made many initiatives to finance housing. Since it is not possible to adequately solve these problems the Government has involved many other finance agencies to try to ease the problems of housing. fected provision of housing and especially housing for The study focuses on the role of the housing finance agencies in provision of housing for Nairobi population. There exists problems regarding the policy frameworkwithin which these agencies operate. There also exists a problem in the terms and conditions laid down by these finance agencies. These terms and conditions have aflow- income groups. Having noted the above proplems the author examined the activities of eight selected--::£inanceagencies since Independence. These housing finance institutions consist - vii - of both private and public finance agencies. A special attention was paid on the policy made by the Government and also the terms and conditions laid down by the Housing Financing Institutions. The study established that the policy has been vague and unrealistic and has not met the housing need of the majority of the Nairobi residents who include the low-income groups. The policy statement is not accompanied by programmes and finances and the agency to implement these programmes. As a result most of the projects implemented have favoured the middle and l high income groups. It is the author's contention that these terms and conditions are too high and discriminating against the low-income groups. The terms are highly restrictive and tend to eliminate a majority of the low-income urban population who cannot meet the requirements. In view of the above problems the study recommended that there should be a clear cut policy on low-income housing. This should be accompanied by programmes and finances for implementation. Housing standards and design should be compatible with the incomes of the urban poor popu Lat Lon . The housing cooperatives who have a great potential should be encouraged.