CONGRATS Portugal for the success of the summit in Porto! It was great to choose another city than the capital, and to value the whole country. Then, by focusing on the social, where the EU has to learn from Minister Ana Godinho! PM Costa said what many think, great! Let’s do it! But there are many powerful fellows who will do anything to prevent weakening their strength.
SIMPLE HOUSING: Denmark started some 40 years ago with home for university students and recent graduates. They changed the law that rules size and finish in those flats. It was financed at low interest rates by the official bank, only to those under the age of 30. It was required in buildings with more than eight flats, in general one mini for every 4/5 dwellings. Brazil created something similar in the 1970s. And it returned to this plan in 2012.
The municipality almost always offers the land and selects those who will be able to buy / live there. The young owner cannot sell it until 7/8 years later, to avoid real estate speculation. Almost always the other flats in that building are also simple, but often normal construction.
PREFAB WOODEN HOMES: There have been wooden homes for millennia. After 2nd WW, to speed up housing for those who lost them, hundreds of plants of prefabricated houses appeared. Its technology developed in the 60ies, when millions of families left agriculture for industries in cities. Now it has two floors. With lots of 6m wide, semi-detached or detached houses, they require only one concrete plate on the ground floor with water, sewage and energy pipes. A house 66 to 120m², this latter on a larger plot, is assembled in a few days.
In countries with plenty of wood, such as in Northern Europe, half of all flats are prefab in wood. Also in southern South America. Groups of friends and family, under the guidance of a master, sometimes assemble it in one weekend.
MOBILE WOODEN HOMES: There have been mobile homes for a century. Nowadays you buy a good one, second-hand, for some €10k. With heat insulation a two-bed unit, 60m² costs some €12k. Good for all, but the construction cartel stopped it. Municipalities should allow them for families with no kids, youngsters and oldies, for some six years or so, in both suburban and rural areas.
COSTA: HOMES FOR ALL!
By Jack Soifer