As the Ministry of Housing and Lands strives to meet housing demand, persons residing in tenantries across Barbados are reminded that they can still apply to purchase the land they are living on, at significantly low prices.
In a recent interview, Chief Housing Planner at the Ministry of Housing and Lands, Pat Barrow, explained that the scheme was still a very attractive option for qualified tenants residing in plantation and rural tenantries to qualify to purchase land.?? The purchase price for lots in plantation tenantries is $1.00 per square metre or 10 cents per square foot and the minimum purchase price that can be paid is $300.00.??
"So long as there are more than five persons renting land from the same landlord and you have been renting for a minimum of 5 years, you qualify.?? In the situation where it is not a tenantry, where you do not have six or more houses but there are only two to five, we look at your status from February 1, 1990.??
"Again, you would have had to be renting the land at least five years before that date, and have done substantial improvements including installing water-borne toilet facilities or you would have had to notify your landlord by a Form 1 Notice.?? In addition, your landlord would have to be willing to sell, or at February 1, 1990 or you should have been renting for 20 more years before that date, to qualify," Ms. Barrow pointed out.??
Some 6000 persons have already benefitted from over 330 scheduled tenantries and Ms. Barrow is urging others who qualify to "take advantage of the scheme".
She said: "It helps them in home improvement, it gives them security and they do not have to be concerned that sometime in the future that they will be given notice to move off the land. If they have been living on the land for so many years and like the area they should exercise their right. Persons interested in purchasing the tenantry land, which they are renting, should visit the Ministry or call the Housing Planning Unit at 467-7830."
Although the legislation defines a tenantry as an area that is subdivided into six or more lots, comprising six or more persons, other than the landlord and his or her family, there are provisions for other cases.??
With respect to non-plantation tenantries, that is, those that are not owned by Government or a plantation, the tenant will pay $2.50 per square foot for the first 5,000 square feet and then he/she is required to pay market price on the excess.??
Persons living in these tenantry areas are further reminded by Acting Registrar of Titles, Samantha Cummins, that a tenant can, with the backing of the Act, still purchase the lot if the landlord either cannot be found, refuses to sell or has not appointed an attorney.
Ms. Cummins explained:?? "In this case the tenant will submit a Form II Notice to the Registrar of Titles at the Land Registry Department in the Warrens Office Complex to notify the Registrar to act on the tenants behalf and convey the lot to them.?? And, they do not have to wait until the landlord surveys the land and notifies them of their lot number."??
The onus is on the tenant so long as they qualify, to notify their landlord of their willingness to purchase the land under the Tenantry Freehold Purchase Act.??