Families who have a plot of land but could not afford to build a house can have the opportunity to own one through a special scheme under Sabah Chartered Volunteer Society (SCVS) and an NGO, Happy Family Home Malaysia (HFHM).
SCVS Chairman, Prof Dr Benjamin Yapp said SCVS is working with HFHM to build affordable homes for less fortunate families in Kota Kinabalu suburbs.
He said families with children and income of over RM1,000 may be qualified to apply for the scheme to SCVS and HFHM.
"The affordable community housing scheme is available for poor families at an average price of between RM25,000 and RM35,000 per unit with two rooms, a living space, a kitchen and toilet facilities through an easy payment scheme without interest based on the rent-to-own concept.
"Many families are renting a room or house for between RM300 and RM600 per month. Instead of paying a monthly rental, just for between RM350 and RM400 a month, a family is able to own a house within seven or eight years without having to pay interest," he said.
Repayment is flexible and no bank loan is required. The administration is done by HFHM without extra charge, he added.
Explaining the affordable housing, Dr Benjamin said most of the labour works are done by volunteers without pay while the materials are sourced at competitive prices and from generous donors.
He said HFHM has been building affordable homes for the poor since a few years ago and so far, 80 community homes have been built.
Encouraging those interested to apply, Dr Benjamin said any enquiry can be channelled to his email at firstname.lastname@example.org
He said according to a recent survey conducted by SCVS, many people especially those with families in Sabah are without a decent home. "The survey also found that many households with children are below the poverty level, earning barely enough to make ends meet.
"They complain about the rise in the prices of fuel, food and essential commodities, particularly the Goods and Sales Tax (GST)," he said.
As a result, Dr Benjamin said many urban families are resorting to renting a room or house while the rural poor are living in dilapidated homes and have to put up with lack of clean water supply or electricity and in some remote areas, without water and electricity.
"To own a decent home for thousands of poor families is near impossible with the soaring prices and expensive building materials and labour charges, coupled with GST on goods and services," he said.