Taking RTO to greater heights
… as company initiates Rent-to-Retirement programme
By Tracy Tafirenyika
RTO Housing Namibia (RTO) has introduced a new transformational programme called Rent-To-Retirement. The programme will provide alternative housing financing for people above the age of 50 and going into their retirement age.
Speaking at the launch event; RTO Managing Director, Inocencio Verde stated that the main objective for the Rent-to-Retirement programme, is to address the social welfare of the Namibian people.
“Under the Ongos Valley Development project, our vision is to provide solutions that elevate human dignity through the power of ownership. This is what we strive for and we can only achieve this if we come up with strategic solutions such as the Rent-to-Retirement to truly address the social welfare of our people.
Our mission for RTO is to provide a pathway to homeownership for people above the age of 50 who are interested in acquiring property within their local authority. We have members in uniform such as the police, such as NDF, teachers as well as nurses who are deployed all over the country. Most of these members have not owned a house but as they venture into retirement the reality to own a home kicks in. At the same time banks are not able to assist or rather they are reluctant to assist these types of clients, so this becomes a challenge.
RTO Housing Namibia is there to solve this challenge by providing them with an alternative financing model where a portion of their pension can be used to acquire a home.”
Speaking at the same event, Chief Executive Officer of the Development Bank of Namibia, Martin Inkumbi expressed that RTO Housing Namibia is bringing another innovative product in the housing market which will help many retired workers to kick-start their dream to own a house.
According to Inkumbi, housing is a key element and the role remains to develop strategies that will improve the social welfare of the people and the economic growth of the country at large.
“In the words of our President Dr Hage Geingob in March 2021 during the launch of the Harambee Prosperity Plan 2 under the pillar of social progression, it states that, the social progression pillar takes a people-centred approach to development that aims to ensure improved quality of life for all Namibians especially the most vulnerable members of our society. The desired outcomes are to provide the basic amenities for a unified life, social mobility and human development. It is therefore my clarion call to those financial institutions to welcome the concept of Rent-to- Retirement and Rent-to-Own and continue to invest in this model in order to improve the social welfare of our people.
“I am of the view that Rent-to-Retirement is such a product that seeks to address the social welfare of the vulnerable members of our community and to provide housing for a dignified living as our people move closer to the retirement age.
We earlier heard from the statistics that more than 30 percent of government employees are not able to qualify for the provisional home loans for various reasons. This is despite the fact that government introduced an average of 66 percent housing subsidy. Unfortunately, only 18 percent of civil servants make use of this subsidy to buy homes, and these statistics really worry me indeed,” he stated.
According to the Namibian National Housing policy white paper which was revealed in 2009, the government has set out some housing strategies which include but not limited to the following:
Housing as an agent of economic growth.
As a way of promotion of ‘chemical’ investment in local and regional infrastructure to speed up the process of bank delivery.
The mobilisation of domestic savings and affordable credit to provide and finance housing.
The provision of subsidies and grants by government and development partners to support social housing.
The promotion of the use and appropriate and alternative building materials and techniques in order to provide affordable housing.
The introduction of a four -based housing means where the product of rental accommodation including rent to buy options which have already been highlighted.