MANILA, Philippines – The Subdivision and Housing Developers Association (SHDA) is working to meet the first milestone of the Housing Industry Roadmap, prioritizing the development of one million new homes by 2016.

SHDA, the country’s largest housing development association , said the past year had seen awareness rise on housing problems especially in the face of national calamities.

SHDA is focused on the national housing backlog currently estimated at 3.9 million units.  Without intervention, developers see the country overwhelmed with a 6.5 million housing backlog by 2030.

Newly inducted SHDA president Ricky Celis said the group remained committed to the thrusts of the Housing Industry Roadmap, prioritizing production, policy framework, affordability, financing and the legislative agenda.

“Increased housing production with government support will see us moving closer to our goals.  We’re looking forward to a year of increasing our multi-sectoral partnerships with other government offices, key shelter agencies, real estate groups and other corporate enterprises,” he said.

Under its production priorities, SHDA aims to increase and sustain production capacity to 12 percent growth per year.  This will mean moving to standardize costs of common items and supplier agreements.  SHDA will also look into using new building technology and systems to reduce construction time and cost.

In terms of improving housing affordability, SHDA is working closely with government to gain comprehensive and targeted government housing subsidy.  Its efforts include pushing for the accreditation of socialized low-rise buildings for informal settler families and supporting the inclusion of mass housing in this year’s Investment Priorities Plan.

Celis said SHDA would also seek nationwide engagement of its 200-strong members and chapters, and organize more chapters across the country.  “There are housing developers everywhere who share our vision of every Filipino family living with dignity in their own home, regardless of their economic status.  We provide the housing industry an opportunity to speak with one voice, to learn from each other and to work together towards that vision,” he added.

Another priority for the group has been the establishment of a databank of industry statistics and figures.  Government agencies and local government units have traditionally been the only resource for reliable housing industry figures.  SHDA aims to build an accurate and up-to-date databank from which housing developers can refer to in planning and developing areas.

Among its first reports to be released is on housing starts, or the estimated number of construction projects based on building permits.  SHDA is set to release its 2013 report on housing starts this quarter.