Financial crisis / Housing Finance


Housing Finance Report – 2012

The Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing presented her thematic report on Housing Finance at the 67th session of the General Assembly, on October 2012. In this report, the Rapporteur analyses the ruling paradigm of housing policies that focus on housing finance as the main means of promoting homeownership. The report assesses the impact of prevalent housing finance policies on the right to adequate housing of those living in poverty.

The Special Rapporteur concludes that the full realization of the right to adequate housing, without discrimination, cannot be promoted solely by financial mechanisms and requires broader and more holistic housing policies and State interventions. She calls for a paradigm shift from housing policies based on the financialization of housing to a human rights-based approach to housing policies.

To download the report in English, click here.


Financial Crisis Report – 2009

Housing is not simply a commodity, but a right of every human being, a place to live with safety, peace and dignity. Despite that, people around the world are under the threat of eviction for being unable to pay rent or mortgages.

The 2008 housing market crisis in the United States affected the common belief that the private market is capable of providing adequate housing for all. Many analysts point to a lack of regulations for the financial system, but the crisis was also a reflection of significant flaws in housing policies, such as the excessive focus on home-ownership as the sole solution to ensure access to housing.

Home-ownership can be the best option for many people, but to achieve adequate housing for all, a variety of solutions are required. These include tax incentives, microcredit, self-management, cooperatives, urbanization of settlements, lease programs, direct subsidies to the poor and public housing. Markets, even the regulated ones, cannot provide proper housing for all and an active public sector is fundamental.

To read the report in English, click on the green button below. To read the report in the other UN official languages, click here (select a language at the right side column).

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