ANALYSIS OF HOUSING DEMAND IN ENUGU METROPOLIS, ENUGU STATE, NIGERIA.
This study was aimed at empirically identifying the determinants of housing demand in Enugu metropolis. To this end, the objectives of the study were to: (i) examine the trend of housing demand in Enugu Metropolis, (ii) identify factors that influence housing demand (determinants) in Enugu metropolis, (iii) determine whether there is variation in housing demand among various income groups (high, medium and low) in Enugu metropolis and (iv) identify residents’ perception of the housing demand. Survey design method was adopted for this study. Data used in this study was collected from both secondary and primary sources. Secondary data were obtained from published materials on housing demand and its determinants. The primary data on the residents’ perception of the nature of housing demand was collected with the aid of structured questionnaire, which contained 2 major sections and 53 questions. The questionnaire was validated by two environmental professionals. The questions were structured using 5-point Likert scale. Reliability of the test instrument was determined using Cronbach’s Alpha, which yielded a correlation coefficient of 0.83. The pilot survey was carried out to test the clarity of the questions on the questionnaire. The study covered a time period of 34 years (1980 – 2013). The sample size of 460 respondents was determined from the sample frame of 928,127 (the projected city’s population) using William’s formula representing 0.05% of the population. The stratified sampling technique was employed in selecting 460 respondents. However, 429 questionnaires were duly completed and retrieved reflecting 93.3% return rate. Three statistical techniques used in this study were analysis of variance (ANOrVA), Multi-linear Regression and Chi square at 0.05 significant level. The trend of housing demand differed significantly over the years (p < 0.05) in Enugu metropolis. The housing demand was highest (172,844 housing units per annum) during the third (2000-2013) decade and it was followed in descending order by second (1990-1999) and first (1980-1989) decades with housing demand of 123,713 and 93,841 housing units per annum respectively. There was a significant relationship (p < 0.05) between housing demand and the determinant factors (Population growth, Income, Institutions, Public utilities, Security and Household size). This implies that the six identified afore-mentioned factors are the determinants of housing demand in Enugu metropolis. Housing demand differed significantly (p < 0.05) among various income groups (high, medium and low) in Enugu metropolis. The low-income group has the highest housing demand (88,406 housing units per annum) and it was followed in descending order by medium – income (31,835 housing units per annum) and high-income (14,917 housing units per annum) groups. There was a significant difference (p < 0.05) in residents’ perception of the housing demand in Enugu metropolis. The study recommends among other things the inculcation of the identified factors in determining housing demand in Nigeria.