FCB director Ben Oleana urges to implement Housing Ordinance

KRALENDIJK- The director of the foundation for social housing on Bonaire, the Fundashon Cas Boneriano (FCB) urges the Executive Council to consider introducing a Housing Ordinance.

The introduction of such a regulation should not only help reduce the housing shortage, but also stop the explosive growth of house prices on the island.

“Recently, it has become apparent that there is a scarcity of affordable housing for the residents of Bonaire. FCB would like to bring this to your attention by means of this letter and at the same time make a proposal for the inventory and concretization of possible solutions, so that they can be submitted to the Island Council and the Executive Council,” according to Oleana in his letter.

Oleana also writes that the current housing shortage and the strong growth of the population will put pressure on nature to make way for new homes. “In FCB’s opinion, this is an undesirable development, as nature is the only ‘wealth’ that Bonaire has, is the basis of our tourist economy and distinguishes us from other islands. In short, without nature there would be no tourists”, says Oleana


Oleana also notes that the scarcity of affordable housing affects the current residents of Bonaire the most. As a result of this scarcity, these are ‘displaced’ from the housing market by persons or investors who often do not live on Bonaire and who buy the houses on Bonaire with usually the purpose of (recreational) rental. The purchase is seen as a good investment with a good return, because the money in the bank yields no or negative interest.

“As a result, these homes ‘disappear’ from the ‘normal’ housing market. The prices of owner-occupied homes were pushed up in this way and are and are therefore for many Bonaireans

unattainable with an average income”, says the FCB director.


Oleana argues in his letter to the BC that it is desirable to draw up a Housing Ordinance which, among other things, regulates that a housing permit is required for occupancy of owner-occupied homes up to a certain purchase price and rental properties up to a specific rent. “This prevents scarce homes from being used as investment objects and contributes to ensuring that scarce homes become and remain available to meet the need for affordable housing on Bonaire.”

Incidentally, as Oleana also notes, the need to draw up a Housing Regulation is not new. During the process of drafting new legislation and regulations regarding the (rental) housing market in the Caribbean Netherlands, a draft housing regulation was already drawn up. This lays the foundation for the introduction of a permit system for rental and owner-occupied homes. The draft Housing Regulation is now somewhat outdated and must be adapted to current developments and needs.

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