All You Need to Know about the National Housing Fund and NHF Loan

Affordable housing is a major issue for the low and middle class earners in Nigerians.

Rent on the other hand keeps increasing on a yearly basis. The low and middle class earners rarely have any savings left after paying rent.

To curb this housing issues, policies and plans have been set up by different governments in Nigeria but the strategy to implement most time yield little or no result.

All You Need to Know about the National Housing Fund and NHF loan

Often, the housing projects by government are hijacked by the rich folks or individuals in power thereby denying the lower class opportunity of directly subscribing and getting their own homes.

The National Housing Fund and the NHF loan is geared to permanently solve this housing problem in Nigeria.

In this article, I will share some vital information on the National Housing Funds

Vital information on the National Housing Fund and NHF Loan

  1. About the National Housing Funds and NHF Loan.
  2. Who can contribute to the National Housing Fund.
  3. How the Scheme is funded.
  4. Accessing NHF Loan.
  5. Who is eligible to apply for the scheme.
  6. Documents required to apply for the loan etc

Before going through above stated, below is the Legal Framework establishing the National Housing Fund.

NATIONAL HOUSING FUND LEGAL FRAMEWORK

Act 3 of 1992 established the National Housing Fund (NHF).
Section 2 of the Act outlines the aims and objectives of the fund. Sections 20, 21 and 22 defines the offences and penalties for non-compliance. Act 3 is being amended to bring it in line with new realities aimed at strengthening the National Houding Fund.
Access the abridged version of the NHF Act.

 

AIMS & OBJECTIVES OF THE NATIONAL HOUSING FUND

  • Mobilization of funds for the provision of affordable residential houses for Nigerians.
  • Commercial and Merchant Banks to invest 10% of their loans and advances portfolio.
  • Insurance Companies are mandated to invest 20% of non-life and 40% life funds in the housing sector with 50% of these directly in the funds.
  • Financial contributions of the Federal Government.

HOW THE NHF SCHEME IS FUNDED

  • Mandatory contribution of 2.5% of monthly income of Nigerians earning =N=3000 and above per annum.
  • Commercial and Merchant Banks to invest 10% of their loans and advances portfolio.
  • Insurance Companies are mandated to invest 20% of non-life and 40% life funds in the housing sector with 50% of these directly in the funds.
  • Financial contributions of the Federal Government.

 

PROCEDURE TO REGISTER  FOR THE NATIONAL HOUSING FUND

All Nigerians in employment, whether self-employed or in paid employment, are required by the NHF Act No.3 of 1992 to contribute 2.5% of their basic salary/income to the fund. The Procedure for registration is as follows:

  • The Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) will supply Employer Registration Form (NHF1) to employers.
  • Employers will complete form NHF1 and return to the nearest branch of the Federal Mortgage bank of Nigeria.
  • Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria will register the Employer and issue an employer’s registration number.
  • Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria will issue form NHF2 to employers for completion by employees or directly to self employed or individual.
  • Employee will complete the form NHF2 and return to the employer.
  • The employer or self-employed individuals will return completed form NHF2 to Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria.
  • Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria will register Employees on Form NHF2 and allocate employees participation number to each employee/self-employed individual.
  • Federal Mortgage Bank will issue a passbook to each of the registered employees where the monthly deduction of his/her 2.5% basic salary will be posted by the employer
  • At this point, an employee is now a registered participant of the National Housing Fund.
  • Employer will commence deduction of contributions at source. Such deductions/contributions are remitted to Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria with schedule of payment indicating the amount contributed by each employee and the period covered.
  • Self–employed contributors will also commence monthly remittances of contributions to FMBN.
  • Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria will accept contributions and issue receipts for payments.

 

CONDITIONS FOR REFUND

  • Refund is made to a contributor who has attained 60 years of age or has put in 35 years in service.
  • Refund is also made to a contributor that has obtained a loan, liquidated the loan and has attained the age of 60 years or have put in 35 years in service.
  • Retired from employment and becomes incapable of continuing the contribution to the Fund.
  • Refund is made to the next-of-kin of a contributor in case of a deceased contributor.

Documents required for refund of contribution

  • Application letter requesting for refund of contribution.
  • Letter of offer of appointment.
  • Birth certificate or Declaration of age certificate.
  • Completed NHF Contribution withdrawal forms.
  • Bank Account details through which refund would be paid.
  • Medical report of incapability to continue contributions due to failing health
  • Letter of administration & Death Certificate (in case of a deceased contributor)
  • Evidence of contribution. (Receipt for self-employed contributor)
  • Biometric Verification Number (BVN)

 

BENEFITS

  • Housing loan of up to 90% of the cost of the house.
  • Interest on loans remains fixed throughout the life of the mortgage at 6% p.a.
  • Long period of repayment of up to 30 years.
  • Contributions can serve as additional old age security.
  • Up to N15 million can be borrowed.
  • Refunds with 2% interest on retirement.
  • Loan repayment is about the same as a typical monthly rent.
  • Every contributor has: a lifetime registration number, a passbook for personal recording of contributions and the account statement.

 

ELIGIBILITY

  • Registration via NHF 1 (employer) and NHF 2 (employee) forms.
  • Deducted monthly contributions remitted to FMBN promptly (At least 6 months contributions should be made)
  • Passbook to be updated by employer and is transferable from one employment to th other.
  • Yearly statement of cumulative contributions plus accrued interest
  • Apply through any accredited Primary Mortgage Bank(PMB)
  • Applicant must provide satisfactory evidence of regular income.

 

Here are the frequently asked questions about National Housing Fund and NHF Loan

Who can benefit from the scheme?

The NHF scheme is for Nigerians in all sectors of the economy, particularly those within the low and medium income levels who cannot afford commercial housing loans e.g. civil servants, traders, artisans, commercial drivers etc. Any intending beneficiary must be a registered contributor and up to date with his/her contributions.

 

How can only 2.5% of my monthly basic salary or income be sufficient to obtain a loan, to build a house?

The 2.5% of monthly basic salary contribution qualify you to access the loan. The pool of funds created by the contributors nationwide becomes available to any contributor to borrow from, after contributing for a minimum of six months.

 

How does a contributor obtain an NHF loan?

A contributor interested in obtaining NHF loan applies through a registered and duly accredited mortgage loan originator (e.g. Primary Mortgage Banks), who packages and forwards the application to FMBN.

Is it the monthly contributions that determine the loan’s amount?

No. the loan amount is determined by the applicants affordability. This entails his/her income level that will enable repayment of the loan.

What are the documents required when applying for the loan?

Documents required to process a loan include:

  1. Completed application form.
  2. Photocopy of title documents
  3. Current valuation report on the proposed house to buy or bills of quantities (BOQ) for the house to build.
  4. Three years tax clearance certificate.
  5. Evidence of NHF participation
  6. Copy of pay slips for the previous three months.
  7. Equity contribution or personal stake of 30%, 20% or 10% depending on the loan amount applied for.

 

What is the mode of repayment?

NHF housing loan are repaid on monthly installments from the income of the beneficiary. This mode of repayment has the advantage of being both affordable and convenient.

 

Can a contributor obtain NHF loan, if a mortgage loan originator is not in his/her state?

Yes. A prospective applicant can liaise with a mortgage loan originator (e.g. PMB etc.) in Nigeria to process a loan application.

 

Are there restrictions as to where a contributor can build his/her house?

The property can be located anywhere in Nigeria. The applicant must however provide acceptable title documents to the land.

 

How can a low income earner get collateral for the loan?

The only collateral is the property to secure the loan for. No other collateral is needed for the loan.

 

How many times can I get NHF loan?

A contributor can only obtain NHF loan facility once in a lifetime.

 

What is the maximum loans amount and repayment time for NHF loans?

A contributor is eligible to access a maximum loan amount of =N=15 million repayable over a maximum period of 30 years at an affordable interest rate of 6%.

 

Can I obtain NHF loan to purchase a piece of land to build a house?

No. A prospective applicant who wishes to obtain a loan to build a house is expected to have his/her land as well as an acceptable title to the land prior to the application for NHF loan.

 

Can I get the loan as an individual to build my house or must I buy a government owned estate or from a private estate developer?

Yes. You can apply as an individual for NHF loan to develop a land or buy directly from government consort estate or private estate developer.

 

Conclusion

Through the National Housing Fund Loan Scheme, it will be hard for the rich folks to hijack building projects as no single person can access the loan more than ones and projects are done on individual basis. Should you need more information on the National Housing Fund or the NHF Loan, kindly ask in the comment section below or contact the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria.

Information for this post was sourced from the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria website.

Also Read: How Government Frustrates SMEs in Nigeria

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Francis Nwokike

Francis is a Passionate Social Entrepreneur. Love discussing new trends in Business and Marketing. A Startup consultant. A good listener. Love to help that your business grow.

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