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3,200 homes set to receive concession on PMC housing

03 September 2020 3,200 homes set to receive concession on PMC housing Mrs Antha By Elsie Pointe Chief executive of the Property Management Corporation, Evelina Antha has confirmed that 3,200 of the corporation’s clients are set to benefit with the 25% concession scheme from the government. First announced on Monday, the scheme is one of the measures being undertaken by the government to deal with the stress placed on the local economy by the Covid-19 pandemic. Through the concession scheme, the government will pay 25% of the monthly payments for the Property Management Corporation (PMC) and the Housing Finance Company (HFC) customers for 16 months, from September 2020 to December 2021. In regards to PMC, the concession will only be applicable for its 3,200 customers who hold a housing purchase agreement. Persons who are to receive government housing and embark on a housing purchase agreement with PMC between September 2020 and December 2021 will also benefit with the scheme. Those with house rental agreements with the PMC are however not eligible for the concession. “The government, through the ministry of finance, will refund the PMC 25% on behalf of the clients on a monthly basis,” Mrs Antha explained. “Currently, PMC has about 3,200 clients on house purchase agreement from which we are collecting a total of R4.6 million. The government will refund R1.1 million monthly to PMC.” This means that PMC’s concession will cost the government around R17.6 million in total. Added to the estimated R56 million that will go towards HFC’s concession, the entirety of the scheme reaches a substantial R73.6 million. “Over 80% of our clients are paying through salary deductions and standing orders, so we will go towards their employers to reduce the 25% from their monthly repayments and in cases of standing orders we will contact the clients individually so that they can amend their standing orders. For those making cash payments, the reduction will apply when they come to make their payments at the cashier,” said Mrs Antha whilst explaining the payment mechanisms for the next 16 months. Prior to the concession, Mrs Antha said that PMC had kick started discussions with the government earlier this year in regards to the repercussions of the pandemic. “We were assessing the financial impacts on the company and we saw that the redundancies and other challenges brought by the pandemic would very much mean that some of our clients would not be able to pay their dues. In fact, we had started providing grace periods or reductions for some, taking into account our repayment policy and based on merit,” Mrs Antha said. “Nonetheless we realised that these were only short term solutions because PMC depends on these repayments to be able to finance its operation.” “We collect R6 million in total per month but our expenses are R5.5 million, so if the cash flow is not entering our system we would be in a lot of difficulties. So we welcome this move by the government because we will not have to request for their financial support in the long run and our customers also benefit,” added Mrs Antha. As to why those renting houses with PMC will not gain from the scheme, Mrs Antha replied: “The maximum amount we charge for house rental agreements is R1,000 per month and we find this to be quite affordable compared to the local house rental market, which is why they will not benefit.” PMC has a repayment period of 25 years for its house purchase agreement in which payments are made by monthly installments and is calculated based on the income of the applicants.