Nigeria @60: FG Housing initiatives since independence

In assessing the Nigeria housing sector looking through the past 60 years, one could see that the sector has not been given the needed attention. However, its glaring that the government has been able to make frantic efforts towards ensuring that its citizens have roofs over them. These efforts led to the establishment of several organizations, initiatives and programs.

As Nigeria marks another year of independence, its sacrosanct to take a cursory look at some of these initiatives and their impacts in the Nigeria housing sector.

Federal Housing Authority (FHA)

The Federal Housing Authority (FHA), a wholly owned agency of the Federal Government of Nigeria, was established via Decree 40 of 1973 now cited as Act CAP F-14 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004. The Authority is supervised by the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing. The Authority which became partially commercialized in accordance with Decree No 25 of 1988 is charged with: The preparation and submission from time to time, to the Government of proposals for National Housing Programmes; The making of recommendations to the Government on such aspects of urban and regional planning, transportation, communication, electric power, sewage and water supply development as may be relevant to the successful execution of housing programmes approved by the Government; and the execution of such housing programmes as may be approved by the Government.

Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN)

FMBN was established in 1956, known then as the Nigerian Building Society (NBS), a joint venture of the Commonwealth Development Corporation and the Federal and Eastern Governments of Nigeria. Following the introduction of the Indigenization Policy, the Federal Government, by Indigenization Act [1973], acquired the NBS and consequently renamed it the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN).

In 1994, FMBN assumed the status of an apex mortgage institution in Nigeria with the promulgation of the FMBN Act 82 [1993] and the Mortgage Institutions Act 53 [1989]. It also commenced the management and administration of the contributory savings scheme known as the National Housing Fund (NHF) established by Act 3 of [1992]. The National Housing Fund (NHF) is a social savings scheme designed to mobilize long-term funds from Nigerian workers, banks, insurance companies and the Federal Government to advance concessionary loans to contributors.

In fulfilling its mandate, the Bank is to also float capital market instruments such as Mortgage-Backed Bonds and Mortgage-Backed Securities for sale to institutional investors, such as pension funds, insurance companies, securities companies and banks, to raise long term funds for its secondary mortgage lending activities. This is to ensure a sustainable supply of liquidity to finance first home mortgage loan originations.

Following the reform of the Nigerian housing sector, FMBN was restructured into a Federal Government-Sponsored Enterprise (FGSE) with more focus on its secondary mortgage and capital market functions. FMBN is shifting operational emphasis to expand its functions from solely social housing on-lending under the NHF, to other areas of business including commercial on-lending for housing, refinancing of commercial mortgages created by mortgage loan originators, mortgage purchasing and warehousing and mortgage-backed securitization.
The Bank’s current business model targets partnerships with local and international organisations with financial and technical capacity, interested in delivering affordable mass housing for the low income end of the market.

The Nigerian Building and Road Research Institute (NBRRI)

 NBRRI is one of the parastatal under the aegis of the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology (FMST). It was established on 1st April 1978 by the Federal Government under the National Science and Technology Development Agency Bill (Now Act) 1977 Research Institute (Establishment) Order 1977.

NBRRI was established to conduct integrated Research and Development activities into the varied aspects of the building and road construction industries. The mandate was later in 1993 expanded to include R&D into all aspects of Engineering Materials related to the construction industry.

Several significant achievements were recorded in the last few years. These achievements were in the areas of developing new innovations, upgrading some existing NBRRI innovations, evolving and embarking on new R&D projects, embarking on aggressive outreach/extension programmes, administration activities, etc.

The Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company (NMRC)

 NMRC is a private sector-driven mortgage refinancing company with the public purpose of promoting home ownership for Nigerians while deepening the primary and secondary mortgage markets. Its vision is to be the dominant housing partner in Nigeria, with a mission to break down barriers to home ownership by providing liquidity, affordability, accessibility and stability to the housing market in Nigeria. NMRC raises long term funds from the capital market, to enhance access to affordable housing finance in Nigeria. NMRC was incorporated on 24th June 2013 and obtained its final operating license from the Central Bank of Nigeria on 18th February 2015. In July 2015, NMRC successfully issued a 15-year N8 billion Series 1 Bond under its N140 billion medium term Note Programme, backed by an unconditional Federal Government of Nigeria guarantee. This is being deployed to the refinancing of the mortgage portfolio of member Primary Mortgage Banks (PMBs).

Family Homes Funds (FHF)

 Family Homes Funds is a partnership between the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority as founding shareholders. The Fund is the largest affordable housing-focused fund in Sub-Sahara Africa, leveraging its significant capital (in excess of N500 billion by 2023) to facilitate access to affordable housing for millions of Nigerians on low to medium income groups. Through strategic partnerships with various players in the sector and some of the world’s main Development Finance Institutions, the Fund has an ambitious commitment to facilitate and supply 500,000 homes and 1.5million jobs for the low income earners by 2023. So far, the fund has been able to deliver mass housing for low income earners in the six geopolitical zones and in states like Nasarawa, Borno, Kaduna, Ogun, Delta and many more. The Fund is currently spearheading the federal government Social Housing Program to reduce the impact of covid-19 in Nigeria through the provision of over 300,000 houses and jobs.

National Housing Fund (NHF)

 National Housing Fund (NHF) is a Federal Government introduced scheme, to which all public servants and employees in the organised private sector within the country are expected to contribute 2.5% of their monthly salary to Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, managers of the fund. Employees of various corporations who are active contributors to the scheme, can access the fund through Union Homes Savings and Loans Plc. Maximum of N5million at the rate of 6% interest repayable over a period of 30 years is obtainable under this scheme. The Fund provides housing loan of up to 90% of the cost of the house. With other numerous benefits, the NHF is helping a lot of Nigerian workers in both public and private sectors own a home of their own at very affordable rates.

 Federal Government Staff Housing Loans Board (FGSHLB)

The Federal Government Staff Housing Loans Board (FGSHLB) was created to manage a revolving housing loan funds for the purpose of granting soft loans to federal public servants to enable them to build residential houses, purchase parcels of land for construction of residential houses or already built residential houses and for renovating or extending already existing residential houses.

Federal Government Integrated Staff Housing (FISH)

Federal Government Integrated Staff Housing (FISH) Programme is a strategic initiative to improve the welfare of civil servants through the provision of quality and affordable homes. It was initiated by the office of the head of the service of the federation in 2015 in line with the Federal Government housing policy. The program was designed to address the acute accommodation challenges confronting federal civil servants.

Real Estate Developer’s Association of Nigeria (REDAN)

REDAN is a self-regulated housing initiative and the principal agency of the organized private sector recognized by government and approved by the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), to facilitate the delivery of affordable mass housing for Nigerians. REDAN is the first point of call for the Federal, State and Local Governments, NGOs, and private establishments, as well as international partners and investors who wish to draw up a housing programme or participate in housing development in Nigeria.