EDITORIAL

PUSH TO AFFORDABLE HOUSING NECESSARY TO REVIVE ECONOMY

Affordable housing is something which should address the housing needs of the lower or middle income households. Affordable housing becomes a key issue especially in developing nations where a majority of the population isn’t able to buy houses at the market price. It refers to housing units that are affordable by that section of society whose income is below the median household income. Though different countries have different definitions for affordable housing, but in meaning it largely remains the same. There is a lot of demand for housing in our growing economy. At the moment, approximately 32 per cent of the Indian population stays in urban areas. This figure is said to go up to 45 per cent by the year 2030, with 13 per cent of the young and growing population shifting to urban areas. Therefore, the demand for housing is expected to remain quite high in next 15 years. When we consider 13 per cent of Indian population, we are talking big numbers. That is more people than 226 countries individually and only 7 countries in the world have more population than 13 per cent of Indian population. The supply of quality affordable housing has been very low or limited in India. Most of the private housing companies have focused on high-end luxury properties and have got good results until recently. The demand of luxury or high-end housing was always there. Along with the demand of end-use, HNIs and NRIs who bought these properties in multiple numbers used them to park their funds. There has never been a synchronized approach in Indian real estate market especially after the economy opened up. Following a major slowdown in the real estate sector, the Government of India has taken various measures to meet the increased demand for affordable housing along with some developers and stressing on public-private partnerships (PPP) for development of these units. In this issue we take a look at the crucial agenda of housing for all.