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Human settlements are a critical component of rural and urban development. The importance of access to adequate housing is enshrined in Section 26 of the Constitution. While the various housing interventions have influenced the trajectory of housing delivery in post -apartheid South Africa, the rate of RDP housing delivery has significantly declined in recent years.

While there has been some effort to ensure that state housing products operate in a functioning property market, the exact parameters of this market remain unclear. Additionally, there is no recognition of the role played by small-scale developers in the property market. This is concerning, as these developers are a significant part of township property markets, which are a thriving segment of South Africa’s rental housing market.

The draft policy acknowledges the undervaluation of subsidised housing in housing markets but lacks clear policy interventions to address market failure. We recommend that the government develop interventions to integrate the resale market with regulated housing markets and establish public housing resale standards aligned with existing mandates. This will unlock the asset potential of ‘RDP housing’ while maintaining the marketability of state-subsidised housing products. We also believe that the proposed Transaction Support Centres will transform the township property market landscape.