MANILA, Philippines - Despite the rising number of houses being built in the country, the housing sector still has a "long way" to go before eliminating the national housing backlog.
The Subdivision and Housing Developers Association, Inc. (SHDA) has reported a 17.3% or 30,870 increase in the number of housing units in 2012.
Based on raw data from the National Statistics Office, the report noted housing units rose to 211,009 in 2012 from 180,140 the previous year.
The report added that the nationwide value of houses jumped 20%, to P120.37 billion in 2012 from P100.22 billion a year earlier.
“While our economy is growing at an average of 6-7% annually, the growth of housing is almost three times that, indicative of the significant multiplier effect our sector has on the economy,” said SHDA president Paul Tanchi.
Condominium developments led the rise with a 36.75% increase or 18,568 more units than in 2011. Construction of apartments also went up by 24.34%.
The number of single detached units decreased from 40% to 36% but remained to have the most number of units built.
But despite the generally positive numbers, the national housing backlog remained at 3.9 million units.
According to Tanchi, numerous "roadblocks" like the uncertainty revolving the tax holidays for mass housing projects, the inaccessibility and inadequacy of government housing funds and varying land policies, contributed to a uphill battle for the sector.
“All these roadblocks add to cost and drag in housing production which ultimately translates to higher selling prices. The housing starts, although passable, would certainly be better if these roadblocks were finally addressed. Only then will we see significant reductions in the housing backlog,” Tanchi said.