Real estate companies don’t want to reduce their prices. It’s an ugly fact of life in Papua New Guinea.
If you ask real estate companies if there should be regulations, they will tell you something to the effect that it is a ‘self-regulating’ industry and that government should not interfere with that ‘self regulation.’
As long as there is demand, real estate companies have no problem keeping the prices high. The prices are out of reach for ordinary Papua New Guineans and still expensive for others who may be sharing rental costs with their partners or other family members.
In housing, you need economies of scale. That is where the National Housing Corporation (NHC) comes in. The government has the ability to acquire land and build houses and units that can be leased to Papua New Guineans starting out their careers in the public and private sector.
Housing rental rates have to be brought down. It is a basic necessity like food and water.
Crooks are allowed to profit from the housing sector through cheap purchases of badly managed government properties. The real estate market has been allowed to suck every toea possible from families as those living in run down government housing are forcefully evicted by the government agency established to provide affordable housing.
This system is not people friendly. This system does not serve the people. It serves corporate interests that puts our people at a disadvantage. It has done so for over 30 years.
It has to stop.
If you are going to evict families from rundown government housing, where do you put them? No strategy, you have. (Master Yoda voice)
The housing minister has to bring down rental prices. At present, who regulates the housing market? Who regulates the companies and pricing? It’s a glaring question that nobody wants to answer.
The banks and their part in the equation has to be examined. At one stage, interest rates were reduced and people were encouraged to buy houses. Many of those houses got repossessed later due to various reasons.
One simple message here: