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Burgin: Over 3000 applicants for houses

Burgin: Over 3000 applicants for houses

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Cecelia Mckie is singing praises to God as well as representatives of the Government for enabling her to move into a recently constructed No Income Home.{{more}}

A tour, hosted yesterday by the Ministry of Housing and the Housing Land Development Co-orporation (HLDC), led media representatives to one of the first constructed No income houses at Clare Valley, on the Leeward side of the island.

Mckie now enjoys the comfort of a two-bedroom home, constructed about two years ago, a vast difference to her previous home, which she referred to as a “fowl pen”. She thanked Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves and Manager of the HLDC Morris Slater for her home.

There are two completed No Income houses in Clare Valley, including the residence of Mckie, with 25 completed Low Income houses. Ten more houses are currently under construction and are expected to be completed by December 2011.

“All in all, I must say that the Ministry of Housing is doing an incredible job,” said Minister of Housing Clayton Burgin, commenting on the progress of the National Housing Programme, as he toured with his Ministry yesterday.

Burgin also congratulated employees of the HLDC for a job well done.

According to Burgin, there are currently between 3,000 and 4,000 applicants for the National Housing Programme. He expressed disappointment that not every person will get a house.

Giving a tour of a completed Low Income house at Clare Valley, Slater described the house as efficient. The two-bedroom house, which includes a kitchen, an open living room and dining area and a full bathroom is valued at $130,000, with land included.

Some homes, Slater stated, are also built to facilitate the construction of a lower level in the future. He added that not all houses will have this feature, but it will depend at times on the topography of the site.

Housing Development Officer Saskia Scotland explained that persons wishing to apply for a Low Income home must do so at the HLDC. The HLDC, she added, will then refer the applicant to a financial institution to secure a loan. Once a loan is approved, the building process will begin.

Scotland added that beginning next year, the HLDC will be exploring new building techniques for affordable housing. She also stated that they will hold sessions with persons within the construction industry on these alternative techniques.

Other sites visited on Monday included Chauncey, which has one completed No Income house, and had several houses repaired following the passage of Hurricane Tomas. Houses at Questelles, Chateaubelair, Coulls Hill and Rose Hall also underwent repairs following the passage of Tomas. Sixteen Low Income houses were completed at Richmond, while ten No Income houses were completed in Chateaubelair and Coulls Hill.(OS)

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