The Economic Argument for 'Affordable' Housing: Understanding the Impact on the Economy

Delivered by David Gardner, consultant to CAHF, at the Annual Conference of the African Union for Housing Finance (AUHF) and International Union of Housing Finance (IUHF) in Cape Town on 5 November 2019, this presentation lays out the economic argument for housing as set out in the housing value chain, and outlines the impact of housing on African economies, drawing on research undertaken by CAHF in South Africa, Kenya, Rwanda, Nigeria and Uganda. The presentation then takes a closer look at the economic impact of ‘affordable’ housing that targets the bottom end of the income pyramid, with data from Nigeria and Kenya. Using CAHF’s housing cost benchmarking methodology, the costs of building a standard ‘affordable’ house is compared across countries. Finally the presentation looks at how we might measure the economic impact of subsidies, using the South African example.

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