Mpumalanga Pre-Financed Housing

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Focus Areas: Housing

This project sees uTshani pre-finance houses in the Mpumalanga province. Houses were built in Standerton, Qwaqwa, and Delmas in Mpumalanga using cement bricks. It aimed to construct 1000 houses in the province. To date a total of 152 houses have been constructed. The Standerton project aimed to construct 100 housing units of which 74 were approved and 63 built while 50 were planned in Delmas and 19 have been constructed. The house has a kitchen, two bedrooms, a bathroom (with bath, hand basins and toilet), and a living room. It has two big windows in the front and a window for every room to allow sufficient lighting and ventilation. Pre-Financing was done in September 2008 and recovery of funds from government (in the form of the housing subsidies) was based on the number of houses built. These projects are a key component of uTshani’s activitities, both in terms of gaining skills for other projects and earning fees to cover non-recoverable overheads, such as rentals for concrete mixing machines. uTshani houses are bigger than government subsidy RDP houses (Reconsturction and Development Programme). This is because beneficiarites contribute labour to construction. Funding from government is dependent on submission of required claim forms after inspections and validation by provincial inspectors and project managers.

Construction at Standerton was initially subcontracted to JEFISA, a construction company in Mpumalanga, who had to work collaboratively with the local Community Construction Management Teams (CCMT), community groups and Super CCMT. The CCMT is responsible for local project management and transferring information about the project to beneficiaries while the Super CCMT is the national team, called in to attend to special issues like exchange programmes and trouble shooting how best to capacitate local CCMTs in project implementation. In the course of development, many challenges experienced within the project have led to the cancellation of the project by the Provincial Department. The Federation met with the Provincial Housing Department to address the cancellation and salvage the Standerton project. It was agreed that the existing 23 units be completed and the balance of 37 houses be re-assessed. Challenges for the project include getting enough beneficiaries for approval.

Location: Standerton, Qwaqwa, and Delmas, South Africa
Bunita Kohler (+27) 21 689 9408 View Website
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Project information updated: 20 March 2014

Project in depth

Detailed Information

The South African Alliance of Community Organisation Resource Centre (CORC), Informal Settlement Network (ISN), Federation of the Urban Poor (FEDUP) and uTshani, the national urban poor fund embarked on this project in 2009.  All pre-financing projects in South Africa are peoples housing process projects. Before project activity, uTshani and the Federation signed contracts with the Mpumalanga government for subsidies and technical assistance. uTshani covers construction costs and is then repaid by the government. Besides the establishment and facilitation grants, negotiations for additional funding resulted in the Mpumalanga Housing Department increasing the subsidy quantum scale to a higher band compared to the amounts as at the time of signing contracts with the Department. This meant a difference of R8 994 (USD 1 124.25) per beneficiary.
The pre-financing model will be sustainable provided payments are received within stipulated frame frames. Sustainability depends on securing an adequate system of pre-financing and on greater capacity within the communities. The revolving fund mechanism allows for more houses to be built. The uTshani process also sees beneficiaries contribute labour and management of construction. Community membera have been given project management training to ensure the project finishes on time, within budget and to acceptable quality. Practical skills in brick laying, plastering, painting, procurement, labour and material management, community project management, storage and logistics, and electrification are also learnt. This means that costs are saved and maintenance can be done by beneficiaries in future. 


Funding Information



Fully funded

Implementing Partners

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Federation of the Urban Poor (FEDUP)

Community Organisation Resource Centre (CORC)

uTshani Fund