Affordable Housing

Four billion people around the world do not have access to decent housing, including 150 million in developed countries, and over 800 million live in slums. To address this need, LafargeHolcim is focusing on innovation to offer a range of affordable housing solutions to populations and governments, including microfinance, earth-cement building solutions, slum renovation and collective social housing.


For LafargeHolcim, affordable housing means helping populations with low revenue access housing at the most affordable cost. Affordable housing is a business activity with a high social impact. In 2015, we have impacted 440,000 people and are aiming to increase this number up to 25 million by 2030. We are committed to delivering these solutions profitably: in 2015 this segment has contributed 15 million CHF EBITDA to LafargeHolcim.

We offer a wide range of innovative solutions for the construction, renovation and extension of affordable houses, tailored to the local challenges and needs of individuals, NGOs, and public organizations responsible for housing. They cover four types of offers that are implemented in 25 countries worldwide to facilitate access to decent housing.



Microfinance and construction technical assistance for IHBs/self-builders

  • The challenge: enabling individuals with low revenue to finance the construction, renovation, and extension of their homes.
  • Our response: we offer our microfinance program for affordable housing, including:
    • Access to microcredits via our partnerships with specialist institutions such as the French Development Agency (AFD) or International Finance Corporation (IFC, a part of the World Bank Group). 
    • Technical assistance through support from dedicated LafargeHolcim advisors, worksite visits, introduction to trained masons, plans and budgets, catalogs, free training in the use of our LafargeHolcim solutions, and mobile apps for tablets to facilitate advisors' day-to-day work. 
    • Access to our network of partner retailers, through which customers have access to high quality materials and innovative building items. 
    • Construction solutions: modular housing templates for bit-by-bit construction, a concrete blocks range, and roofing solutions.

This solution is available in Nigeria, Zambia, South Africa, Kenya, Ecuador, Brazil and Serbia.


Earth-cement building solutions

  • The challenge: constructing sustainable housing by offering an alternative solution to burnt clay bricks.
  • Our response: our R&D teams have developed DURABRIC, a LafargeHolcim cement binder mixed with earth. This allows easy local construction of stabilized blocks, which are more weather-resistant than traditional clay bricks. It is also more environmentally friendly, because it does not require firing, which is the source of significant deforestation in many countries.

LafargeHolcim DURABRIC also contributes to homes' insulation by preserving their thermal inertia. This produces affordable, comfortable, and attractive housing.

This solution is available in Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Cameroon, and Zambia.


Distribution solutions for slum and rural areas

  • The challenge: accessing high-quality and affordable construction materials in informal settlements and rural areas.
  • Our response
    • In rural and semi-rural areas of India, we are setting up “Green Building Centers” through partner entrepreneurs who produce and sell a complete building solution including low-carbon fly ash bricks and other cement-based materials
    • In the slums of India, LafargeHolcim supplies retarded concrete and mortar in bags and small packages that can be transported by rickshaws.

Discover the ACC Green Building Centre, India

ACC's Green Building Centre Initiative brings durable and affordable housing options to communities in India.
Affordabe housing, collective social housing

Solutions for collective social housing

  • The challenge: governments and developers are looking for new solutions to build large collective housing schemes faster and improve their quality, attractiveness, and sustainability. 
  • Our response: we offer NGOs and governments in mature and emerging countries packages including:
    • Preliminary studies with designers and decision-makers to identify and test optimized construction systems in collaboration with our LafargeHolcim Research Center and local laboratories.
    • Our ready-mix concrete solutions, including the on-site delivery of innovative concrete walls.

This solution is primarily available in Nigeria.


Our acceleration lever: 14 Trees

To scale up our impact on Affordable Housing across developing countries, LafargeHolcim and CDC, the UK’s Development Finance Institution owned by DfID, established a joint-venture company called 14 Trees.

14 Trees will focus on the production and promotion of DURABRIC, our affordable, low-carbon construction solution, to various developing countries affected by deforestation resulting from the use of wood-fired bricks. Through DURABRIC, 14Trees will build better lives.


Discover our partners

Delivering affordable housing requires developing and strengthening the ecosystem. We are working on this through a consortium of global and regional partners:


Join our affordable housing solutions communities

You are an individual home builder, government body, NGO, entrepreneur, academic, or ….? Whatever your current or future involvement in affordable housing, we are always interested in what you have to say!

Join our collaborative platforms: