In what appears to be a shift away from the previous focus on providing housing for the poorest of the poor, government is now looking to help bring more lower-income households into the formal property market.In a bid to speed up broader participation in SA’s housing market, government is creating a title deeds restoration grant to help speed up the registration of state-subsidised houses in the deeds office.The title deeds restoration grant will be funded through a reprioritisation from the human settlements development grant, which will be reduced by R7.2bn over the next three years.Finance minister Malusi Gigaba said in his budget speech that though this will slow the delivery of new houses and serviced sites, the sector is still expected to build 316,813 houses and upgrade 417,391 sites in informal settlements by 2020/2021.The Centre for Affordable Housing Finance estimates that about 1.8m — or 29% of the 6.2m formal residential properties on the SA deeds registry — were financ...

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