(Grant) Facilitating Increased Access to Affordable Housing through Inclusive Market Approaches - Phase 1 - HFHI



Approval Date
Proposal Focus
Core Focus
Secondary Cities
Country Type


Monrovia is the capital of Liberia and the country was established in 1847 by freed slaves from the United States of America. The country was plagued with two civil wars from 1989 to 1997 and 1999 to 2003 which resulted in major loss of life, internal displacement and the destruction of existing infrastructure, including the electricity grid, transportation networks, housing stock and the financial system. Liberia has 16 indigenous ethnic groups and several foreign minorities (Lebanese, Indians and West Africans). Indigenous groups account for 95% of the population. The recognized ethnic groups include: the Gio (or Dan), Mano, Bassa, Kpelle, Grebo, Vai, Gola, Kru, Krahn, Mandingo (or Mandinka), Fante, Dei (or Dewoin), Bella, Mende, Loma, and the Americo-Liberians or Congo people. In 2014, Liberia was estimated to have a population of 4.4 million people. It is estimated that 1.1 million people live in Monstserrada County, of which Monrovia is the capital. The greater Monrovia area includes 12 local government authorities, two cities (Monrovia and Paynesville), nine townships, and one borough. Monrovia was built for a population of 500,000 inhabitants, but the population exceeds 1 million people, about a quarter of the total population of Liberia. Monrovia has an increasing need for affordable housing and basic services, and population growth has placed increasing pressure on existing infrastructure. The majority of Liberians lack decent and affordable housing, and live with substandard housing conditions in slums. It is estimated that 70% of the population of greater Monrovia live in informal settlements, and lack the financial capital to improve their living conditions. Liberia is one of the poorest countries in the world (ranked 175th out of 187 countries in 2014), with approximately 85% of the population below the international poverty line. It is also one of the most urbanized in the region. Almost 50% of Liberia’s entire population resides in Montserrado County, of which approximately 70% reside in Monrovia. After decades of both natural and man-made disasters, the country is still recovering from the lingering effects of its civil wars, which ended in 2003. Changing demographics, unplanned urbanization, and climate change have augmented existing vulnerabilities, and point to a future in which disasters will increasingly threaten the national economy, its population, and Liberia’s sustainable development. The delivery of affordable housing and upgrading of the informal settlements is a fundamental part city development and needs to be addressed in an inclusive and comprehensive manner that aligns with the overall City Development Strategy (CDS) being developed. Improving the efficiency of value chains for low-income housing is essential to enable homeowners to participate in and have access to adequate housing. This requires the analysis of current value chains across heterogeneous market systems, both formal and informal and highly complex subsectors that include the land market; water and sanitation; household energy and electricity; hazard and risk vulnerabilities; housing, construction and building materials subsector; financing mechanisms(microfinance and savings) and housing support services (legal and technical assistance). The process involves a gaining a deeper understanding of existing laws and governance structures that contribute towards creating an enabling environment for housing delivery, as well as identifying gaps and blockages.
The main objective for Phase 1, Year 1 of the project will focus on the development of an inclusive and sustainable slum upgrading and affordable housing strategy/framework and housing prototypes that are developed in consultation with key public, private and community stakeholders and align with the broader vision of the City Development Strategy (CDS) for Monrovia. HFHI will manage the entire market mapping of the housing value chain including land, household affordability, family composition, building material supply, construction skills, access to finance and government affordability. HFHI will identify and support the use of a number of market mapping field tested tools in order to find the viable balance between household, government and private sector affordability, capacities and appetite for risk. The design of the housing prototypes will include housing finance, housing improvement support and technical support and consider in-situ and greenfield developments contexts. A housing prototype will seek to balance the appropriate combination of financing (public and private), housing improvement support and technical services (associated with the specific housing improvements) that are needed to support families improve their housing conditions. They will also test the delivery mechanisms to make these services sustainable and scalable. The prototypes will be designed in partnership with all actors, and as per the needs and priorities of families and communities. We define Housing Finance, Housing Improvement Support and Technical Support as follows: Housing Finance: Housing finance can refer to lien-based mortgages to acquire land/entire homes or small, non-mortgage-backed loans offered in succession to support the existing incremental building practices of low-income populations. It can include a range of financial services that support informal shelter improvements such as home repair and expansions, the addition of water and sanitation services, energy efficiency upgrades, and land documentation. Housing Improvement Support: Includes a range of activities such as the introduction of more affordable construction materials to housing micro insurance, information dissemination, and construction laborer certification, as well as any other activities to support the non-financial aspects of the housing value chain through supporting small businesses, NGOs or other partners. Technical Support: Includes providing households (via capacitated microfinance institutions and other organizations) with the following support depending on their needs and priorities: • General Pre-prepared Information – Brochures/Pamphlets, Technical Sheets, and Construction Guides – for example regarding lists of recommended builders and suppliers, referrals to MFIs, financial education, construction technical brochures, construction manuals, video etc.; • Pre-construction Advise and Services - Client Consultations and Plan Development – for example design or services advice, assistance with permits, secure tenure support, builder training, assistance with estimation of materials and labor scheduling, recommendations on materials/techniques, inspection of works etc.); and • Construction Assistance - Advise and Services - typically associated with projects requiring more than one site visit and require advance construction skills associated with repairs, extensive maintenance and more complex home improvements, substantive renovations and extensions and building new homes and Basic, Non-Structural and Structural Work, which consists of advice, quality control, and technical assistance or details, quality inspections, structural design, disaster risk mitigation etc.: o Basic - review of simple home improvement work, repairs or installation of utilities etc.; o Non-Structural - non-load-bearing masonry, bricklaying or carpentry, electrical and plumbing works, and non-structural roofing etc.; and o Structural - load-bearing masonry, bricklaying or carpentry, structural roofing, earthquake or other disaster mitigation etc.. ? What are the expected outcomes of the project? [The Project Outcomes are the direct short- term benefits produced by the project outputs and their utilisation. What is the benefit and who will benefit? Please also include indicators that will be used to measure the outcomes, who will measure them and how.] HFHI will be responsible for the delivery of output 2.2 – 1 slum upgrading/affordable housing strategy developed – under Programe Outcome 2. As per the Liberia Country Programme Framework the following indicators to measure Outcome 1: Quantitative Indicators Baseline Target Number of resilient slum upgrading and affordable housing strategies produced and informed by community profiling data that are endorsed by relevant national, local governments and slum dwellers 0 1
1. Component Rapid Desktop Assessment 1.1 Activity: Research Concept Development 1.2 Activity: Overall Desktop Research, Data Gathering & Review – Housing Sector that includes MD & DR3 elements 1.3 Activity: Data Analysis & Report Writing 2. Component Hazards & Vulnerability Assessment 2.1 Activity: Macro-Level Assessment – identification of critical issues 2.2 Activity: Community-Level Assessment – identification of critical issues 2.3 Activity: Consolidation & Analysis – Identification of consequences of critical actions 2.4 Activity: Prioritization & Decision Process (Communities & Local Government) for Key Actions for Implementation 2.5 Activity: Stakeholder Consultation 3. Component Housing Market Development – Year 1 3.1 Activity: Desk Review and Planning 3.2: Activity: Informational Interviews with Local Market Actors 3.3 Activity: Draft Value Chain Map & Stylized Housing Market Segmentation 3.4 Activity: Value Chain Mapping & Activity Planning 3.5 Activity: Orientation of HFH Staff/Partners during Housing Value Chain Analysis Exercise 3.6 Activity: Housing Value Chain Analysis 3.7 Activity: Identification & Assessment of Potential Housing Market Based Solutions 3.8 Activity: Stakeholder Consultation 4. Component Stakeholder Consultation 4.1 Activity: Working with SDI on Community Consultation 4.2 Activity: Local Stakeholder Roundtable Discussions 4.3 Activity: Consultation with Stakeholders for Endorsement 5. Component Slum Upgrading and Affordable Housing Policy Framework & Housing Prototypes 5.1 Activity: Preparation of draft Slum Upgrading Policy Framework & Housing Interventions 5.2 Activity: Finalization of Policy Framework & Prototypes 5.3 Activity: Stakeholder Consultation
Expected Impacts and Results
Habitat will develop a logic framework to articulate the assumptions about how each activity will contribute to the project’s objectives and indicators. To effectively monitor project progress and results, Habitat will collect information and data from participating market actors as follows: Step 1: Discuss indicators with partners - After signing an MOU, a meeting will be arranged with the partner to review: a) why Habitat needs to collect monitoring data; b) discussion of each indicator and why it is being monitored; and; c) identification of a contact person for Habitat to work with to collect baseline data. Step 2: Baseline data collection - To collect baseline data, meetings will be arranged with the partner’s designated representatives. Baseline data will be recorded by Habitat that will reflect the latest period for which data is available. Step 3: Baseline data entry - Once baseline data is collected, the information will be entered into a database spreadsheet. A worksheet will be created for each partner (which includes information on sales) and this information will feed into a worksheet that will consolidate the results. Step 4: Annual Data Collection and Entry- After the end of each year, data from each partner will be collected. Once annual data is collected it will be entered into the appropriate spreadsheets. The annual data will be compared with the baseline data and will be consolidated in order to produce an M&E report. Non-sensitive information will be shared with project stakeholders.