Housing and human settlements offer a significant opportunity for South Africa’s effort towards radical economic transformation.
South Africa’s deeds registry includes approximately 6,2 million residential properties. Almost a third of these (29%) were financed by government as part of the government’s national housing programme. Transformation through the housing sector, however, faces three significant challenges: (1) limited supply all over and a housing gap for the emerging middle class; (2) declining access to credit for lower income earners; and (3) a significant cohort of first time homebuyers without equity or experience in the property market. This presentation argues that housing policy should explicitly support resale markets to leverage existing equity in the market for entry-level households. Transaction support would reduce the incentive for informal, unfinanced transactions, and would increase the value of transactions for both buyers and sellers. The presentation was given at the Wits University Faces of the City Lecture Series, in May 2018.
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