The rapid urbanization of developing countries in the 20th century resulted in the formation of informal settlements that persist despite government efforts. The idea of self-help proposes the incremental improvement of housing – made by families and communities – as the solution to the low quality of housing in informal settlements. This paper examines the effect of the urban structure in the capacity of neighborhoods to consolidate. To achieve this, panel data and a spatial model are used together with explanatory variables used in academic literature and a novel variable proposed by space syntax. The results indicate that higher levels in quality of housing result from a higher level of internal street integration and gentler slopes.