Since 1996, the NHFC has been developing and testing various mechanisms, to not only mobilise but also broaden access to housing finance for the "unbankable" majority, that is, the working poor of South Africa. However, given the great divide that persists between those that have access to credit and those that do not, the housing backlog continues to grow.

Research undertaken by the NHFC suggests that the greater percentages of households applying to accredited lenders are employed, and have both the means and willingness to access and service housing credit. This end-beneficiary housing market essentially requires access to a diversity of products and a variety of channels.

To create a robust sustainable housing finance market in South Africa, partnerships at the development, wholesale and retail levels are needed to provide innovative and affordable housing finance products and varied housing stock options. The NHFC is quite clear that the combined efforts of the public and private sectors remains critical if the demands are to be met; and constantly seeks mutually beneficial partnerships.

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