70,000 families to get low-cost houses in 2011

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Seventy thousand low-income households will receive low-cost houses this year as a series of projects are completed, says  Nguyen Tran Nam, deputy minister of Construction.

Nam said many low-cost house projects had begun construction since 2009 and new ones this year will provide homes to 70,000 families in the most difficult situations.

Nam said 37 such projects worth around VND3.6 trillion ($184.6 million) have been started across the country over more than a year, following some government decrees.

The projects, covering over 750,000 square meters, would house around 64,000 people.

Work on 1,653 houses were finished by the end of 2010 and 728 have been sold in Hanoi and Da Nang, he said.

The ministry has been cooperating with concerned ministries and agencies to mobilize more funds to develop low-cost housing projects.

Low-cost houses are aimed at helping low-income earners such as factory workers or public servants. Prices for these houses range between VND100 and 600 million (US$5,130-30,760).

Eligible candidates are families who have not received any prior housing support from the government, have contributed to the nation's freedom struggles, or those who have received titles as teachers or artists, according to the standards issued by Hanoi People's Committee in August last year.

The regulations also say that low-cost houses can only be sold to people who earn less than the average income threshold set by the capital city administration of VND3 million a month.

Each family can only apply for low-cost housing at one project at a time. If their application is returned because of a lack of houses at one project, they can apply at another.

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