“Jamaican banks sleep at the wheel” | New
Halton Development Management chairman and chief executive Paul Walker on Friday criticized Jamaican banks for what he called their refusal to participate in the investment in housing development.
Walker, who was speaking at the official groundbreaking ceremony for Paradise Glade development in Rosewell, Clarendon, praised government stakeholders such as the National Environment and Planning Agency and the Clarendon Municipal Corporation, even as he criticized local financial institutions. .
“Banks have yet to realize that the government has a mandate to provide housing for Jamaicans,” he said, highlighting measures the government has put in place, such as changes to the arrangement with respect to intergenerational mortgages. have lower interest rates and a lower cost on transfer taxes, which ultimately reduces the cost of legal fees.
Walker berated the financial industry for failing to play its part in partnering with developers to make home ownership a reality for many.
“They are sleeping behind the wheel and what we see happening now is that some projects are funded by the Exim Bank of China. I’m actually looking for sources of funding overseas, in addition to what’s being done with my investment banking partners, to fund the projects that we have in our pipeline, as we find that the banking industry is not not a willing partner in this mission to provide housing solution, and that’s a problem, ”Walker said.
UNITS ALREADY SOLD
Highlighting the experience of one of his partners developing 75 units in Hellshire, he said the units were already sold and they were still struggling in the bank.
“How did you get 75 units, 100% of which are sold, but you can’t let the bank sit with you and say, ‘I’ll hold your hand since I don’t trust you… let’s find a way to make this happen. . ? He asked.
Walker, after venting his frustration, appealed to guest speaker Pearnel Charles Jr., Minister of Housing, Urban Renewal, Environment and Climate Change, to “put the bankers in a room, lock the door and tell them ‘we need a solution’, ”he said, adding that this is what it will take to move the bottleneck forward in promoting housing solutions.
There was, however, good news from Charles Jr., who announced that his department would be launching a series of talks with developers to hear them.
“What are your concerns, your suggestions? Do you have what will help us create an environment that will allow you to shine? He asked, stressing that if they were successful, so would the government.
Paradise Glade is located between Sandy Bay and Palmers Cross in Clarendon. It comprises a small planned community of 18 two-bedroom, two-bathroom, and one three-bedroom units on five acres of land.
Among the features of the units are: private master bathroom with walk-in shower, Jack-and-Jill bathroom with tub, rooftop solar water heater, ceiling fans, sliding vinyl windows and sink / vanity area integrated.
The development will also include a children’s park and play area, a soccer field and a remote portal with smartphone access.