Kudakwashe Ruwende Herald Reporter
HARARE City Council and CABS have reduced deposits for their Budiriro houses to $2 200 for two-bedroomed houses and $2 700 for those with four bedrooms.Previously, the deposit for the two-bedroomed houses which cost $22 200 each was pegged at $5 874 and that for four-bedroomed houses which cost $27 000 was at $7 258 each.

The reduction is part of measures to increase uptake of the houses following poor response by prospective home owners after only 500 houses were bought since the completion of the 3 102 houses last year.

“The two parties held a meeting last month to devise mechanisms to attract takers for the houses, the city council announced on its website. CABS advised the meeting that it had revised downwards to 10 percent from 25 percent cash deposits required for the mortgage applicants.

The Budiriro housing project is targeted at low-income, first-time home owners and so far, about 500 houses have been allocated to successful beneficiaries.

In a bid to provide accommodation, Harare City has relaxed the six months mandatory waiting period for new entrants on the housing waiting list before they can qualify for allocation, a scheme which is still accessible to first time home owners.

CABS has also increased the tenure of mortgage loans to 20 years from 10 years to stimulate the provision of accommodation.

The country has a housing backlog of over 1,2 million units and according to the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (Zim-Asset), Government plans to construct 125 000 housing units by 2018.

This will be attained through the provision of housing stands, strengthening of public private sector partnerships and recapitalisation of the National Housing and National Guarantee Fund, among others.