The Challenge: The total housing shortage in Kenya, a nation of 43 million, is estimated at 150,000–200,000 homes in urban areas and more than 300,000 in rural areas. The government and private developers provide about 30,000 homes a year, well short of demand. “Affordable home ownership is still a pipe dream for most Kenyans,” Kenyan mortgage lending accounts for about 6 percent of bank loans, compared with about 25 percent in South Africa. There is an underdeveloped medium-to-low income housing market. The high cost of building materials, houses and land has turned away many potential investors. Interest rates are too high and there is lack of developed infrastructure and social amenities to support housing developments.
The solution: There is need for new building technologies for efficient mass production of housing units which reduce cost of construction and financing. Local banks should also reduce the interest they charge on mortgages to single digits. There is also a need for development of county administrative structures, which creates opportunities for financing developments within the counties, with new land laws enacted to streamline the process that supports turn-around in mortgage finance. That is why we believe in Homgenius franchising of interlocking concrete block machines as an alternative to the natural building stone which is expensive and takes long to build with.
Our core product is the Concrete Interlocking building bricks. However, our R&D team is continuously researching and developing other value added products that will be unveiled in the near future. This is in line with our vision of continuously improving our products to meet the high demand in the market. We have also partnered with other strategic players in the industry to provide affordable home ownership solutions.
In order to increase our capacity and efficiency, we have also partnered with engineering companies like Gearbox for the technical expertise and support on how to improve our machines, which are innovated, patented and designed in Kenya specifically for the Kenyan market.