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3,200 homes set to receive concession on PMC housing

03 September 2020 3,200 homes set to receive concession on PMC housing Mrs Antha By Elsie Pointe Chief executive of the Property Management Corporation, Evelina Antha has confirmed that 3,200 of the corporation’s clients are set to benefit with the 25% concession scheme from the government. First announced on Monday, the scheme is one of the measures being undertaken by the government to deal with the stress placed on the local economy by the Covid-19 pandemic. Through the concession scheme, the government will pay 25% of the monthly payments for the Property Management Corporation (PMC) and the Housing Finance Company (HFC) customers for 16 months, from September 2020 to December 2021. In regards to PMC, the concession will only be applicable for its 3,200 customers who hold a housing purchase agreement. Persons who are to receive government housing and embark on a housing purchase agreement with PMC between September 2020 and December 2021 will also benefit with the scheme. Those with house rental agreements with the PMC are however not eligible for the concession. “The government, through the ministry of finance, will refund the PMC 25% on behalf of the clients on a monthly basis,” Mrs Antha explained. “Currently, PMC has about 3,200 clients on house purchase agreement from which we are collecting a total of R4.6 million. The government will refund R1.1 million monthly to PMC.” This means that PMC’s concession will cost the government around R17.6 million in total. Added to the estimated R56 million that will go towards HFC’s concession, the entirety of the scheme reaches a substantial R73.6 million. “Over 80% of our clients are paying through salary deductions and standing orders, so we will go towards their employers to reduce the 25% from their monthly repayments and in cases of standing orders we will contact the clients individually so that they can amend their standing orders. For those making cash payments, the reduction will apply when they come to make their payments at the cashier,” said Mrs Antha whilst explaining the payment mechanisms for the next 16 months. Prior to the concession, Mrs Antha said that PMC had kick started discussions with the government earlier this year in regards to the repercussions of the pandemic. “We were assessing the financial impacts on the company and we saw that the redundancies and other challenges brought by the pandemic would very much mean that some of our clients would not be able to pay their dues. In fact, we had started providing grace periods or reductions for some, taking into account our repayment policy and based on merit,” Mrs Antha said. “Nonetheless we realised that these were only short term solutions because PMC depends on these repayments to be able to finance its operation.” “We collect R6 million in total per month but our expenses are R5.5 million, so if the cash flow is not entering our system we would be in a lot of difficulties. So we welcome this move by the government because we will not have to request for their financial support in the long run and our customers also benefit,” added Mrs Antha. As to why those renting houses with PMC will not gain from the scheme, Mrs Antha replied: “The maximum amount we charge for house rental agreements is R1,000 per month and we find this to be quite affordable compared to the local house rental market, which is why they will not benefit.” PMC has a repayment period of 25 years for its house purchase agreement in which payments are made by monthly installments and is calculated based on the income of the applicants.

R30m allocated for re-roofing and tiling project | 16 March 2020

 

R30m allocated for re-roofing and tiling project

(L to r) PS Choppy, Ms Antha and Mr Augustin during the press meet (Photo: Jude Morel)

In his State-of-the-nation address, President Danny Faure announced that the Property Management Corporation (PMC) will be undertaking certain projects through financing of the PMC bond issued at the end of January 2020.

The projects include renovation works on blocks of flats, construction of sewage systems on a number of housing estates and re-roofing of government-built houses covered with concrete tiles. A sum of R30m has been allocated for these projects.

Evelina Antha, the chief executive of PMC, accompanied by the principal secretary in the department of infrastructure, Yves Choppy, and the PMC finance manager Nelson Augustin met the press last week to provide comprehensive details with regard to the financing, implementation and technical aspect of the project.

The government last year approved the mechanism to assist homeowners to re-roof their houses. Over 100 residents living in semi-detached/terraced houses built during the years 1997 to 2005 will benefit from this project this year.

Currently, there are 754 houses with roofing tiles out of which 571 are at Roche Caiman and the rest are spread out over several districts. 80% of those houses were constructed over 20 years ago and 75% of the residents have already paid off their houses. The estates prioritised to be re-roofed in this year takes into consideration the age of the houses and reports and facts of roof leakage. The concrete tiles will be replaced with corrugated zinc aluminium sheets.

“R10 million have been allocated for the renovation of blocks of flats including re-roofing and repainting of certain blocks of flats in the districts; R10 million will be used to construct sewage treatment plants on the estate where PMC is encountering sewage issues and another R10 million will be used to re-roof the houses containing concrete roof tiles in different districts where over 100 residents will benefit from that.

Residents whose houses are more than 15 years old will have to pay 100% of the cost of renovation, whereas those residing in houses that are less than 15 years will pay only 50% of the cost of renovation.

For houses on rental, PMC will bear the cost. The 15-year- old period starts as of 2018 because all houses after 2005 are covered with proper material,” explained Ms Antha.

What is the logic behind fixing the cost to be paid? “When we were revising the scheme, we established a minimal life span for the roofing structures that we felt that the owners will invest in the maintenance and also based on the materials used during that time, we decided a cut off line. Once buying the house with PMC, the buyers knew they were responsible for the maintenance of the house,” noted Mr Choppy.

As most of the houses are semi-detached, PMC found it more practical to have a coordinated scheme and do a general renovation rather than piece-work.

The sewage projects that connect the housing estates to the sewage system are being conducted at Grand Anse, Village Lesperance and Carana Housing estates. The budget also caters for a consultancy contract for a consultant to design for sewage management for the other estates.

Mr Choppy is urging the concerned residents to welcome this project as PMC is trying to facilitate the renovation without them having to go through the hassle.

Mr Choppy stressed on the fact that the current design used by the government is still solid to deal with the effects of climate change. “But if we get cyclones, then the roofs will not resist. We are already working with other non-governmental organisations and the Planning Authority to look into this probability.”

Ms Antha noted that all those whose houses are concerned, the government will pursue the project next year. “We will come to you and together with your district administrator, we will present you with the project and will advise you when it will start. There will be a repayment scheme for the projects by the clients. PMC will do all the payments for the renovation projects but the clients will have to pay back on a monthly basis through an agreement with the PMC. But all these will be decided with each client after consultation,” concluded Ms Antha.

In general, PMC has some 5000 active clients. This year, the renovations will start at Les Mamelles (6 units); Roche Caiman (115 units); Port Glaud (12 units); Grand Anse Mahe (12 units); Anse Aux Pins (8 units); Baie Ste Anne, Praslin (10 units); English River (13 units); Mont Buxton (6 units) and Plaisance (6 units).

 

PMC Bond to be issued as from January 27 | 22 January 2020

PMC Bond to be issued as from January 27

(L to r) Ms Antha, PS Thésée and Ms Rosette during the press conference yesterday (Photo: Joena Meme)

Priority reserved for individuals for 30-days

As announced in the 2020 National Budget Speech, the five-year Bond for the Property Management Corporation (PMC), which is being guaranteed by the Government of Seychelles, is to be issued on January 27, 2020.

The bond, worth R200 million with a fixed earning rate of 5 percent per annum is being issued and managed by the Central Bank of Seychelles (CBS) and is applicable to both residents and non-residents, provided they hold an account with a local commercial bank.

Providing more details on the issuance yesterday morning, principal secretary for Finance, Damien Thésée, director of Financial Markets at CBS Gina Rosette and chief executive of PMC Evelina Antha, explained that proceeds from the sale of the bond is to finance various housing and re-roofing projects under the PMC and the purchase of the Ile Perseverance condominium project from the Seychelles Pension Fund (SPF).

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