Revising building codes to provide low-income housing

Revising housing infrastructure regulations in favour of the poor
Through the application of appropriate building regulations, an opportunity is created to promote the use of appropriate and low-cost building materials in shelter delivery. Regulations would be flexible, imposing restrictions over time, be advisory rather than compulsory. Traditional construction techniques would have a grace period in which to develop and to contribute to modern society building.
Regulatory instruments may prohibit the use of certain materials which are normally accessible to the low-income population and, thereby, limit the delivery of low-income shelter. The inadequacies of existing regulations have had negative effects on the provision of basic infrastructure to the low-income population. They stipulate standards which are far too costly for the target group and which, even if they were provided, could not be maintained with local resources and know-how.

Small construction firms, which build most residences in developing countries, are particularly affected by the restriction imposed by outdated building codes. In many countries, construction of low-cost housing is made illegal through building codes that forbid the use of low-cost materials. As banks and insurance companies do not approve loans for buildings constructed with these materials, low-income households which can only afford low-cost materials are excluded from housing loans.

For example, the use of soil in construction probably offers the best opportunity for most low-income settlements. However, to build a safe and durable house in soil requires some basic technical guidelines which can be provided through standards and specification and are permitted by building regulations.
Low-income families cannot afford imported standards for their self-built shelter.
Constrained by:
Abiding by housing codes
Type Classification:
G: Very Specific strategies
Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 8: Decent Work and Economic GrowthGOAL 9: Industry, Innovation and InfrastructureGOAL 10: Reduced InequalityGOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities