The Chamber of Real Estate and Builders’ Association Inc. (CREBA)-Cebu Chapter wants to assist local government units (LGUs) in Cebu in crafting their respective shelter plans to help address the country’s ballooning housing backlog which now stands at more than 6.5 million units.
Serafin Blanco, chairman of CREBA-Cebu, in an interview during the group’s monthly business meeting, said the group commits to working with the government in addressing the housing shortage in the country.
Specifically, the group wants to conduct a dialogue with the LGUs and with the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) to discuss housing concerns and solutions, among others.
CREBA-Cebu Chapter, he said, has been helping the government address the housing backlog by encouraging its members to fast-track housing development and cater to the various housing categories.
Its member-brokers have since been providing raw lands for real estate firms to develop whose projects in return are handed over to the member-brokers, who will then seek buyers.
He said the current housing gap now can be remedied by helping LGUs come up with their own shelter plans as encouraged by the DHSUD.
CREBA-Cebu Chapter president Roberto Pacaña said they want to hold discussions with LGUs so they can share their inputs and expertise in crafting their housing development plans especially since Cebu, for instance, is already experiencing scarcity of land.
“CREBA would like to initiate a meeting with concerned LGUs and DHSUD to iron out the housing supply concerns in Cebu particularly in the socialized and economic housing categories,” he said.
Currently, DHSUD pegs the housing backlog at more than 6.5 million units.
“We crafted plans based on our assessment of the sector. As we can see now, there are two main bottlenecks that we must address to conquer the housing backlog in the country – first is access to funding and second, affordability. That is the direction of our strategies,” DHSUD Secretary Jose Rizalino Acuzar said in a statement.
In a presentation, DHSUD Assistant Secretary Avelino Tolentino III stressed that the agency intends to focus on two banner programs: (1) the development of 10 priority areas and (2) urban renewal project sites in major cities and informal settler families sites along esteros and waterfronts in major urban areas nationwide, in partnership with local governments and the private sector.
“We are involving as many players who are capable to help us achieve our ultimate goal to produce and finance quality houses for Filipinos. This is where our partner-developers will come in. We seek the support of our legislative branch to attract the participation of the private sector in government housing programs,” the DHSUD chief said.