Affordable Green Homes

Emerging market cities will add hundreds of millions of homes in the coming decades. It’s already happening, and we have a one-time opportunity to lock in the clean and green to focus the building boom on affordable green homes. That’s the key to sustainable cities that will protect the climate instead of destroying it. In the affordable market, the homes that are being built are anything but green. That’s because people don’t understand the benefits and they overestimate the costs. This translates into low demand, and therefore low supply. We have to create a market for affordable green homes, and to do that, we need large scale demonstration projects to prove the benefits and market them widely, thereby creating demand. International Housing Solutions is a housing investment fund manager that has already built thousands of homes in Africa. In its current fund, IHS is building affordable green homes with investments by the IFC and KfW. We need to raise a further $100m to multiply the number of affordable green homes we can deliver and catalyze the market.

Cathal Conaty

Managing Director International Housing Solutions

Key metrics

Metrics Value
Green homes being delivered Current target 5,060, aims to at least double
Minimum energy and water usage savings 20%
Target return to fund investors 20%

Opportunities for involvement

  • IHS Fund II is open to investment by qualified investors.
  • Participate by introducing us to potential investors.
"Hundreds of millions of homes will be built in cities in the coming decades. This idea is a simple and effective way to make sure those homes help protect the climate."
- The FiRe Team


  • Sector: Energy efficient housing
  • Geography: South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa

Action plan

  • April 2016: FiRe review of business case.
  • May 2016: Outreach to investors.
  • July 2016: Raise capital.
  • August 2016: First green homes delivered in South Africa.

Main barriers

  • Limited demand due to unclear benefits and perception of high costs.
  • Private finance is waiting until demand is proven.
  • Catalytic and commercial investors haven’t joined forces.
  • No large-scale demonstration projects.