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Binay pushes lower interest for housing

[ Malaya.com.ph ] November 12, 2010
Housing czar Vice President Jejomar Binay is drawing up measures toward addressing the housing backlog that now stands at 3.7 million units.
Binay, chairman of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC), said interest rates for housing loans, for example, could still be lowered from the current 6 percent for units that cost P400,000 and below.
Binay said in an interview at the sidelines of yesterday’s inauguration of the Accenture facility in Fort Bonifacio that government is hoping to triple to 150,000 the targeted housing units to be built in 2011.
This number includes units for relocated informal settlers, said Binay.
Binay said the government would encourage more development of socialized housing units at a lower cost of P70,000 to P80,000 per unit from the current P100,000.
"The low-cost housing segment addresses middle-end market where the units cost between P600,000 and P3 million. What we need is more socialized housing, with units of less than P100,000," he said.
Private developers, he said, are doing their part by complying with the requirement of allocating 20 percent of their projects to socialized housing.
But Binay said the interest rates can be tweaked further to 5 percent for housing loans of P300,000 and below and 4 percent for P200,000 and below.
He also said HUDCC is asking the active participation of local governments in addressing the housing gap, especially outside Metro Manila.
"What the local government can do is to provide the lots as their counterpart because what makes housing expensive is the house and lot as a package," Binay said.
He suggested the creation of a Department of Shelter to take care of problems on boundaries and titling of properties.
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