FMBN to boost Operations to Address Housing Needs in Nigeria

Housing programmes
Housing programmes

The Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria is prepared to overhaul and change its operating procedures to satisfy the Nigerian population's need for housing.

At its 2024 Management Retreat taged "Transformational Innovation for Sustainable Development during Uncertain Periods" held in Niger State on Friday, the Managing Director of the Bank, Madu Hamman, pledged his dedication.

He mentioned that the overhaul will swiftly revamp and modernize to address Nigeria's lack of adequate housing by providing affordable, respectable, and high-quality homes to the Nigerian people.

Recently, Ahmed Dangiwa, the Minister of Housing and Urban Development, gave a poor performance rating to both the Federal Housing Authority and the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria with regards to their effectiveness in delivering housing to all societal groups.

Hamman asserts that the vast shortfall in available homes within the nation, impacting millions of Nigerians, presents a significant problem that desperately calls for immediate and creative solutions.

He stated that everyone has a fundamental right to shelter, which is essential for progressing both socially and economically. The Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, being the primary mortgage bank, is tasked with a vital duty to tackle the issue of housing. Through its diverse programs and offerings, the FMBN has been making it possible for those with low to medium incomes to secure mortgages and own homes. But, the current measures are falling short of fulfilling the increasing need for housing and meeting the aspirations of the citizens of Nigeria.

"Numerous limitations are present, such as the necessity to increase the bank's capital. It brings me pleasure to mention that the issue is being addressed by the minister, with plans to boost the bank's capital by N500 billion. In addition, there are restrictions on how much we can lend to a single borrower, as determined by the Central Bank of Nigeria's rules, and we are currently working through these with our regulatory authorities."

He further outlined the constraints faced by the bank, including its ownership structure where the Federal Government is the sole shareholder, and the outdated Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), National Housing Fund (NHF), and Land Use Act.

He explained that the bank had introduced groundbreaking changes, developing fresh approaches, business strategies, markets, and solutions that have the potential to shake up the existing norms and produce beneficial effects on society.

He further mentioned that the bank's process of digital changeover was nearing completion at 92 percent, and the additional components that accompany it were 87 percent finished.

In an effort to improve the efficiency of the bank's operations, the bank has developed and sanctioned a range of progressive strategies that align its operations and methodologies with globally recognized standards. These include a comprehensive risk management system, a framework for corporate governance, policies for preventing money laundering and terrorism financing, as well as a framework for managing environmental and social risks, among other policies.

"Moreover, the head of the FMBN articulated that to support the bank's objective of offering Nigerians housing finance that is both affordable and accessible, the FMBN has made it easier by reducing the down payment requirements for NHIF managed loans."

Hamman states that the bank has overhauled its offerings by launching innovative products and services aimed at attracting a broader clientele while also better serving current customers. The bank has introduced new offerings such as the National Housing Fund (NHF) individual construction loan and the rent-to-own option, in addition to revamping the cooperative housing development loan.

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