Lagos Government launches website on housing owners’ scheme
Abdul Semiu Babalola, Lagos
The Lagos state government has launched an official website on a home ownership scheme for residents of the state, particularly first time buyers.
Launching the website at Lagos House Alausa, Ikeja, Governor Babatunde Fashola said the scheme would make the dream of owning a home a reality for many residents of the commercial city.
He also inaugurated the Lagos Court of Arbitration to mediate in disputes that may arise from the implementation of the new scheme.
The website will serve as data base for all applicants to the Lagos Home Ownership Scheme, christened “Lagos HOMS”.
“The Lagos Home Ownership Scheme will be launched with the pool of housing stock presently available to the Lagos State Government. More housing units will be offered for sale under the Scheme as they are completed”, Governor Fashola said during the launch.
He added that the Government had designed a structure whereby it would collaborate with named partner banks for the provision of funds to support applicants in the acquisition of homes as well as in the management of the pre-qualification procedures.
The housing scheme will provide equity funding on the platform of mortgage financing for the purchase of homes. Applicants will become proud owners of their own homes after equity contribution of not more than 30% of the unit price with the balance payable over ten to twenty years.
According to the Governor, the scheme is primarily for first time buyers. Applicants must abide by certain rules of pre-qualifications which would be made available on the website.
Part of the requirements for qualification are a sworn-in affidavit attesting that the applicant does not own a property anywhere in Lagos state, proof of employment and residency with evidence of tax payment in the state.
He explained that, “any false deposition in the buyer’s affidavit will be a ground for re-possession and this will be without prejudice to other criminal sanctions that may be imposed by law”.
Governor Fashola said the launch of the Scheme’s website and Housing Arbitration Rules constitute “the first in a series of events that will lead to flagship formal launch of Lagos HOMS in a short while”
He said, “Between now and then, the website will be uploaded with all the necessary information to help prospective buyers under the Scheme make an informed choice. By the date of the formal launch of Lagos HOMS, applicants will have the choice of downloading all the forms from the website and visit the partner banks only to submit completed documents.”
On the Housing Arbitration Rules, the Governor explained that the rules have been passed by the Board of the Lagos Court of Arbitration, adding that it was put in place in order not to overburden the regular courts.