Saudi 'needs 260,000 housing units a year'
Riyadh, April 1, 2012
Saudi Arabia’s developers will have to build about 260,000 residential units every year through 2017 to tackle the evergrowing housing problem across the Kingdom, said a report.
There is an urgent need for new units across the Kingdom to provide middle and lower income Saudi nationals with single-family homes, the Arab News reported.
A total of 1.3 million homes will be needed over five years to cater to the demands of a population that has doubled in size since 1988 and is growing over two percent annually.
The Kingdom continues to wrestle with a shortage of supply and mounting demand, which has placed home ownership affordability out of reach for many young Saudis.
The government is working on several fronts to tackle the problem by dedicating more than SR300 billion ($80 billion) to programs assisting lower income citizens obtain funding for home buys.
There are also signs the government is striving to expedite the passage of a long-delayed mortgage law, the report stated. Yet the short-term housing scenario is complex and puts young Saudi nationals at a disadvantage, it added.
Despite price constraints, the Saudi home ownership ratio is high at 60 per cent according to the 2004 general census, and 2007 demographic data showed the rate remained consistent.
The government’s goal is to raise home ownership among citizens to 80 per cent by 2024 by boosting supply of affordable housing and expanding financing options for citizens, the report added.
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