Tsumeb Housing, Rental Prices Expected to Drop

Housing and rental prices in Tsumeb are expected to drop in the coming months, as contracts for companies sub-contracted by the Tsumeb Smelter for the construction of the N$3 billion acid plant come to an end in June this year.

In recent months, housing and rental prices have soared due to high demand from contract workers that come from as far as South Africa and India. Companies that are sub-contracted by the Tsumeb smelter are renting most of the flats and houses in Tsumeb at exorbitant amounts. This has in turn pushed up rental prices for locals.

Some one-bedroomed apartments are rented out for as much as N$5 000, with some estate agents claiming that there are many foreign workers who can afford it and it is a good time for their property business to flourish.

Houses are rented out for as much as N$20 000 per month in areas close to the central business district with others priced even higher in the affluent areas of the town.

One Estate agent, who requested anonymity, said while they are making good money during this time, homeowners too are leasing their homes, as the contracted companies offer big money even promising to leave the places furnished, as they return to their countries.

“Yes, the prices are high but while we can make extra money why not, the locals will have to wait.”

A local resident from Tsumeb, Lucas Victor, expressed dissatisfaction with individuals who are making big money at the expense of the needy.

“Many people need an affordable place to stay, but it is just impossible in Tsumeb. Even those that get good salaries simply cannot afford to rent,” he said.

Public Relations Officer at the Tsumeb Municipality, Stella Imalwa, said although there is very little the local authority can do to regulate the housing and rental prices, residential land has been allocated whereabout 300 houses are expected to be built in the very near future.

She also confirmed that the municipality submitted an application to the Ministry of Regional and Local Government, Housing and Rural Development for a mass housing project, for which they have not received an answer yet.

“Things will go better once the contracts end at the mines. However, provision has been made to further develop land for residential purposes,” she said

Jim Castellic, senior spokesperson at the Dundee Precious Metals Tsumeb, was unavailable to comment despite numerous phone calls.

Source : New Era