Housing Finance in Rwanda

Overview

This profile is also available in French here.

To download a pdf version of the full 2019 Rwanda country profile, click here.

The Republic of Rwanda is located in the East African region, bordering the countries of Uganda, Burundi, Tanzania, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Rwanda’s economy is projected to grow to 7.8 percent in 2019 and eight percent in 2020, supported by export growth resulting from the ‘Made in Rwanda’ policy, public infrastructure investments, and continued policy reforms aimed at driving long term development. The country is ranked as the second easiest place to do business in Africa and 29th globally.

Rwanda’s banking sector has 11 commercial banks, four microfinance banks, one development bank and one cooperative bank. In the past decade, the country has made significant improvements in financial inclusion. As of 2016, approximately 89 percent of the adult population (or 5.2 million adults) had access to financial services compared to 48 percent in 2008.

According to the National Institute for Statistics, Rwanda’s population is estimated to be 12.4 million in 2019 and it is growing at 2.4 percent a year. It has been estimated that in the period between 2018 and 2032, Kigali’s population is likely to double, from 367 000 households to around 721 000. To ensure sustainable development and growth of the capital, up to 137 000 new houses will be needed to clear the housing backlog. Critical to this, however, is the need to develop housing that is affordable to the city and country’s population. This will require construction of homes at low cost, which could reduce the house prices as well as profitability.

Rwanda’s Ministry of Infrastructure recognises housing as the core of sustainable urban development. Government efforts to stimulate investment in the housing sector have been focused on large-scale developers and international companies, though majority of housing development is undertaken by smaller developers and individual households.

The Government of Rwanda, through the Ministry of Infrastructure, has developed the Urbanisation and Rural Settlement Sector Strategic Plan 2018-2024. The Strategic Plan focuses on integrated human settlement planning and coordination; development of the City of Kigali and secondary towns, creation of liveable, well-serviced, connected, compact, green and productive urban and rural settlements with a cultural identity; access to social and affordable housing, and informal settlements upgrading.

Housing is a key contributor to Rwanda’s economy, contributing a significant share to the country’s GDP. The real estate sector also has high potential for employment and job creation. Demand for real estate, especially affordable housing, is also on the rise due to the increased population growth and a growing middle class.

Find out more information on Rwanda’s housing finance sector, including key stakeholders, important policies and housing affordability:


Each year, CAHF publishes its Housing Finance in Africa Yearbook. The profile above is from the 2019 edition, which has up-to-date profiles for 55 African countries.

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