by Adewale Dosunmu
Housing and accommodation in Lagos are notorious for being limited and unaffordable. With a population of about 20 million, the state is laden with an estimated housing deficit of three million. This housing gap requires tremendous effort to bridge and thankfully, the Lagos State government is hard at work. The Rent-to-Own Scheme was established not just to provide accommodation but as a major means of economic empowerment for residents of the State, especially young people.
Historically, the state government has expressed its concerns regarding residents’ housing challenges, with previous interventions like The Lagos Home Ownership Mortgage Scheme (LagosHOMS) launched about eight years ago. Prior interventions placed challenging demands on the recipients like the payment of 30% equity contribution which many interested homeowners could not afford.
However, the Rent-to-Own housing scheme requires individual subscribers to pay only 5% of the cost of the housing unit as a commitment fee and the balance is spread over a period of 10 years with minimal interest. The new initiative was launched with 4,355 housing units it inherited from the mortgage scheme and has currently allocated about 650 original units to its special target of first time home buyers.
These houses came from 12 housing estates including Sir Michael Otedola Estate, Odoragunsen, Epe, Odo Onasa, Agbowa, Igbogbo Housing Estate, Ikorodu, Egan -Igando Housing estate, Alimosho, Lateef Jakande Gardens, Igando also in Alimosho. Other estates for the scheme are CHOIS City, Agbowa, Olaitan Mustapha Housing Estate, Ojokoro, Iponri Estate, Surulere, Sangotedo Estate, Eti-Osa and Ajara Estate, Badagry.
The Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration in the state has not only strengthened the scheme but has increased the momentum of project delivery. The implementation of the housing scheme is carried out by the Lagos Mortgage Board responsible for ensuring that homes are allocated and made accessible to first-time home-owners, and generating a conducive environment for affordable mortgages. Furthermore, the Rent-to-own scheme is credited with reducing the housing deficit in the state and promoting mortgage culture.
Apart from the Rent-to-Own scheme, the Sanwo-Olu administration also completed and delivered housing for other residents who are existing property owners. Among them were the Courtland Luxury Villas, Igbokushu in Lekki and Lekki Apartments located at Freedom Way Junction, Lekki Phase1. These were birthed by a Joint Venture project between Lagos State Development and Property Corporation (LSDPC) and Messrs Le Grande Property Development Company. The Luxury Villas which sits on 28,321 square metres of land comprises 120 units of 4-bedroom maisonettes and a boy’s quarter. Interestingly, it boasts amenities such as a swimming pool, ample car park, community hall, 24-hour security, 5-aside football pitch, as well as water and sewage treatment plant.