Housing Finance in Congo, Democratic Republic of the

Overview

This profile is also available in French here.

To download a pdf version of the full 2020 Democratic Republic of Congo country profile, click here.

The DRC located in central Africa, is Africa’s largest copper producer and the world’s largest cobalt producer. Despite its wealth in natural resources, majority of its population remains extremely poor. The DRC struggles with many socioeconomic problems such as ongoing conflicts, mismanagement of resources, food insecurity and, most recently, the COVID-19 pandemic. International investors are often deterred by its political instability and high inflation rate.

The DRC, the second largest country in Africa has a population of about 86 790 million. Its major cities are growing at a rate of approximately 4.7 percent a year and urbanisation has reached 40percent since 2015. This urban dynamic has led to  a related surge in building and housing supply. Housing demand in the DRC outweighs housing supply, and the backlog is estimated at about 4million units countrywide. An estimated 77.5% of the urban population lives in slums.  The government has responded to the housing deficit by implementing supply-side interventions with particular attention to the cities of Kinshasa and Lubumbashi.

The financial sector includes 19 licensed banks, a national insurance company, one development bank, and a savings fund. The country also has smaller institutions facilitating access to finance. Regardless the existence of finance institutions, about 65 percent of the population saves but only 4.7 percent do it through a bank.  Research has shown that DRC’s housing finance situation indicated that the DRC is one of the countries in the world with the least financial market proliferation, as only 26 percent of the adult population have any form of financial account, and only 15 percent have an account with an institution. This denotes a low level of access to finance and to financial institutions that could facilitate housing loans.

Housing demand is affected by high lending rates of about 26.7 percent, making it hard for most Congolese to access financial services. Ninety percent of workers make less than FC5 691 (purchasing power parity US$3.10) a day and are therefore excluded from access to housing finance. An analysis of housing affordability indicated that the cheapest affordable home built by a developer cost FC75 880 000 (US$40 000) which is even unaffordable for the average medical doctor who earns FC1 081 290 (US$570) a month. Even with such a relatively high salary, only 30 percent of this income bracket can afford to build their own house. Because of this situation, housing supply is limited, and only accessible to the elite minority.

Find out more information on the housing finance sector of the Democratic Republic of Congo, including key stakeholders, important policies and housing affordability:


Each year, CAHF publishes its Housing Finance in Africa Yearbook. The profile above is from the 2020 edition, which has up-to-date profiles for 55 African countries.

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