After the uproar over the changes to the Mi Casa Ya program and the requests from the construction sector, the Minister of Housing, Catalina Velasco, in an interview with Portafolio, responded that the program’s resources are limited and that, furthermore, the changes will guarantee delivery.
In addition, he said that targeting with Sisbén IV is not a barrier, since it even covers households with up to 4 minimum wages.
What is the plan for the Mi Casa Ya subsidies? Some would be missing despite the budget addition.
With the billion pesos that was added to the budget of this ministry, 75,000 subsidies will be guaranteed to meet the objectives set for this year.
(First semester, with marked symptoms of deceleration).
We went from an average rate of 33,000 subsidies between 2018 and 2020, to 50,000 that will be guaranteed annually between 2023 and 2026. The situation has been overcome and the trend is improving.
The missionary objective of the Ministry of Housing, City and Territory will always be to provide a decent housing solution to more and more Colombians, this objective must be aligned with the macroeconomic and fiscal reality of the country.
Have you reviewed Camacol’s proposals to reactivate the sector?
We share the interest of builders to continue maintaining Mi Casa Ya as one of the protagonists of housing policy and as a promoter of the building sector.
(The Lula government has completed six months marked by tensions with the opposition).
However, the Government must seek the best use of available resources, which are not unlimited, and which must be prioritized to benefit the most vulnerable households.
The objective of Mi Casa Ya has never been to cover the entire VIS housing offer on the market, but to provide support for the acquisition of the most vulnerable households, and that is what is sought through the necessary adjustments.
When this government received the program, what it found was a huge gap between market expectations and the availability of resources.
(The benefit that Colpensiones will maintain, even with the pension reform).
For this reason, firstly, budgetary efforts were made to ensure 50,000 subsidies a year and, secondly, adjustments were made to better target these subsidies towards households and municipalities with the greatest needs.
What do you think about the controversy of incorporating Sisbén in the transition of households that are already waiting for relief?
The transition towards targeting based on Sisbén IV does not increase the application procedures and accesses the benefits of the Mi Casa Ya program.
(‘We want to show the human side of the sector’: Amarilo).
This process is carried out with the purpose of better identifying the needs of the stakeholders and ensuring that the subsidies benefit a greater number of vulnerable households.
At the end of 2022, Sisbén IV had coverage of close to 60% of the population and 70% of Colombian households, which shows that it does not constitute a barrier.
In addition, the National Government is making great efforts to facilitate the process in all regions of the country.
What will happen to those who don’t get their qualifying subsidy?
One of the requirements to be a beneficiary is to have a classification between A1 and D20. In this mechanism, households with monthly income of up to 4 Minimum Wages could be beneficiaries.
(Negative perception of President Petro’s management reached 61%).
However, in view of the prioritization criteria, these were implemented in order to identify the households with the greatest needs and levels of vulnerability, as well as to boost the offer in territories previously excluded from the program.
Finally, taking into account that there are households that meet the new requirements of the program and have an advanced home purchase process, the demand of those families who plan to sign deeds within six months after the issuance of the certificate is being prioritized. Decree.
(Small builders, with ‘cracked’ finances due to low sales).
This allows the stock of finished homes to be reduced and avoids withdrawals.
What will they do with the construction MSMEs that are not receiving the resources of Mi Casa Ya since 2022?
Within the adjustments made to Mi Casa Ya, the visualization of a higher prioritization score was seen for applicants in category 5 and 6 municipalities (up to 20 points), this in order to ensure that the program reaches municipalities that have been neglected. .
(The Government trusts in a prompt relief of the real estate market).
With the growing demand and the request for subsidies in the smallest municipalities, it is expected to encourage the supply of VIS housing in these areas of the country.
The disbursements have been carried out normally since February, so the subsidies are disbursed as the builders make the request for payment.
With this context, will housing stop being an engine that boosts GDP?
Although the construction of buildings is not the main generator of added value in the country, it has a participation of 2% in the GDP and ranks as the 15th activity among the 61 that contributes the most to the economy. The construction of buildings is characterized for being a fundamental activity in terms of economic dynamism and job creation. This is not going to change.
(The brake on home sales infects other links).
As the Ministry of Housing, we consider that the impacts of this macroeconomic situation, both in prices and in the behavior of the sector, will remain controlled.
The normalization of the intervention rates of the monetary policy together with the commitment of the financial sector, added to the guarantee of subsidies from Mi Casa Ya will become a greater confidence of households.
PAULA GALEANO BALAGUERA