Are you a Nigerian worker and a contributor to the National Housing Fund (NHF)? Do you desire to partake in the newly-introduced federal government’s rent-to-own housing scheme? If your answer to the above is ‘yes’, then the following information is for you.
The scheme is designed for Nigerian workers who are regular contributors to NHF, which mobilizes long-term funds from workers, financial institutions and the federal government to advance housing loans to contributors at a single-digit interest rate. Over the years, most workers have not been able to get houses through the NHF because they are unaffordable.
However, the rent-to-own scheme is set to ease the process of home ownership and significantly increase the housing stock in the country.
According to the managing director, Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), Ahemed Musa Dangiwa, beneficiaries under this scheme do not need to make any equity contribution towards obtaining housing loan. “You enter into the house as a tenant and over years, it becomes your own just like owner occupier basis,” he said.
He said the scheme does not require applicants going through the Primary Mortgage Bank (PMB). “You just find the estate that you want and you enter there in collaboration with your employer and then the house becomes your own,” he said.
The FMBN boss said the bank has funded estates all over the country for qualified applicants to choose their houses from, after which they will be profiled by the FMBN office in the state where the property is located. The application is afterwards sent to the head office in Abuja for approval, he said.
The rent-to-own housing scheme is an initiative of FMBN aimed at making home ownership easier, accessible and affordable for Nigerian workers. The scheme eliminates the burden of equity contributions by workers for housing loan as beneficiaries are required to live in the FMBN property as tenants while making a monthly or yearly rent payment spread over periods not exceeding 30 years, after which the properties become theirs.
To ensure affordability, each property will have a maximum value of ₦15 million and attract a single digit interest rate of nine percent (9%) on the price of the property on an annuity basis.
The project, which will be implemented in phases will kick-start the pilot phase with 3,000 houses. Zubaida Umar, Group Head, Corporate Communications, FCMB, said in a recent statement that the bank will partner with reputable estate developers for the construction of cost-effective housing stock nationwide to ensure effective implementation of the project, adding that “Properties that are planned for the rent-to-own scheme are existing estates that are funded by FMBN nationwide and non-funded estates.”
Dangiwa had told reporters earlier that the bank would utilize abandoned estates by transferring them to the scheme, stressing that “any worker who collects salary should be able to live in his own home and pay conveniently over periods as long as 30 years.”