July 8, 2014 – The Lagos State Government on Tuesday effected a change in its housing policy through introduction of rent to own specifically for artisans, who are members of the informal sector.
Under the new scheme, the artisans are exempted from paying the 30 percent equity contribution which is mandatory for those lucky to win houses in the Lagos Homes Ownership Scheme.
Flagging off the programme in the state, Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola took his time to explain that by just contributing N55,000 every month the artisan will be able to live in a three bedroom flat and pay rent as his contribution, and N35,000 monthly for one bedroom flat depending on the area.
He said the 30 percent equity contribution may not apply since they make their income almost on a daily basis.
Speaking on the scheme, Commissioner for Housing, Mr. Bosun Jeje explained that the equity contribution has not being waved entirely.
“Like the governor just said, we are coming up with another programme, that is the one we call rent to own. By the time we announce it that 30 percent equity contribution will have to be stepped down. When you pay your rent, it will be in form of contributing to the payment of the houses. We are going to announce the process that it is going to take”, he said.
The commissioner explained that government discovered that the houses the state is building are both for the formal and informal sector but that only the formal sector that can boast of salaries every month for 30 percent equity contribution.
“So we looked at the informal sector and we said let us call the informal sector, all of us are paying taxes, we cannot all be collecting salaries, that formed the basis of today’s meeting. The informal sector must benefit from Lagos HOMS, they don’t have a salary, they don’t have a structure that they can rely on, we have to call them and then make an arrangement of how they will benefit from this scheme”, he said.