Assessing the impact of condominium developments in increasing access to Mid-urban residents’ case study: Naalya parish, Wakiso district.
Abeja, Pauline Elizabeth
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The increasing trend of housing demand in Uganda raises much concern and interest in delving into housing delivery in the country. Millions of people continue to increase on the housing waiting list due to their continuous influx to migrate into urban areas for better opportunities. With the fixed supply of land, this arrangement compels people to engage in informal settlements. The burden of getting serviced land amidst the rapid urban growth rates, informal land markets and very limited access to housing finance among other factors create an enormous challenge for most urban residents to access housing. The National Housing Policy of 2016 has the agenda to increase the production of adequate housing for all income groups so as to meet the housing needs but unfortunately the actual production has been unsatisfactory. The introduction of The Condominium Act of 2001has provided a foundation and acted as a driving force behind liberalization enabling people to purchase housing units as well as efficiently utilizing the available land by considering the vertical space rather than spreading out in order to accommodate a relatively large number of people. The researcher centered on the middle-income class of people in urban areas as the target population that consider condominiums as a housing strategy based on their income levels and life style. The main parameters for the study included; income level of households, tenure systems of available land for construction, nature of land values, building procurement systems, participants in housing delivery and housing attributes. The study which was limited to Naalya, covered responses from the residents, property managers, land brokers and officials from real estate firms. The findings of the study revealed that majority of the households spend over 30% of their disposable income to purchase condominiums or even rent them. In addition, about 34.7% of the residents in stand-alone houses would prefer to use the option of mortgage loans to access condominiums since they are convenient. It also revealed that security is the greatest housing attribute to influence the demand for condominiums. Finally, the study also revealed a positive relationship between the land values and the supply of condominiums whereby a drastic change in land values yielded into an inelastic supply of condominiums on the market. The study recommended that a joint initiative by the government and private developers in the form of public private partnerships can have a positive impact on the housing industry. It was also recommended that financial institutions issue out condominium inventory loans to real estate developers so that they can accommodate more projects simultaneously within a specified time frame. In addition, real estate developers were encouraged to extend the payment period in order to reduce the housing cost burden to a level below 30% so that residents can have more purchasing power to meet other human basic needs.