The right to adequate housing is one of the most important human rights that enable one to have a decent life, produce, and benefit his country.
Historically, Egypt has suffered from a shortage of suitable housing units compared to the citizens’ low incomes. Hence, the Ministry of Housing decided to provide different housing products that suit all tastes and different incomes, whether social housing, middle-class housing, or luxury housing.
Offering 40,000 housing units, the new Sakan Misr housing project launched its initial phase in six cities to meet the needs of citizens of housing. The question is, can the government succeed in reducing the irrational prices of housing and meet the needs of citizens?
The sale of Sakan Misr’s conditions booklets started in the last week, reaching about 8,000 booklets on the first day.
The prices of real estate and apartments increased significantly during the last period by 50-150% in a number of areas, due to the economic reform measures, including the flotation of the pound and cutting fuel subsidies. These measures were aimed at decreasing the budget deficit and controlling inflation.
Daily News Egypt will review all details of the Sakan Misr housing project and explore the feasibility of the project to meet the needs of Egyptian citizens.
What do we know about Sakan Misr project?
The new project is part of the ministry’s special housing portfolio, which contains units with areas of 115 square metres, said Walid Abbas, deputy minister of housing for urban communities’ affairs.
He added that the project will be surrounded by a fence to ensure privacy, in addition to distinctive facilities in payment and competitive prices.
Abbas said that the project was aimed at resolving the escalating prices of housing units in Egypt, which witnessed a huge increase during the last period.
The official affirmed that his ministry offers housing units at suitable prices. For example, in New Cairo in the apartments, the Ministry of Housing sold a meter of land down by 60 to 70% compared to the private sector apartments.
The projects’ locations and prices
Abbas said that the project’s six cities include New Cairo, 6th of October City, New Damietta, New Minya, Badr City, and Obour City.
He added that New Cairo has about 18,000 units, one of which will be sold at about EGP 5,000 per square metre, totaling EGP 575,000.
In 6th of October City, the price of land reached about EGP 15,000 per square metre, totaling about EGP 483,999.
In New Damietta, the ministry will offer about 2,000 units, and the price of apartments reached EGP 4,400 per square metre, totaling EGP 506,000.
In Obour City, the housing ministry will offer about 3,000 units, and the price of each square metre reached EGP 4,000, totaling EGP 460,000.
In New Minya, the housing ministry offered about 1,000 units, and the price of each square metre costs EGP 3,700, totaling EGP 425,500.
In Badr City, the ministry also offered about a 1,000 units, priced at EGP 4,000 per square metre, so that the price of the unit will reach EGP 460,000.
Abbas said that the minister assured that there is no need to contend or to worry about running out of conditions booklets, as there are instructions to extend the reservation period until 5 October through eight branches.
The bank’s branches will be open from 9 am to 5 pm in New Cairo, Nasr City, 6th of October City, Haram, and Badr City.
Madbouly added that the reservation can be done between 10 September and 5 October 2017 during the working hours of all the branches of the HDB. The applicants will deliver the reservation form and pay the down payment, which reflects the seriousness of the buyer.
Abbas said that to reserve a unit in this project, the applicant must be at least a 21-year-old Egyptian who has not previously purchased an apartment or a piece of land from the ministry. Finally, the family cannot apply for more than one unit.
Potential home buyers are requested to have no previous apartments within the housing project.
How will the citizen pay for the apartment?
Potential home buyers are requested to make a 10% down payment of the total cost of the unit, and the remaining amount could be paid in one of several payment methods.
Then the applicant will pay after winning should pay another 10% of the total price of the unit.
It will be followed by the payment of quarterly installments of EGP 10,000 for a year and a half, and another 10% when the applicant receives the apartment.
Abbas explained that the rest of the price will be paid according to two payment methods. The first method is to pay the rest of the price over five years without interest. The second payment method is to pay the remaining amount of the price over 15 years on the mortgage system with an interest rate of 8.5%.
Abbas revealed that the second and third floors of the project were completed.
Abbas noted that the Housing Ministry’s initiatives come to provide housing for citizens, whether through social housing or the Dar Misr or Sakan Misr projects, in order to eliminate slums.
The Dar Misr applicants are not entitled to apply for Sakan Misr
Tarek El Sebaei, deputy head of the new Urban Communities Authority for Commercial and Real Estate Affairs, said that the Dar Misr applicants are not entitled to apply for Sakan Misr.
El Sebaei added that item No. 3 of the conditions of booking in the booklet of the first stage units in the Sakan Misr project has been amended to require that the applicant obtaining an apartment in a housing project not have a housing unit in the Dar Misr project.
He further added that the housing units offered for sale are for residential use only, and the purchaser or his general or private successor are not entitled to change the purpose of the unit.
In case of violation, the real estate regulations of the authority shall be applied in this regard, with the termination of the contract without notice, warning, or the issuance of a judicial judgment and taking the legal procedures.
Hani Younis, a spokesman for the Ministry of Housing, Utilities, and Urban Communities, said that it is not necessary that the applicants live or work in the same city.
He explained that any citizen has the right to obtain a unit in any province, as long as the conditions apply.
The ministry will offer a 7% discount on the price of the unit in case of paying within two months.
The minister assured that there is no need to contend or worry about running out of conditions booklets, as there are instructions to print new ones in case the existing ones run out from the Housing Development Project.
Building more units is our weapon to fight speculators
Abbas said that his ministry is well aware of the speculators who exploit the state support to provide apartments with a very low profit margin for citizens.
He said that the old method of payment enables the speculator to win the apartment, which threatens the project’s objective that is to meet the housing needs of citizens.
He added that the ministry had put a ban on the sale of housing units only after a long period, but this move did not work. He added that the only solution is that the ministry should increase the new units to meet the demands of all citizens.
The deputy minister of housing said that his ministry is currently preparing to launch a new stage of the Dar Misr project, but he stressed that the work started in the project, noting that the prices of the coming units of Dar Misr will be higher compared to previous phases.