The Haiti Home Ownership and Mortgage Expansion (HOME) Program, funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), addresses gaps in both the demand and supply sides of the housing value chain in Haiti to create affordable housing. Through developing an incentive structure, including varied deployment of pay-for performance (P4P) principles, the program mobilizes the Haitian financial sector and property developers to lead in expanding and improving the market for housing finance products and infrastructure.
The program works with implementing partners, Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) and the Affordable Housing Institute (AHI), seeking to unlock liquidity in the Haitian banking sector to mitigate risk for participating financial institutions (PFIs) and developers, and enable low, moderate and middle-income Haitian households to gain access to affordable housing. The HOME Program challenges and assists PFIs, developers, and low, moderate and middle-income households to identify, articulate and implement these solutions themselves—acting as a facilitator in the process—but does not create artificial interference in the housing market.
To ensure that housing developments meet high environmental standards, HOME collaborated with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to enable partner developers to become EDGE certified. Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies (EDGE) is a green building certification system for new residential and commercial buildings, especially adapted to emerging markets. Under this partnership, HOME offers technical assistance on EDGE standards and provides environmental sustainability incentives to developers to cover the incremental costs of achieving the green building benchmark.
This program is timely, given that the 2010 earthquake destroyed 180,000 homes adding to the existing housing shortage, creating a backlog of nearly 300,000 units. USAID in close collaboration with the Government of Haiti (GOH) identified a number of fundamental constraints in Haiti’s housing delivery system. Against a backdrop of extreme poverty, the Haiti HOME Program helps address some of these constraints through the innovative uses of capital that have the additional benefit of addressing gaps, disruptions, weaknesses, or inefficiencies in Haiti’s delivery of either affordable homes or affordable housing financing.
Read more: An Introduction to Pay-for-Results in Development
Quarterly Update (March 2020)
In Q2 FY 2020 (January 1 to March 31, 2020), challenges increased for the investment environment in Haiti. As the Haitian private sector was attempting to navigate eight weeks of unrest last quarter, a highly unstable political and economic environment, as well as currency devaluation, the COVID-19 pandemic further complicated matters. As soon as the announcement of the first case was made in Haiti by President Jovenel Moise on March 19, 2020, HOME observed its partners become quickly impacted. For example, one developer in the process of completing a construction milestone was repeatedly interrupted due to the closure of all major hardware supply stores in the country. This same developer who has completed 10 units, was getting ready to launch a marketing campaign in early April, which was hindered. Another developer the process of setting up mortgage transactions was set back, as financial institutions become nonresponsive in light of the ongoing pandemic. HOME is working closely with its partners in order assess how COVID-19 is affecting their ability to continue producing planned results, with non-essential commercial activities coming to a standstill.
As of the end of Q2 FY20, HOME’s commitments under the HOME Facility catalytic grant fund are currently committed at 91%. Out of 21 activities funded, seven are on the demand side and fourteen are on the supply side of the housing value chain. To date, HOME has residential units under contract spread across six affordable housing development projects. While no new activities were launched in this quarter, one housing site managed to complete key milestones and one developer was close to making an award claim in late March. As of March 2020, private capital committed by developers and financial institutions partners reached USD 37.4 million. Thus far, HOME has leveraged USD 19.8 million of these private funds in activities such as owner-led housing microfinance products, developer-led housing infrastructure investments, and mortgage products in return for USD 2.9 million in incentives.
In this quarter, as a way to bring further innovation in the sales of housing units, HOME facilitated the development of a new home buying program between KOTELAM and Chabuma S.A. The purpose of this new program is to streamline the sales process and generate greater levels of synergy between the supply and demand sides of the market. This new program consists of credit unions pre-purchasing housing units for their members, prior to the construction of the units by a developer. Such cooperative home buying schemes are highly innovative and reduce barriers to entry for low to middle-income households to purchase residential units. A total of five units are scheduled to be purchased by KOTELAM within Chabuma’s Santo 3 Desjardins project. This model is expected to be replicated across other housing projects.
Breaking New Grounds:
EDGE Certified Affordable Housing in Haiti
Patrick Brun is the owner of Chabuma, a local developer who recently finished building the country’s first affordable housing developments in Port au Prince. Chabuma’s Villa Flora and Village La Fontaine developments stand as a model for what is possible in Haiti when affordable housing meets sustainability. Each home offers a safe, clean and green space for families to escape the poverty trap and invest in their future. In a country where land titles are rare and houses are often purchased on the informal market, Chabuma’s developments offer a unique opportunity for low and middle-income households to gain security of tenure.
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Credit Union Magazine Article
CUs Provide Housing Hope for Haitians: WOCCU works to address housing shortage
A major earthquake in Haiti in 2010 killed more than 230,000 people, displaced nearly 1.5 million more, and destroyed more than 180,000 homes, exacerbating an already existing housing shortage.
Despite an influx of foreign aid, years after the earthquake inadequate housing options remain a challenge for Haitians. In 2015, with funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the World Council of Credit Unions started the Haiti Home Ownership and Mortgage Expansion (HOME) Program.
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Village Dominique, based in Santo 3, includes both a commercial and residential community with affordable, modern housing and green building certification.LEARN MORE
The development provides 75 units in Village Noailles, in the town of Croix-des-Learn More
Chabuma’s first developments are being built on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince and include 37 units in Corlette and six in Santo.Learn More
SOCOLAVIM exceeded initial targets set by the HOME program by more than 20%Learn More
Haiti HOME will enable Joselande to build a home instead of continuing to pay rentLearn More
Haiti HOME partners with Habitat for Humanity and Affordable Housing Institute in providing affordable housingLearn More
Credit Unions in Haiti (2018)
- 85 total credit unions
- 826,072 members
- USD 109,320,615 in assets