More than 90% of eligible home-buyers enter discounted housing lottery

By
July 10, 2017 20:16

Housing lottery draws 41,856 households who have signed up for the chance to buy some 15,000 apartments in 24 Israeli cities at significantly discounted prices.

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A laborer works on an apartment building under construction in the Har Homa neighborhood of Jerusale

A laborer works on an apartment building under construction in the Har Homa neighborhood of Jerusalem. (photo credit:REUTERS)

With hopes of purchasing an affordable home in Israel’s formidably priced housing sector, more than 90% of those eligible have registered for the latest government-backed apartment purchase lottery.

As the latest round in the Finance Ministry’s “price for occupants” lottery drew to a close late Sunday night, 41,856 households had signed up for the chance to buy some 15,000 apartments in 24 Israeli cities at significantly discounted, fixed prices. The winners of the lottery will receive notification on August 14. Another round of 15,000 additional apartments is slated to kick off in October, according to the ministry.

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“Young couples have proved that they are the strongest pressure group in the State of Israel,” said Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon. “We will not stop, and we will flood the market with tens of thousands of cheap apartments all over the country. The confidence of young couples in the program warms the heart.”

Each eligible household was able to simultaneously register for up to three of the 24 cities on the list. The municipalities that drew the largest number of lottery applicants were Rishon Lezion (13,163), Herzliya (11,692), Modi’in (11,515), Beit Shemesh (11,063) and Yavne (8,088), the Finance Ministry reported. However, the city with the highest likelihood of winning was Tirat Carmel, located just south of Haifa.

Those eligible to participate in the apartment lotteries include married or common- law couples of any age, individuals over 35 years of age and single parents with at least one child under the age of 21. Disabled individuals age 21 and over are also qualified to apply. Under terms of program, those who want to purchase an apartment in a city on the list where they have lived for the past three years, or for four out of the past 10 years, are given priority.

Applicants must not have owned any part of an apartment for the past six years or rented an apartment that was under the Tenant Protection Law for that same amount of time, the guidelines say. In addition, lottery entrants cannot hold rights to an apartment under construction or be defined as an heir to housing units on estates, farming communities or community settlements.

Prior to the latest lottery, approximately 10,000 eligible households had won the rights to purchase an apartment, the Finance Ministry said.

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