‘No more squatting, renting’ – a dream come true for 11 new homeowners 

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By Shikema Dey

Shikema@newsroom.gy

For 30-year-old Renita Hennis, having her own home was a dream she always hoped would turn into reality. It means no hefty rent bills and the start of her journey to being independent.

“Rent takes a toll on your pocket and with the cost of living right now, not having to pay rent is a blessing to anyone,” she told the News Room on Saturday.

30-year-old Renita Hennis is now a homeowner (Photo: News Room/February 12/2022)

Being a homeowner means something different for 45-year-old Paulette Jones – finally being able to provide a proper roof for her seven children and no longer squatting.

“Is 26 years I squatting on a shaky structure with my children,” Jones shared.

The two women are among the list of 11 families who were presented with the keys of their brand new homes in the Cummings Lodge Housing Development at Plot 1767, Greater Georgetown.

It falls under a project by the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) government which is aimed at providing affordable housing for every Guyanese citizen; some 190 housing units were already constructed and only a handful are in the final stages of completion.

Padmini Urgaj poses with her grandson and husband along with Housing officials at the door of their brand new home

And according to the Minister of Housing and Water Collin Croal, by the end of March, over 100 housing units will be handed over to other Guyanese citizens.

The Housing Minister was keen to recognise the efforts of the lending institutions who helped to make citizens homeowners with ease.

“A lot of persons, when they go to the banks to be pre-qualified, sometimes they do not have all the documents or the right ones – basic information is sometimes lacking but the banks have been very supportive in working with our potential beneficiaries in helping them through the path to bring them to this stage,” the Housing Minister said.

According to the Minister of Housing and Water Collin Croal, by the end of March, over 100 housing units will be handed over to other Guyanese citizens

His statement was also supported by Renita Hennis who shared that the process of applying for her loan from the bank “was seamless and so quick.”

“People do not have to be scared to go to the bank, once you have your documents, they will help you like they helped me,” she shared.

Meanwhile, Minister Croal was also happy to report that for all of the housing units in Plot 1767, persons have already been prequalified “and that means a lot.”

At the beginning of the housing project, the ministry through the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) had to relocate a handful of squatters who occupied the land.

Inside one of the houses

And now, the area is set for major development, with new road infrastructure and other amenities coming soon, the Housing Minister added.

He announced too that another area in Cummings Lodge is also being cleared for the construction of over 100 elevated two-bedroom housing units later in the year.

“We are able to add more houses to this area so this will be a very populated community and I encourage you to take care of it,” he urged.

Minister within the Housing Ministry, Susan Rodrigues who was also at the ceremony, urged the new homeowners to celebrate what can be deemed a major life accomplishment.

“I know it brings much relief to the people who have been waiting, to be able to have a roof over your head…I know you have made great sacrifices, they saved and came to the ministry and today, it has all paid off,” she said.

Each of the housing units costs $7.5 million.

Other units similar to those at Cummings Lodge are being constructed at Prospect, Providence, Little Diamond, and Great Diamond in Region Four; Onderneeming and Wales in Region Three; Ordnance/Fortlands, Hampshire and Williamsburg in Region Six, and Amelia’s Ward in Region 10.

1 Comment
  1. Matthew says

    7.5 million???……Government did good there and this should be a real boost to persons.

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