Articles

2015 Housing Microfinance Survey

This report assesses the current state, trends and challenges of housing microfinance based on a 2014 survey of 48 financial institutions located across four regions: Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia and the Pacific, Africa and the Middle East, and Eastern Europe and Central Asia. The financial institutions that participated in the survey represent commercial banks, nonbanking financial companies, microfinance institutions, nongovernmental organizations, savings and loan companies, and cooperatives.

Lessons from 11 Partnerships of Habitat for Humanity

This compendium of the four articles linked below is based on case studies from 11 microfinance institution partners of Habitat for Humanity and their experiences with housing microfinance. This document sums up the lessons that the Center has learned through these partnerships, in four categories: 1. Opportunities and Constraints for Housing Microfinance; 2. Housing Support Services: Do They Add Value to Housing Microfinance? 3. Housing Microfinance Product Development: Key Factors for Success; and 4. Taking Housing Microfinance Products to Scale: Institutional Commitment and Capacity. 

 

Habitat’s Housing Microfinance Work with HKL in Cambodia 

This short article from Microfinance Focus discusses the results of a housing microfinance pilot that Cambodian microfinance institution Hattha Kaksekar Limited just completed. HKL has recently moved into the housing space with technical assistance from Habitat for Humanity.

How Can Microfinance for Housing, Land, and Infrastructure Catalyze Slum Improvements and New Settlements? [pdf]

This paper, co-written by the Center’s Patrick Kelley, discusses slums in large cities in the developing world and the critical role that housing microfinance is playing in improving housing conditions for many of the slum’s marginalized households.

Removing Road Blocks to Housing Finance: New Findings from Latin America

Habitat for Humanity’s Center for Innovation in Shelter and Finance undertook a study to determine the status of housing microfinance in Latin America.  The purpose of the study was to identify key factors facilitating or restricting its growth. A summary of the findings were published on the Center for Financial Inclusion’s website. 

Microfinance for Housing in Africa’s Cities

Housing microfinance (HMF), although young and small in scope as compared to traditional microfinance services, is already demonstrating that its ability to adjust to unique financial capabilities and client cash flows make it a good fit for many Africans’ housing financing needs.  Whether it is used for incremental house construction, renovation, land purchase, or site improvement, HMF services are on the rise.

The Role of Property and Shelter in Financial Inclusion

Patrick Kelley, Habitat for Humanity International’s Director of International Housing Finance, talks about how many of the actors working to help households acquire and expand their property and shelter assets may not be clothed in the typical financial inclusion fashion. But, in the spirit of expanding the financial inclusion conversation, they have much to contribute.

Getting to Scale in Housing Microfinance

Read this joint study conducted by Accion and Habitat for Humanity International that covered ten of Accion’s partners in Latin America, representing more than 90 percent of the Accion Network’s housing portfolio. The objective of this research was to learn about the key success factors as well as challenges and barriers for reaching scale in housing.

Microfinance to Mitigate Substandard Housing

The Center’s Patrick McAllister writes for the Center for Financial Inclusion.  The article presents evidence that supports the claims that housing microfinance is good business for financial institutions and is an effective method for empowering the poor to incrementally improve their housing conditions.

Capitalizing Housing for the Poor: Findings from Five Focus Countries [pdf]

This report seeks to inform the impact investment community, as well as the microfinance sector at large, about the opportunities and barriers for investment in the growth of housing microfinance.  This paper is the result of both desk-based research and in-country investigations facilitated by Habitat for Humanity International on the housing finance “situation gap.”  The study presents country-level trends in housing microfinance and the factors that may enable increased scale, impact and social investment.

Asia’s Poor Should be Helped to Save for a Better Home

Habitat’s Asia/Pacific Housing Finance director, Patrick McAllister, authored this op-ed for the South China Morning Post.  According to McAllister, smart regulations, new technology and incentives are some of the ways to help low-income families save for a better home.