On housing

Following the tragedy in London, Mordanicus has a great article on cooperative housing as means of delivering housing. An article by Rasna Warah titled authorities do not care enough about death traps called homes looks at housing for the poor and the apparent failure by the public bodies to ensure safety standards are met.

The argument that countries such as ours do not have the funds to invest in social housing is not supported by facts. If the country can invest in a rail that is going nowhere and does not make economic sense, they can invest in social housing.

The private sector cannot deliver social housing. The main motive is profit and to expect them to provide social housing is not any different from expecting milk from a bull. It is not going to happen. The public sector must intervene either as the provider of public housing or by providing incentives to private developers to provide social housing. If the government is going to let the private sector to provide social housing, they must ensure all standards of safety are met and that the housing provided is adequate.

In a housing market that is not fully developed as ours, the entry of the government in housing provision wouldn’t destabilize the market. It would be important to map out the very vulnerable who should get social housing. This should be done to ensure those who are really vulnerable get the houses.

Since housing does take a big portion of households earnings, there is need to provide affordable housing for all income groups.