Financing Paralegal Titles in Rural India: The case of Swarna Pragati Housing Microfinance


This case study describes a unique product and operational mechanism of mainstream housing finance provision in an environment with absent or poor-quality home ownership titles.
By and  |  July 28, 2021

Despite high levels of home ownership, the lack of clear, individual and mortgageable titles has been a systemic barrier to housing finance, particularly in rural India. This case study provides a description of a paralegal title financing mechanism that a Housing Finance Company, Swarna Pragati Housing Microfinance (SPHM), employed between the period of 2009 and 2016, after which it was discontinued indefinitely. This case study describes a unique product and operational mechanism of mainstream housing finance provision in an environment with absent or poor-quality home ownership titles.

The SPHM model is one such attempt by the private sector to design and implement a co-operative process that involves various stakeholders, namely – financially excluded households, local self-governments, community based organizations, and the legal enforcement apparatus to help solve this widespread systemic issue. By highlighting this case study, the authors argue for the need for similar experiments dovetailed with regulatory and funding support in a market ecosystem that is working steadfastly towards ‘Housing for All’.

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About the Author(s):

Shilpa Rao

Shilpa Rao brings with her over a decade of experience in low-income housing and housing finance. She is currently a freelance consultant working on housing related projects with nonprofits, multilateral institutions and private sector clients across India and South Asia.

Ipshita Sinha

Ipshita Sinha is a young professional with a demonstrated expertise in public policy, particularly in labour market research and gender dimensions in developing countries.

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