In line with Letshego’s purpose to improve lives, the pan-African inclusive finance Group is now launching its latest flagship product, Affordable Housing. The product is available to customers in Namibia and Botswana, with rollout plans to the Group’s remaining pan-African countries.
Citizens across Africa, and many global emerging markets, struggle to access housing for several reasons, including lack of affordability, stringent qualifying credit criteria, restrictions in the location of houses available for financing, as well as rapidly escalating house prices spurred by rising inflation as well as the lack of available land allocated to small to medium housing.
Letshego’s inclusive Affordable Housing solution aims to mitigate access challenges experienced by individuals in broader communities by offering a choice in products. These include an all-in-one solution with land and a customisable house, or capital to purchase material from trusted local suppliers to renovate existing homes or properties, wherever the structures may be located. Home improvement finance options include additional benefits such as competitive pricing for labour, construction advisory support and quality building materials accessed via a Letshego’s dedicated network of established and accredited engineering and construction experts.
Celebrating the launch of Letshego’s suite of Affordable Housing products, Letshego’s Group Chief Executive, Aupa Monyatsi commented, “In many of our regional markets, owning your own home is unfortunately still a luxury. Ironically, there are still many individuals and families across our communities who cannot access financial support to purchase or upgrade their homes – despite them being able to afford loan installment. The barriers to accessing housing finance include onerous qualifying credit criteria, inability to provide adequate credit records, challenges in providing formal collateral or evidence of regular income in the case of many small business owners. Letshego is committed to bridging the gap so that more individuals across our regional footprint can access support to buy or renovate their homes, thus providing dignity and long term stability for more families, and solid foundations for our future generations.”
Letshego Affordable Housing product in Namibia is supported by a facility provided by the IFC (Interational Finance Commission), a member of the World Bank Group, in line with the global institutions commitment to leverage its facilities for broader social and economic impact across emerging markets.
Lucy Kiai, Letshego Group’s Head of Programmatic Lending, the division focused on innovating commercial products to deliver a marked change in social, economic and environmental impact added, “Providing access to simple yet affordable housing is aligned with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals in building sustainable communities. Letshego is passionate in its support of social development initiatives, continuously seeking to improve our commercial products so we can achieve a measurable social impact that enables our emerging communities to improve their prospects in income generation, social stability and acquisition of appreciating assets that ultimately contribute to longer term economic development for our local communities.”
Letshego’s Affordable Housing proposition includes housing finance, construction, plot purchase and renovation. Letshego’s Affordable Housing and Home Renovation solutions are accessible digitally via the LetsGo Digital Mall – available online and via mobile – thus making it easier for rurally based customers to access the solution from wherever they may be located.
Fergus Ferguson, Letshego Botswana’s Country Chief Executive Officer added, “Transforming housing finance into a more diversely affordable and accessible solution is not as simple as offering a home loan with lowered interest rates. It’s about understanding the demographics and unique needs of our local communities, and then creating a solution that includes a multi-faceted structure that offers a choice in approach and structure to suit our customer’s unique affordability criteria. Solution enhancements include choices in asset finance – be it land purchase financing, home construction or home renovation. There is also the development of effective credit evaluation structures that increase access to capital for more consumers while still maintaining requirements in effective risk management so we may continue lending for many generations ahead.”
Letshego’s Affordable Housing extends traditional housing beyond city centers, thus supporting rural councils and communities to develop their own micro economies. To provide a more wholistic level of support for customers, Letshego has established partnerships with local and international industry-related organisations and suppliers to expand the value of its Affordable Housing offering. Benefits include support in construction, engineers and access to quality building materials. Letshego is committed to its vision in creating safe and sustainable living environments for more individuals and families, all while working closely with local and national governments to support national economic development targets.