Renting is the norm in the Dominican Republic
A recent report by the Inter-American Development Bank lists the Dominican Republic as having one of the highest rates of families renting instead of being homeowners. According to the report, one in every three Dominicans lives in a rented house. The study included 21 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. The average for the region is one out of every five households.
The study “Rental Housing Wanted” highlights the key role rentals play in urban areas and their potential for serving the needs of a broad variety of growing population groups. The study also identified a large stock of unoccupied homes that could help ease the regional housing crunch.
According to the study, Colombia is the Latin American country where renting is the most common (38 percent of all households). In the Dominican Republic the ratio is one in three households and in Honduras, Ecuador, Bolivia and Jamaica it is one in four. The five cities with the highest rates of rented homes are Bogota, Santo Domingo, Cali, Medellin and Quito.
As a result of these findings, the IDB is engaging in a dialogue with countries of the region to explore how a policy to promote rental markets could complement their broader housing policies initiatives, establishing incentives both for landlords and renters, updating rental sector regulations and integrating innovative housing policies into broader concepts of sustainable urban planning.
“What this study proposes is to open up new, unexplored territory in housing policy,” said Vicente Fretes, chief of the IDB’s Fiscal and Municipal Management Division and co-author of the report. “It’s not a question of replacing the focus on home ownership but rather of complementing it. It’s sound advice, taking into account the advantages for fiscal sustainability and for containing urban sprawl,” Fretes said.
The IDB is recommending that policies be relatively simple, such as expediting home repossessions or creating a system of rental guarantees. It highlights that this would help expand the supply of homes available for rent, creating incentives to add to the market at least part of the considerable stock of vacant homes, which in some countries represents as much as 20 percent of all homes.
In the case of the Dominican Republic, current laws favor renters in legal disputes with the property owners. The system effectively allows the renter to violate multiple contractual agreements and these cases are often tied up in litigation for years.
Source: DR1, http://publications.iadb.org/
Category: DR News |