An address for the masses
A decent home for every hardworking Filipino.
This is a mantra espoused by almost every leader who headed the country and an advocacy pushed by developers who look beyond the business of building homes.
Indeed, the principle of building quality homes for the masses has always been a major priority of those seeking to see change in the housing landscape. Admittedly however, such a goal is ambitious by all means, and will require a staunch commitment from the private sector and the political will from the government’s side.
“Over the years, both the government and the private sector have rolled out different projects to address the housing needs of low income Filipinos. However, at a projected 12 million housing backlog by 2030, it will take a massive amount of effort on the part of both private businesses and government to meet this deficit,” said Januario Jesus Gregorio B. Atencio III, president of mass housing developer 8990 Holdings Inc..
8990 Holdings Inc. is one of the few developers in the country which has become equally aggressive in addressing the universal challenge that is socialized housing. Over the past decade, 8990 has already delivered more than 50,000 housing units, making it the largest homebuilder in the affordable housing space in the Philippines today.
But there is a long road ahead. While 8990’s efforts are much to be heralded, the reality on the ground paints a grim picture: the housing backlog has ballooned to 5.56 million units and the number of homeless families has grown at a rate of 3.4 percent annually, based on an estimate of the National Economic and Development Authority.
So what can a developer do? Can the perennial problem of mass housing still be solved? This is precisely what 8990 has set to achieve: provide decent but affordable homes for every Filipino family.
“We keep our (mass housing) developments within the affordable price range of P450,000 to P1.7 million, which we believe is within reach of low and middle income buyers. This is made more affordable by facilitating the financing of these homes through the Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-Ibig Fund),” Atencio related.
“To purchase mass housing units, buyers are required to earn a combined monthly income of at least P30,000,” Atencio explained.
8990 Holdings has been considered to be highly successful in this segment as it adopted a business model anchored on the basic concepts of fast delivery, cheap finance, and good paying behavior. The company’s history as an affordable housing developer gave it the experience and technical know-how to help ensure that buyers are able to meet all the requirements of Pag-Ibig.
It has likewise developed a building technology using pre-cast monolithic panel walls that gives it the capability to build solid houses in as fast as eight days. But more importantly, the company managed to device a collection platform that uses behavior modification and education that reward good paying behavior to ensure that monthly amortizations are paid on time and regularly.
“It is part of the 8990 DNA to provide affordable housing to low and middle income earners without compromising on quality. The company adopts a pre-cast technology that makes building homes more cost efficient. This streamlines the housing production process. The savings we get from construction allows us to keep our developments affordable,” Atencio claimed.
“We have already moved into vertical developments in Metro Manila. In 2015, we began the construction of our largest vertical development in the city, Urban DECA Homes Manila which is set to provide 13,212 units by 2019. We are the first developer in Metro Manila to provide affordable housing at this scale. We have 53,809 units in the pipeline and plan to further expand our mid-rise portfolio to Ortigas, Las Pinas, Commonwealth, Balara and Batasan,” Atencio concluded.
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