Rise in housing price to continue; bleak picture for the youth

17 Jan 2016 18:20pm
WINDHOEK, 17 JAN (NAMPA) - The price of housing in Windhoek has increased by 27 per cent and the trend is expected to continue this year.
First National Bank (FNB)’s Manager for Research, Daniel Kavishe told Nampa on Thursday the increase during the third quarter of the 2015/2016 financial year is due to new housing developments at the coastal and central towns.
The third quarter starts in October and ends in December.
He noted that the housing price in Okahandja area grew 13 per cent.
The researcher found that the housing prices in Academia, one of Windhoek’s colonial neighbourhoods with big yards and houses, has increased by a shocking 78 per cent, pushing the median price to N.dollars 1.9 million, which means a mortgage of about N.dollars 20 000 per month.
The housing price in the coastal towns (Swakopmund, Walvis Bay and Henties Bay) increased by 12 per cent, pushing the median price to N.dollars 2.5 million.
The researcher said the trend is likely to continue into 2016, unless serious measures are taken to address the current housing prices in the country.
“We might find the continuous increase in housing price in 2016, unless Government intervenes by regulating prices in the country,” he said.
Kavishe stressed that the main concern will be jolting the supply in order to cater for new house owners in the market.
He said the gradual rise in interest rates seems to have had a muted impact on the demand for property, adding that consumers will react by reducing their exposure to other forms of debt such as instalment credit and advances before changing their demand for housing.
Kavishe said there was quick rise in mortgage debt with 16 per cent during the third quarter and the absorption of new property in the market has increased drastically.
The expert advised individuals to buy their own properties than renting, as this is a way of helping them pay their mortgages.
Namibia has been experiencing an unprecedented increase in housing prices, with the nation politicking for their right to a home and the capital city’s municipality saying there is not enough serviced land. This has left many young Namibians unable to afford their own property and renting from the affluent.
Following threats of ‘land grabbing’ in 2015, Government entered into an agreement with the Affirmative Repositioning (AR) movement to service 200 000 plots in the country under the Massive Urban Land Servicing (MULS) project.
This agreement come after the AR movement led by land activities Job Amupanda, Dimbulukeni Nauyoma and George Kambala threatened the government to mobilise the landless to forcefully occupy land if the government does not allocate them plots by 31 July 2015.
The government conceded and a pilot project to clear land for houses started in August last year in Windhoek, Oshakati and Walvis Bay.