The National Housing Corporation (NHC) has shifted its focus to build smaller houses, costing Sh2 million, as the state-owned firm targets low-income earners.

According to the NHC Managing Director Peter Njuguna, the corporation will next year build 11,000 houses along Nairobi’s Thika Road and in Mombasa, Kisumu and Eldoret that will include one bedroom apartments –  a departure from the usual three to four-bedroom units in upmarket areas.

“We are targeting individuals in the lower and middle market segments who want to access decent housing at friendly prices,” Mr Njuguna said adding that the low-end market segment has been neglected by private developers.

The NHC has not been able to deliver housing to this market due to the high prices of homes that it has been putting up in estates such as Nairobi West, Lang’ata and Kileleshwa – with a three-bedroom house selling for up Sh13 million for a three-bedroom.

With the Sh2 million houses, a buyer will pay Sh25,304 in monthly re-payments for 15 years based on NHC interest rate of 13 per cent. This means workers with a gross monthly income of Sh60,000 can qualify for the home.

The corporation is currently searching for land within 20km of the Nairobi city centre to put up low cost houses to meet growing demand from low income workers.

“NHC wishes to purchase at least five acres of prime land for housing development in a good location situated not more than 20 kilometres from Nairobi’s Central Business District,” the firm said in a press notice.

NHC is also looking for joint ventures with land owners and concessionary loans from international lenders to increase smaller and more affordable housing units.

The firm will build 3,000 units along the newly completed Thika Superhighway; 1,200 units in Eldoret; 1,000 units in Kisumu; 1,800 units in Mombasa (Changamwe) and 4,000 units along Nairobi’s Mombasa Road.

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