Election 2014 - Party Policies - Housing

Election 2014 - Party Policies - Housing

This is where the parties stand on housing.


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  • ACT supports reform of the Resource Management and Local Government Acts, reinstating the rights of property owners to develop their land as they see fit.
  • Government policy should avoid ‘symptom-treating’ remedies such as subsidies to home buyers, taxes aimed at reducing demand, and greater direct government participation in the housing market. (more here)

  • Progressive Ownership uses the government's low cost of capital to create a pathway for home ownership for young families who have been increasingly locked out of home ownership.
  • Warrant of Fitness for rentals will ensure that all rental accommodation in New Zealand meets basic standards to make them healthy and safe for families to live in.
  • Secure tenancy will help families to longer term tenancy relationships. (more here)

  • Labour will oversee and invest in a large-scale 10 year programme of home building focussed on modest entry-level houses for sale to first home buyers. We will partner with the private sector, community agencies and local government to build these houses. This will create new jobs, 2,000 apprenticeships and give a $2 billion boost to the economy through KiwiBuild.
  • Our target is to ramp up to building 10,000 houses a year by the end of our first term (or as swiftly as the availability of skilled labour allows), and to continue at this level for around ten years. This will put 100,000 Kiwi families into their first home through KiwiBuild.
  • Most of the houses built over the first five years are likely to be in Auckland and Christchurch, while other places with high housing costs will receive the rest.
  • Introduce a capital gains tax to take pressure off house prices.
  • Introduce a National Policy Statement to ensure Councils are more likely to approve projects involving affordable housing. (more here)

  • Acknowledge the reality of homelessness in Aotearoa by making it a duty of Government to ensure every individual and family is housed, in secure, safe and affordable accommodation.
  • Build 20,000 more state houses within the next two years.  This will start to deal with the current crisis in housing availability for low income people, and will also create jobs and training opportunities
  • Introduce a ‘warrant of fitness’ for all rental housing, to ensure no accommodation is let without basic standards being met, including sanitation, insulation, warmth, fire safety and the removal of any toxic materials.
  • Maintain income related rents at no more than 25% of income for state, local government and community and iwi social housing.
  • Provide adequate ongoing funding for emergency housing, women’s refuges and supported housing for those with particular health and social needs – in every district.  Increase funding and other support for tenants’ protection groups. (more here)

  • Devolve state housing to Māori and Pasifika community groups for whānau to purchase their own homes, including a rent-to-own scheme.
  • Assessments for housing need of rentals undertaken by Housing NZ to be inclusive of whānau, e.g. accounting for health, social, cultural and economic wellbeing.
  • We will promote the Lifemark design as a quality standard to ensure houses are accessible, usable and easy to adapt as people’s needs change over time.
  • Direct the Social Housing Unit to respond to the Auditor General’s report into better utilisation of Māori land to support whānau initiatives into housing; including building on Māori land in multiple ownership.
  • We will better match support available including a review of Kāinga Whenua loans and Māori Demonstration Partnership funds, to assist more Māori into affordable housing on their own land. (more here)

  • Free up land for new sections.
  • Make the construction sector more productive by expanding the Apprenticeship Reboot to a total of 20,000 places and reducing compliance costs.
  • Keep helping families into their first home with increased access to the KiwiSaver First Home Deposit Subsidy and Welcome Home Loans, announced last year.
  • Reduce building costs by $3,500 on average by suspending duties and tariffs on building products.
  • Rein in council development charges – these had trebled over the past decade and National is restricting what councils can charge on new sections and developments. (more here)

  • Establish a new state agency to acquire land where Special Housing Areas have been designated under the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act 2013, for sustainable residential development.
  • Sell residential sections under long term agreements for sale and purchase (up to 25 years) to first home buyers, on a cost recovery basis, so that first home buyers will have access to sections which are affordable, reducing the overall initial capital cost of a new home by about one-third.
  • Require better building quality, and sustainable housing objectives Including leak proofing, insulation, and earthquake and landslip resistance.
  • All homes to be compulsorily insured including full earthquake, landslide, flooding and other disaster cover, and a minimum of full indemnity insurance. Home owners will be able to choose between a state insurance provider to be established, or a private insurer.
  • Non-residents who are not New Zealand citizens would be ineligible for home ownership except if a genuine need to do so can be demonstrated. (more here)

  • Encourage home ownership by allowing families to capitalise their Working For Families entitlements for a year as a lump sum to help purchase their first home, extend existing homes, or increase equity in a home.
  • Investigate alternative local body funding arrangements with the aim of abolishing rates on domestic and commercial properties.
  • Continue to sell state houses with very high valuations (some are over $1million), or those properties that are not configured for those who need them (e.g. too few or too many bedrooms), and use the proceeds to purchase other properties for use as state houses.
  • Work in partnership with iwi to develop former Crown land, including land returned through Treaty settlements, for housing.
  • Review Housing NZ tenancies on an annual basis to ensure that the occupants still meet the criteria and to ensure that housing stock is fairly allocated, and encourage long-term tenants into home ownership (either on the private market or rent-to-buy their state house. (more here)

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

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