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  • Types of housing subsidies

Types of housing subsidies

Individual subsidy
This subsidy is for low-income households wishing to buy residential property for the first time and may be used to purchase an existing house including the land on which the house stands. This subsidy can only be used once by a successful applicant. In 2011 households with an income of R1 500 per month or less are eligible for a subsidy of R43 506. Households with an income between R1 501 and R 3500 per month are eligible for a subsidy of 41 027 and must pay a contribution of R 2 479.

Consolidation Subsidy
This is for people who have previously received a subsidy, live on a serviced site and want to build a better house such as building a top structure. This money can only be used for building as services have already been provided on the site. In 2011 households with an income under R1 500 per month are eligible for a subsidy of 43 506. Households with an income between R1 501 and R 3500 per month are eligible for a subsidy of 41 027 and must pay a contribution of R2 479.

Institutional Subsidy
This is for non profit organisations like churches, local authorities or housing associations (also called “social housing institutions”) that want to provide rented accommodate to people from lower income groups. It is called an institutional subsidy because it goes to the institution who can rent out the housing to different families. A family who lives in this type of rented accommodation does not jeopardise their chance to apply for their own subsidy at a later date. This is because the subsidy for rented housing is taken in the name of the organisation and not in the name of the individual. The homes developed through the institutional subsidy must remain in the ownership of the organisation for at least four years after they are built. In 2011, the subsidy for the institutional subsidy per household is 41 027 which is paid directly to the non-profit organisation. The organisation must add capital.


People’s Housing Process establishment grants
These are special subsidies that are available to communities, or organised groups of households to enhance their housing subsidy by building or organising the building of their own homes themselves. By using their own labour rather than paying someone else, these households can make their housing subsidy and personal contribution go further by building better quality and/or larger houses for less money. An add-on of up R570 per subsidy is available under this scheme. In addition, the People’s Housing Process can also include the following support:

  • access to land that can be serviced,
  • training opportunities, and
  • technical assistance.


Rural subsidy
This subsidy is available to people who don’t have formal tenure rights to the land on which they live. (Such land is owned by the government and tenure granted in terms of traditional laws and customs). The rural subsidy is available only on a project basis and beneficiaries themselves may decide on how to use their subsidies. The subsidy may be used for building houses, providing services of a combination of both. In 2011 the value of this subsidy was 43 506.

Project linked subsidy (same structure as individual)
This may be used towards purchasing a house, and the land on which it stands, in an approved Municipal housing. This is usually within a municipal housing project. The subsidy is paid directly to the Municipality that is building the housing. Households with an income of R1 500 per month or less are eligible for a subsidy of 43 506, Households with an income between R1 501 and R 3 500 per month are eligible for a subsidy of R41 027 and must contribute R2 479.

Discount benefit scheme
This scheme promotes home ownership among tenants of publicly-owned rental housing (municipal and provincial). From April, 2006, purchasers can receive a discount on the selling price of the property. In many cases, this amount is greater than the purchase price. When this happens the property is transferred free of any further costs. Some Municipalities have already transferred much of their housing stock to tenants who have utilised the Discount Benefit Scheme.

Relocation assistance
This is for home owners who are locked into paying for home loans they cannot afford. The loan must have been from an accredited lender and the borrower must have defaulted on at least three payments. This subsidy will help them purchase a home they can afford A person who is eligible for relocation assistance must enter into a relocation agreement, so as to relocate to more affordable housing Households with an income of R1 500 or less are eligible for a subsidy of R31 929, Households with an income between R1 501 and R 3000 per month are eligible for a subsidy of R29 450 and must contribute R2 479.

An updated table of housing subsidies can be found on the government housing website: www.housing.gov.za

NOTE: People with are disabilities (or who are health-stricken) may receive the higher housing subsidy for Individual, Project-Linked or Relocation Assistance even if their household income is more than R1 500 but less than R3 500 (and do not have to make a personal contribution). They are also entitled to receive an amount higher than the usual subsidy amount to cover the cost of special structures to meet their needs such as a wheelchair ramp for the mobility impaired.

 

Related links:

IndividualHousingSubsidy.pdf
ConsolidationHousingSubsidyApplication.pdf
RelocationAssistanceApplication.pdf
AgedOrDisabledGrantApplication.pdf
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