Over 11,000 house lots distributed by PPP/C Govt – Min Croal
…as Condominium Bill receives blessings of House
…paves way for construction of high-rise buildings
Housing and Water Minister Collin Croal on Tuesday told a sitting of the National Assembly that the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Government has so far distributed over 11,000 house lots since taking office in August 2020.
During his presentation on the Condominium Bill, Croal was happy to report that the Ministry has already surpassed its house lot distribution targets for 2020 and 2021.
“And we will do the same for 2022. In fact, we have allocated over 11,000 house lots to date. Further, as we speak, more than 1100 houses are being built in eight housing areas across the country, 300 of which have already been handed over to the homeowners,” Croal stated.
According to him, the Government is cognisant of the demand for housing, which he noted remains high, and as such, assured that the Government is actively seeking to acquire new lands and develop current ones.
“The acquisition of new lands and the execution of critical infrastructure development works will clear the way for the allocation of more. And more lots will be allocated, being cognisant of the challenges that allottees encounter when financing the construction of their homes, we have sought to make access to credit easier,” the Housing Minister related.
As a result, the low-income mortgage loan ceiling has increased from $8 million to $15 million for the period August 2020 to February of this year. This, of course, has made homeownership more attainable as banks can now approve a higher number of mortgages annually, coupled with the reinstatement of the $30 million ceiling for mortgage relief.
The Condominium Bill, which was first tabled in April, seeks to regularise the purchase of duplexes and condominiums. It provides for the horizontal and vertical subdivision of buildings, for individual ownership and management of units.
Among other things, the Bill paves the way for commercial banks to accept titles for the properties, and insurance companies to issue policies to owners of condominiums. Clause 19 of the Bill states that units in a condominium constitute immovable property, while Clause 20 provides for the title of ownership of a condominium unit.
Clause 44 empowers unit owners to insure their respective units. The Bill also requires that proposed declarations and descriptions of units be approved by the Minister before a condominium is constructed, or before an existing building is converted into a condominium. It also empowers the Minister to approve, reject, or direct the amendment of a proposed declaration and description.
The crafting and tabling of such a Bill fulfil the promise of the PPP/C Government, which was made after it was discovered that the former coalition Administration had constructed duplexes (a home with two individually-owned units in one building) without amending the relevant legislation that guides the regulation of such properties.
The Bill was crafted by the Ministry of Housing and Water and the Attorney General’s Chambers. It forms part of the Government’s legislative agenda which is directed towards a revamp of many of the archaic and outmoded laws of the country, as well as to lay the foundation for the economic development anticipated to take place in the very near future.
At present and with the oil and gas sector bringing not only foreigners but also members of the Guyanese diaspora to these shores, there is a demand for condominiums that are of a world-class quality.