Hire-Purchase for Affordable Housing: A much-needed post-COVID ‘Booster’
Affordable housing initiative, aimed at providing budget housing units for the lower income groups, has been one of the flagship programs of the Govt of India. The initiative has not only helped the poor access quality housing thereby raising their standard of living but has also proven to be an important growth driver for the real estate sector over the last few years. However, with COVID battering the economy into recession, there is a risk of this effort being derailed since the primary target segment of this initiative – the urban poor, is likely to have been most affected by this economic turmoil. This then also spells bad news for the real estate sector which after battling a general economic slowdown and showdown banking crisis was betting big on affordable housing for a turnaround. In our paper, ‘Hire-Purchase for Affordable Housing: A much-needed post-COVID Booster’, we look at how this COVID induced recession can impact the affordable housing initiative and explore a possible solution, viz. Hire-Purchase, that can help maintain momentum on this effort. The paper studies how hire-purchase has been deployed in some of the more advanced economies (US and UK) and how based on those learnings and our unique context we can adapt this model to create a long-term sustainable solution for our chronic urban housing problem.