Dominica to construct 700 new homes for vulnerable individuals, families in 2022/23 fiscal year

PM Skerrit added, "While housing traditionally has not been a primary responsibility of any Government, this Labour Party Government has recognized our social responsibility to our people. Natural events have also reminded us of how important it is to a family to have a safe and secure dwelling." 

Dominica: PM Skerrit announces major plans for education sector for 2022/23 fiscal year
Dominica: PM Skerrit announces major plans for education sector for 2022/23 fiscal year

Roseau, Dominica: For the 2022/23 fiscal year, Prime Minister Dr Roosevelt Skerrit announced that the Government would construct 700 new homes for vulnerable individuals and families across the country. During his budget presentation, he focused on the new Future Housing Programme. 

PM Skerrit added, “While housing traditionally has not been a primary responsibility of any Government, this Labour Party Government has recognized our social responsibility to our people. Natural events have also reminded us of how important it is to a family to have a safe and secure dwelling.” 

This Government has facilitated thousands of families to own their own homes by several mechanisms, including the provision of funds at low-interest rates to financial institutions; the provision of cash and building materials to assist families in building their own homes, and in most cases, the Government has financed and constructed homes for vulnerable families. 

This year Government will construct no less than 700 new homes for vulnerable individuals and families across our country. It is important to note that we have committed financing to achieve this. 

PM Skerrit said, “There are several components of the Housing Revolution, but I will focus on the newest component, “The Future Housing Programme”, targeting young professionals and young people in our country.”

The Programme was formally launched on July 17, 2022, and has gathered tremendous interest from our young people. Under this Programme Government will construct homes which be available for purchase by young people employed in the public service or private sector in Dominica and to Dominicans residing in the diaspora.

Dominica commenced the first Phase of the Programme under the theme “Empowerment through Ownership – A Path to Generational Wealth”.

 The first Phase will target young people residing in Dominica and employed in the public and private sectors. These homes will contain two (2) or three (3) bedrooms with an option to add other amenities based on the individual’s financial ability. To ensure the full participation and input of the youth to whom this Programme is targeted, they have established a 21-member group made up of young men and women within the public and private sectors who will serve as advisors to the Government on this initiative. These millennials have already started working fervently on the Programme and have made recommendations on the master plan to include designs, amenities and landscaping.

The group has also recommended a residence policy and a community management plan for the development. Under this Programme, the Government will construct homes in Warner and in Cotton Hill in Portsmouth in the first instance. 

The Government intends to extend this Programme to Grand Bay and Hillsborough Gardens in the second Phase. PM Skerrit is pleased to announce that they have tremendous support from the unions. A number of financial institutions have consented to partner with us to provide mortgages at discounted interest rates as low as 4 percent. 

These institutions include the National Bank of Dominica, West Coast Credit Union, Central Cooperative Credit Union, Republic Bank, Marigot Cooperative Credit Union, and National Cooperative Credit Union. Also, some suppliers of building materials, furniture and appliances, insurance companies and contractors have accepted the invitation to partner with the Government in this effort, recognizing that these investment opportunities can result in positive wealth creation and growth for all sectors of the economy. The homes will be sold at highly discounted rates to the young people of our country.

Further, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit also announced the programmes launched in the last fiscal year. He stated that the Government remains strongly committed to improving housing for all the people of this Nation, especially the most vulnerable. 

“We are determined to achieve resilience in this sector. To that end, we have revised our building codes to ensure that new and renovated homes are structurally sound. We have supported our people in repairing and rebuilding their homes, and we are building new homes for our citizens. In the last Fiscal Year, 213 families were provided with keys to new resilient homes,”said the prime minister. 

He further outlined that On September 16, 2020, the Government introduced yet another innovative and transformational programme for Dominicans 40 years and younger, a programme which provides $10,000 to first-time home builders and purchasers of a home. 

PM Skerrit underscored, “I am delighted to inform this that the impact of this Programme on the youth has been tremendous. To date, the applications of two hundred (200) young people have been approved, and disbursements continue to be made for the purchase of building materials, payment of land/property transfer fees, construction-related services and labour costs.”