Little says 50% of 100,000 Kiwibuild houses would be in Auckland; apartments priced under NZ$500,000; Labour plans Affordable Housing UDA to fast-track city developments; Labour would extend 2 year bright line test to 5 years

Little says 50% of 100,000 Kiwibuild houses would be in Auckland; apartments priced under NZ$500,000; Labour plans Affordable Housing UDA to fast-track city developments; Labour would extend 2 year bright line test to 5 years
A hoarding advertising a new apartment block in Eden Terrace in Auckland on July 8, 2016. Photo by Bernard Hickey for Hive News.

By Bernard Hickey

Labour Leader Andrew Little has announced the final part of the party's housing policy for the election next year, including a pledge to build and sell 50,000 affordable houses in Auckland over 10 years, to create a new Affordable Housing Urban Development Authority (UDA) to fast-track developments in cities, and to extend the current 2 year bright line test for taxing speculative capital gains to five years.

“The housing crisis is out of control and National has proven it is incapable of fixing it. Home ownership is at its lowest level in 65 years and we have a government in denial," Little said in a speech at a New Lynn Community Centre.

Little said the 50,000 houses would be part of Labour's existing 100,000 Kiwibuild policy and that it planned for stand-alone houses to cost NZ$500,000 to NZ$600,000 in Auckland, with apartments and townhouses in Auckland costing less than NZ$500,000. Houses built under Kiwibuild outside of Auckland would cost NZ$300,000 to NZ$500,000.

A Labour Government would borrow NZ$2 billion to kick-start the Kiwibuild programme, whereby the Government would contract the private sector to build the homes, often using off-site manufacturing at scale, before they were sold to first home buyers. Little said the 5,000 houses built per year in Auckland under the programme represented a ten-fold increase from the current 500 affordable houses being built each year in Auckland.

A Labour Government would also turn Housing New Zealand Corp into a ministry that did not pay dividends and instead used the funds to build a net new 1,000 houses per year. It also planned to spend NZ$60 million over four years to fund Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) to pay for the provision of an extra 1,400 beds to house 5,100 homeless people a year.

Labour would spend NZ$100 million to create a new Affordable Housing Authority with the powers of an Urban Development Authority and the aim of fast-tracking the planning and creation of large-scale housing developments.

“Labour’s Affordable Housing Authority will have two chief functions – acquire land for housing, including Crown land, and partner with the private sector, councils and iwi to create housing developments with an average of 50 per cent KiwiBuild affordable homes," Little said.

“The Authority will use the best of public and private sector expertise to work with developers to cut through the red tape, with fast-tracked consenting so it can get on with building the houses we need. The houses will be in great communities, with modern design and infrastructure as well as parks, shopping centres and transport links," he said.

"Labour will build large numbers of affordable homes for first home buyers. National can’t and won’t get them built."

"Likely areas for development in Auckland include Crown land sites, brownfield development sites throughout the city, and greenfield growth areas such as Whenuapai, Drury, and Kumeu. Revitalisation projects outside Auckland could include places like South Dunedin and the East Frame in Christchurch," Labour said in a fact sheet released with the policy.

"An initial establishment fund of $100m will be allocated to the Affordable Housing Authority. It will be expected to finance itself from its own activities from then on. The Affordable Housing Authority will be a Crown Entity, like NZTA, and will not pay a dividend to the Crown."

Labour said the Affordable Housing Authority would drive the delivery of Labour’s KiwiBuild programme by supplying the land, consenting, and infrastructure.

"A typical Affordable Housing Authority project will be around 50% KiwiBuild houses and 50% private developments," it said.

Labour also repeated its policy of removing metropolitan urban limits, freeing up density controls and banning non-residents from buying existing homes.

Reaction

Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce questioned whether a Labour Government could successfully recycle the NZ$2 billion of capital to produce 100,000 houses.

“However they would have to recycle the money 25 times in ten years to achieve their target. That is simply fanciful. They would have to buy the land, get the consents, build the infrastructure, design 4,000 houses, build 4,000 houses, and sell 4,000 houses all in five months. Not just once but 25 times," Joyce said.

 

“Tell ‘em they’re dreaming. Setting aside the fudging of their numbers, Labour would also be caught by the same planning and infrastructure delays affecting all developers – that’s what the Government is focused on fixing," he said.

“The Government’s comprehensive housing plan is building 85,000 houses over this term of Parliament by harnessing the combined strength of the public and private sectors. That includes having Housing New Zealand spending $2 billion to build and purchase around 4,000 homes over the next three years. The only difference is we don’t have Labour’s magic pixie dust to turn 4,000 houses into 100,000 houses. Sadly for them, I don’t think they have either."

Property Institute CEO Ashley Church welcomed the policy's involvement of the private sector.

“Labour appear to have recognised that the most effective way to deal with the housing crisis is to work cooperatively with private developers and Mums and Dads to build as many homes as quickly as possible," Church said.

"That’s not just a good idea – it’s also the only practical way to start turning the tide on runaway house price inflation. The policy is also notable for the near absence of measures designed to punish homeowners and property investors. The focus on positive initiatives to grow the housing stock – rather than pointless nanny-state measures which punish success – is probably one of the most unexpected and constructive features of this policy," he said, adding he welcomed the absence of a Capital Gains Tax.

Church said the Institute favoured having several competing Crown or Council owned UDAs rather than just one.

"However, given that we had already flagged the idea that one of these companies should be tasked with focusing on affordable housing – we broadly support the proposal as outlined by Labour."

He doubted the price points for affordable housing were achieveable though without heavy subsidisation, given land prices were already over NZ$500,000 per section.

(Updated with comments from Steven Joyce)

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12
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Great stuff, Labour has my vote.

Enough to make a difference and differentiate from National but not so extreme they will lose votes like they did with the CGT policy.

10
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CGT really bugged me. They lost an election primarily over something that is so obviously needed to be talked about and has been effectively bought in by national. Voters are a bunch of numb nuts as are mainstream media.

Oh sure and when the whole thing doesn't happen, then what ? Great idea to swing them votes but you know its not actually going to happen right ? Then what ?

at the moment we have no plan from one side and a promise of a plan from the other,
of course i dont expect them to achieve anywhere near what they are hoping but it is a start and that is better than nothing.
either way i wont vote for either as neither will address the elephant in the room High Immigration

Finding enough experienced tradesmen in an already stretched industry is going to be a major hurdle, especially in the short to medium term.

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Errr... you mean the cowboys that pass themselves off as builders.

A great idea has been mooted and already you are being negative and insulting hardworking NZers.

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Then you haven't been keeping up with poor building work being done in Christchurch - how many second or third time attempts at repairs.....

Kettle pot black.

Could still work if the Govt honours the MB guarantees for the first 10 years....

There's a large cohort of Filipino builders in the south.

don't they do pretty well with bamboo?

what is useful in the policy is that it places an emphasis on off-site construction. I think a fundamental problem is that we have lost the art of building cheaply. Current legislation makes this difficult but an emphasis on factory built would improve this. It is an important component of a necessary step-change in housing supply.

what is useful in the policy is that it places an emphasis on off-site construction. I think a fundamental problem is that we have lost the art of building cheaply. Current legislation makes this difficult but an emphasis on factory built would improve this. It is an important component of a necessary step-change in housing supply.

Not quite enough without details on how to identify overseas ownership. However this can be done at implementation including the weeding out of those already sitting on empty properties.
There needs to be more and the comment about investors in competition with home owners needs much more juice. The comment in his speech refers to speculators being able to make tax claims while home owners cannot. To me there is little difference in that respect between speculators and investors advantages and thus the tax advantage should be quashed for all investors whatever their motive for investing.

And I want to see what they are going to do for those who still can't buy even at the "affordable" prices, because half a mill plus is nowhere near affordable for a huge number of people. I really want something to happen so that as renters they can still make homes. I firmly believe our crappy tenancy laws have helped, in no small way, to contribute to the "underclass" that has grown in NZ. People who are disaffected with no stake in their community almost inevitably cease to give a damn.

Good as far as it goes, but why cant they build decent houses for a lot less in Auckland. If a brand new 3 bedroom, stand alone house, can be sold for $350,000 in Christchurch by conventional house builders (National governments own figures), why so much higher in Auckland? I would have thought that the clout of a bulk purchasing government Dept offering the security and continuity of long term contracts, should do it for a lot less than $350,000, why not $250,000 on the basis of what is being achieve in Christchurch with conventional building arrangements. Seems that Labour are going to be little better than National in looking after all the vested interests in the great Auckland property rip off.
I like his idea of selling State houses to the occupants and re-cycling the money. This was originally Bob Clarkson's idea.
Another thing why are we messing around with not taxing capital gains after 5 years. A profit is a profit. Should I be able to delay my employer paying me for 5 years then be exempt tax. Off course not.

Because the land component of the property's value is at least $450,000, that is why. The actual house build costs 100 sq m x $2,000/sq m = $200,000 plus add $50,000 for site works and there you are at $650,000 total end-cost.

The solution really is tens of thousands of nice modern apartments in new high-rises on the isthmus, that are affordable homes and well located. The private sector will deliver these given the right zoning and smooth consenting process. This is the blockage right now.

Labour has created a big millstone around its neck with this policy.

There are millions of hectares of land beyond the city limit that have only farm land value i.e negligible in terms of residential property. Mass development costs of this scale is measured in tens of thousands per section. Develop enough of this land and the land bankers will be forced to the market to recoup as much of their investment before it mostly evaporates. Economy home building costs were nearer $1300 per m2 a couple of years ago outside Auckland and you can still buy a 150-170 m2 home at about $1500/m2. Given the scale that Labour are proposing I am sure that you could screw these costs back down closer to or less than $1000/m2.
I suspect that the reason that Labour is talking such high figures is that they don't want to scare the voters too much. Given a truly free market and and some determination I am sure that Labour could achieve these low prices quite easily. At the sale figures that they are talking about they should be able to still build them cheaply and make a large profit. I.e the plan should be a good profit maker if they have the balls to get really stuck in.

Spot on ChrisM
There is tonnes of land parcels around the fringes that can be developed, with scope for apartments, terraced housing and free standing on small plots. See the www.waimahiainlet.co.nz as an example of what can be done. We looked at these last year when 3bds were under 500k and 4 bds around 535k.

But who funds the infrastructure that needs to go in? The developer, council or govt? Lets make it the developer.....where do you think they will recoup their costs? People thinking they will be buying in Auckland for under 500k in the near future are dreaming....the Govt has waited too long and now at a point of no return. If businesses move to the outskirts then there might be a solution but trying to get roads and transport sorted from the outskirts is going to take time and money, both of which we dont seem to have. Until then we HAVE to slow down demand.....

Historically infrastructure has been funded by the local body from the rates. Unfortunately Auckland city council seem to have an unparalleled capacity to waste our rates. Or is it just that the economics of large cities simply do not add up - the inverse of the economies of scale. May be it would be better for the whole country if the government weighted the building houses everywhere other than Auckland, where issues of scale and infrastructure are more affordable and leave the problems of Auckland to strangle the out of control growth there.

Auckland council is broke. Auckland needs about $100 billion worth of infrastructure to support the current/future population growth. S&P already potentially see Auckland council teetering on a downgrade.... It's not an easy problem to fix....

Why should the rest of the country bankroll Auckland because they have not provided adequately for their growth. Auckland has sucked the life out of the rest of the country where they have been comparatively responsible. If all the companies faced the true cost of shifting their businesses to Auckland, maybe they would not have relocated and we would have more balanced, rational development; not the mess we face now. It is Auckland's problem, let them sink with it.

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Yep they will get my vote too and I have voted National before. It may not be enough to solve the issue and they need to ban overseas investors and clamp down on domestic investors too but it's more than National are doing. I predict a big swing towards Labour. Give me one good reason a young person would vote National.

Maybe, hopefully, it becomes one good reason why a young person should get out and vote in the first place.
The first time voter often has a good reason to continue to follow the party that gave the initial incentive at least until they are otherwise moved.

Because labour have yet to publish coatings (to the tax payer, ie they give more to those who can afford to buy a house at the expense of those who can't) that look remotely realistic for policies such as this.

Clarence - same here. I'm a centrist who has voted Labour AND Nats in the past.
At this stage, I'd vote for Labour.
Bet there are quite a few like us.

So you are one of the ones stupid enough to give JK the chance to screw the country over? Now you want to try and undo the irrepairable damage?

Gee that seems harsh/bitter and twisted!
Key and the Nats don't have a monopoly on poor policy and vested interest.
Previous Labour government were no better.
I was 50/50 and did not find Labour sufficiently compelling. I also expected the Nats to sort out the planning / rma fiasco quicker.
I vote based on personel, performance and policy rather than dogma. I now think Labour offer more overall over those 3 areas. Should I be hung for that or can I not change my view?

Now you want to try and undo the irrepairable damage?

Did you know that it is irreparable and not irrepairable? Just thought that someone called scarfie would like to know that.

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Question remais,how on earth can a young couple even save for a deposit on a 500k to600k house when they are paying rent.I presume a mimimum of 30%.thats 150k deposit.
Horse has bolted.Stable door made out of imported wood,hinges to.

I think we need to structure the sale to FHB as 10% deposit, guaranteed by the government for 30%
but there would have to be major clauses to qualify i.e NZ citizen for at least 15 years,
can not sell for 10 years unless approved, special criteria to meet on this one to be approved
i.e divorcé / breakup of relationship
moving for job
purchase of a new home
loss of income/job
the key is to give a help on to the ladder then up to them

I imagine the deposit rules wont apply to these houses. But there would have to be a rigorous screening process. I should apply for that task.

10
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Christchurch had a wizard. Why not appoint a representative internet troll?

True. In many countries like the UK the parents now have to downsize to get the kids on the property ladder. Hardly an ideal situation. With interest rates so low investors will continue to take market share so we will end up with a property market like Germany and Switzerland where renting becomes the norm.

would still like to see him address demand, ie around immigration
I like non kiwis not being able to buy existing and the bright line moving.
would also like to see neg gearing ring fenced to the loss making entity and GC paid on sale with the loss offset.

The policy is also notable for the near absence of measures designed to punish homeowners and property investors. The focus on positive initiatives to grow the housing stock – rather than pointless nanny-state measures which punish success.

Nice. This is all very sensible indeed. So unlike many of the commenters here. I wonder how you get to buy one of these houses and what restrictions there are on them. Possibly a ballot? You must be restricted, surely, from selling or renting them before a lengthy amount of time.
It's almost like they have been reading my recent comments or perhaps a case of great minds thinking alike?
They are certainly fearful of punishing landowners , the reason they were decisively crushed last election.

good point zac
"I wonder how you get to buy one of these houses and what restrictions there are on them'
this will not wash if someone can immigrant become a resident and get in on this straight away.
and that is my fear with labour and like national like high immigration levels

Yes that is my fear, they solve the housing crisis but then give it all away to new arrivals or rehome refugees. Your suggestion above of being here at least 15 years is similar to mine of 20 years I wrote about a couple of days ago.

Working out the rules is going to make for some really interesting discussions.
For instance, can we apply for our children for the future?
Are children of rich parents going to be discriminated against?

Though need clarification on lot of things said and unsaid but I guess will be clearer in time to come.

One thing is for sure if national wants to give a shot for 4th term should change leader so can start afresh with new idea as defintalely current leaders with denial and lie are not helping them leave aside nz.

Points to ponder for other national party leader.

Anyone but national as JK and company are still in denial and when in denial, how will they even think of solving housing crisis

Call me cynical but talk is cheap. There is a massive shortage of tradesman in Auckland right now so need more immigrants to plug the gap.It also goes down to the old argument about speeding up the applications.

Whoever is in power it is going to take 3 or 4 years to sort out the supply side problem.

Yes but its more than National are planning. Sadly nothing is going to be enough but if Labour start gaining serous support for this there may be smallest bit of hope that National may do something. Let' not completely give up.

Correct. It puts pressure back on National, at the very least.

Not Cynical at all Penguin, you are right ... I like what was outlined, but it is very sketchy on how to do it... most numbers are a bit over optimistic to close the sale .... One major drawback is that Auckland will be littered with caravans and batch like small units which is a waste of resources.... And no mention of the " dirty Greedy developers and investors" because they need to work with them as mentioned.

Correct Penguine supply will take time but what is important along with supply is to curb speculation so measure on demand side is needed and that early the better.

Labour has atleast admitted about puting restriction on non resident buyer and 5 years.

May be national party will see sense and take some steps now along with rbnz. Still time for them to act.

Very true Roy.

Unfortunately I don't share you hope or optimism - onk onk , flap flap

National signed away our right to single out overseas buyers with the TPP, they are hardly going to do anything like this now. Labour may be on shaky ground doing it as well, but at least they are prepared to test those waters. I agree, though, foreigners need to be OUT of our housing market, and in that I would include new builds, we just do not need them muddying the waters at the moment. Most especially I would ban them from being landlords and make that retrospective, to hell with it. I think we'd be horrified to find out how much welfare in the form of top ups is going to people who not even resident here. That is sheer madness.

Absolutely. We need to at least match our policy to that of Australia, and there are rumblings coming out of Canada that they're going to tighten things up. If New Zealand doesn't wake the hell up and at least match those nations in the hurdles to be cleared for buying, we'll end up with the final surge of desperate, unsophisticated hocked-to-the-eyeballs international bubble buyers, and thus be left holding the biggest parcel of scheisse when the music stops and this mania inevitably implodes. We're not big enough to absorb a disaster like that.

12
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A $500 - $600K house is not affordable. It's a joke. No wonder it's welcomed by the Property Institute.

Come on Kate!!!! It's all relative, and by Auckland standards that IS affordable!
Well done Labour!

"All relative" - to what?

to the median house price, of course.
What is it now in Auckland, 900K or something?
Relative to that 500-600K is affordable

Kate, the cheapest house (not Caravan) you can build with very basic appointments will cost $200.000 ,, that is $2000 per sq meter with either garage or carport (assuming 100 sq mt house) add to that anywhere between $40,000 to 50,000 in design, permits, compliance and contribution fees ... so as long as the section prices remain over $450,000 then 500 - 600 is affordable .... WHEN the councils release sections at $100K a piece, then you can get a small basic 100 sq mt 3 bdrm for around $350,000 - $375,000 .... till then, don't believe any secondhand salesman plot, and affordable will remain 500 to 600 , for now`1

I don't disagree with your numbers, but you're talking about price or cost relative to other properties, which has absolutely nothing to do with affordability. As Kate has pointed out - $500-600k is not affordable for the average Aucklander (i.e. the one who earns less than $100-120k pa).

Material cost is a real issue. The Fletchers/Carters cartel is an abomination.

exactly, it's relative. And relative to salaries 500k to 600k for a house is an unaffordable joke.

I really, really want to like this policy but I can't. Not completely. There is good and bad in it and, if it does go a long way to fixing up our dysfunctional markets, then it will be by accident not design.

The Bad

Labour has also failed the Grimes test big time. Affordability is an attribute of the whole market not a select few dwellings. So this policy as it is presented is only about building some houses and shaving maybe 10% off the cost.

This policy has great potential to go off the rails once the (Labour-led) government actually have to start not only building these properties but carefully rationing them out to the deserving few. And then monitoring compliance with the rules. It has all the hallmarks of a system acquiring a life of its own with the original purposes soon forgotten.

Once we get to deciding who gets one of these houses it is hard to imagine Labour not wanting to ease the chronic overcrowding in AKL. Which would be fantastic but it won't change the dynamics of the property market there. Those who are not lucky enough to qualify for one of these houses could still face costs similar to today's.

There is nowhere in the world where rationing out "affordable" housing has succeeded in fixing a dysfunctional property market.

I don't like UDA's. CERA was not a great role model and showed what happens when governments in Wellington think they know better than the locals.

The Good

It's more coherent than the Nats (not hard I know).

This policy could accidentally trigger a general fall in AKL house prices. What has been generally missing in most commentary is the role expectations play in setting house prices (Bernard made this point on RNZ recently). Both Auckland Council and the government have made many credible statements over the last five or so years that there will be a shortage of housing in Auckland for as far as the eye can see. So of course everyone expects that house prices will continue to rise.

The beauty of Kiwibuild and this associated policy is that the government would be taking a lead and making credible commitments to create lots of houses. "Investors" are going to think twice about bidding up a property if they think the shortages are on track to easing.

Of course Labour would have to get elected or the Nats find a way of stealing the policy without getting caught.

'Of course Labour would have to get elected or the Nats find a way of stealing the policy without getting caught.'
Or it will pressure the Nats to do something else that has a meaningful impact.
I think it's a great day for the housing issue in NZ. Well done Labour!

Totally agree Kate. Wasted opportunity of labour. They should be targeting house prices at 3 x income, maybe 150K to 250K as affordable, and bring the market back to an economically just level for NZer's. Also really like your comment Donald Ellis

Put the right things in place and that could happen.
1. Foreigners completely out of the market, not even new builds, just out, and definitely not a single cent of welfare going to foreign landlords, even the ones we have now
2. Start changing our tenancy laws to better resemble Germany's, that way people who choose or have to rent for life can actually make a home of where they live
3. Building lots of houses
4. Control immigration

Exactly PocketAcres. Many ways to easily do this, see my comment below where I've added a few more

PocketAcres?? Lordy, how big do you think my trousers are?? DON'T ANSWER THAT :D

My concern is if the Govt carries on with WFF tax credits etc,in 10 t0 20 years we will end up with families in million dollar houses basically paid for by the Govt.
Not an ideal situation.
We live in a false economy and this will add to it.

And I get particularly grumpy at the thought that a single cent of welfare money ends up in the hands of foreign landlords, most especially accommodation top ups. We all should!

Kiwi saver accounts will be plundered.

Ah, but Labour plan on making KS enrolment compulsory, thus they will not get my vote on this alone. My savings and investments are my business and I demand 100% control over my post tax income

lol looks pretty awful to me. Affordable ahahah

Ian64 - suggestions then?

First thing would be to ban investors from buying them. Only FHB can buy and can't sell for 10 years.
Second progressive elimination of accommodation supplement. Build houses with that money instead
Third Enjoy.

I'd add to your list Ian64:

--ban foreign owners, make them sell if they don't have a NZ passport
--ban foreign buyers, if no NZ passport, no purchase
--take away tax incentives for investors, no deducting rental losses
--Introduce bonds idea with targeted rates to finance infrastructure
--reduce immigration to 10,000 a year
--tax investors and speculators with a land tax
--remove GST on building materials
--relax restrictions on importing building materials
--make councils release land quickly

The list could go on. Many ways to reduce house prices and make them affordable again. Government must WANT TO DO IT.

It will be very interesting to see how things pan out when Labour starts the process of banning foreigners and you seem to be as mean as me where that goes - excellent. Let's just hold out hope the TPP won't have been ratified by the time Labour gets a chance to implement or it could get a bit nasty.

Nats should of never given those rights away in trade agreements. Who gave them the mandate to sell our land overseas like that? Those agreements need to be re-negotiated or cancelled.

It amused me some time later when Labour proposed something (I cannot for the life of me remember what it was) that Key said was undemocratic as it stifled future governments and policy. Face palm, Key.

--ban foreign owners, make them sell if they don't have a NZ passport

Yup, just like Adolf Hitler made the Jews sell their businesses and homes in 1939

--ban foreign buyers, if no NZ passport, no purchase

Good idea, so we are just like China, Russia and Saudi Arabia - real forward thinking nations

--take away tax incentives for investors, no deducting rental losses

Cool, all rents will go up by 20-30% across NZ as anyone renting must do off an investor

--Introduce bonds idea with targeted rates to finance infrastructure

I'll give you that one

--reduce immigration to 10,000 a year

Nice one, and what about Aussies and returning Kiwi's will they be allowed back too?

--tax investors and speculators with a land tax

Already being done with Bright Line test and city rates

--remove GST on building materials

Just watch the building industry put their prices up by 10-15%

--relax restrictions on importing building materials

What restrictions?

--make councils release land quickly

OK

Andrew Little’s speech: Backing the Kiwi dream of home ownership
The Standard.

The Kiwi dream was low population.

that's a damn good speech, just read it. I'll be voting Labour

What a disgrace this govt is - just been watching the Sunday show on TV One - watch it on demand or Sky Plus one at 8pm - absolutely disgusting seeing how people are being marginalised & Bill English making excuses - developers supposed to build 78 social houses in one project but its not happening.

Bill English is a practising Catholic right? I'm a Catholic, and at the heart of Catholic teaching is concern for the poor.
What are you thinking Bill???

A problem for the future would be this.The first 5000 homes maybe 500k to 600k but the 2nd lot built the following year won't be and the final 5000 built in 10 years sure as hell won't be.
Any one know how to keep the prices low?

Would you want a tired run down house in dire need of demolition or would you want a small brand new house?
I suspect that these new houses would be snapped up at "affordable prices" and will then be on-sold as unaffordable. ie There will be a subsidy applied to the first buyer.
Maybe Labours assumption is the the market will be flooded with these affordable places so that no second owner would want to buy them. How does that theory work? Does it mean that the old run down crappo houses will end up becoming derelict? Shanty towns emerge?

This policy strikes me as more of a redistribution of wealth than a prolonged attack on house prices. Not that I'm against redistribution, but let's do it in a broad-based way that's fair and equitable, i.e. through tax policy. This proposal would need to be managed extremely carefully as you are essentially deciding who will and wont receive tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of free capital.

The best way to make housing affordable would be to build 100000 houses and then dump them on the market all at once.

No politician, not Key and not even Little will admit to suggesting prices of current stock will fall.
BUT the market will take care of price and if enough houses are built the one flexible item is basic land cost.
Not even the landbankers can resist a pressure from the release of plenty of land particularly when it is acquired at the going rural rate. Some victims will occur. Grimes said that property is a risky investment and just like any other investment where supply and demand balance changes.

Why borrow 2 billion? At what rate of interest? And who actually pays? Who will win the private contract at kickstart?

Details please. Lots of details.
Immigration? Policy on 'non residents'?
Details please.
Honestly, if Labour do not do their homework and make a concise and detailed policy case then forget it. Winston is still the man cause he will cut immigration.
And get rid of RWT! actually incentivise saving and businesses without added bureaucracy or government controls

Winston is a lost cause and I remain stunned that anyone would vote for him - this is relatively comprehensive for a political party,

This is going to be very interesting. I imagine it will be decided by some sort of ballot after an initial application process sorts out the candidates according to some predetermined criteria. Singapore already has a model that we could use.
This complex in Singapore was 12 times oversubscribed and sold out within days of flats being offered however it looks great.

Luxury hotel? No, Singapore's new-generation public housing

Here are some really good details on Singapore's public housing projects:

Public housing in Singapore

Some interesting points:

Singapore maintains a quota system of ethnicities through the Ethnic Integration Policy.By ensuring that each block of units are sold to families from ethnicities roughly comparable to the national average, it seeks to avoid physical racial segregation and formation of ethnic enclaves common in other multi-racial societies.

A buyer must be a Singaporean citizen, or P.R. and be 21 years of age and have a family. Non-citizens and singles are not allowed to purchase new HDB flats.

The question is do we have the cajones to manage this properly like the Singaporeans?

The alternative is to manage it by price which is kind of a sneaky way of doing it but essentially the best people can pay the highest price. The people with a combination of high IQ and work ethic will win the race. Perhaps we could have competitions?
Of course people will complain, hey that's just dumb luck having a high IQ, that work ethic, just lucky you had good parents.
Or how about selectees are chosen on physical beauty? I'm all for making the world a more beautiful place.
How about arm wrestling competitions? Or chess competitions?
Okay, I'm being silly now...or am I? It's quite a can of worms when you have such an expanded consciousness.

"The question is do we have the cajones to manage this properly like the Singaporeans?" We probably aren't as anal as them

i must confess I haven't read Labours full policy - but have they addressed the land issue? this is the area that as are I'm concerned both parties fail.

What a lot of politicians and commentators don't get is that Auckland is no longer a big town but is rather a small city. Therefore, town solutions, such as just building a another suburb, actually will make things far worse. The only way to bring down the price is for greater density in the areas that people want to live.
Also, phase out the accommodation supplement - it's only a subsidy for landlords. By doing that we would save $2b a year. There is the money to build enough housing and start to train quality builders.

Labour, via Phil Twyford, said they would protect Pukekohe soils, so big tick for that, Key said, who cares about a few onions, dunce's hat for him, luckily it's been super-glued to his head.

Let's punish those smart enough to purchase lifestyle blocks on the peripheral of akl by compulsory acquisition. All profits go back to the government. If anyone has land compulsory acquired they should be entitled to the profits. National understands this. Labour will lose a tonne of votes over this.

houses between 500k and 600k and plenty of people here clapping at it as the ultimate solution?
Has everybody lost their mind? That's still around 7 times the annual household income. THAT'S NOT AFFORDABLE! That's a joke.
So there is a bubble and their "solution" is to help more people into the "property ladder" mindset? How's that a solution?

Patches and more patches. Hopefully the bubble bursts before the irresponsible government borrows more money to keep fueling the idea that everybody needs to own a house at any price and that buying through debt is always a good investment.

What we need is better rental laws. I'm sick of not having long term agreements in rentals. I don't want to buy. Not because a bank tells me I cannot afford it (I have saved enough for a deposit), but because common sense tells me that it's not worth it. What I want is the option to rent quality houses for long term like in most of the developed countries.

Agree 100%.

No one really wants affordable housing IF it has an effect on their own equity is why. So many have borrowed to the hilt that any sudden change in supply and affordability by any means will hit everyone. That's the ugly truth and real elephant in the room. Real Affordability means negative equity and they know it.

Our rubbish tenancy laws are the next housing aspect that we need to get all uppity about. Phil Twyford has made mention of it, I think pressure will need to be kept up to make sure some good policy gets fleshed out there. I suggest leases more like commercial ones, that are renewable and resaleable, not for everything but there must be options like this, we have to get away from this business of "people farming" that our current laws encourage.

"The Authority will use the best of public and private sector expertise..." will this be compulsory? Given the choice of working for government or private the best expertise tends almost always chooses to work in private sector. Government work is slow, costly and pays terribly to fund the layers of project managers.

If a capital Gains Tax is such a panacea, then why have property prices still boomed elsewhere in the world. It will make no difference, it is a question of supply, with pathetic Nimbys, etc it takes too long to develop. I know because I’ve done it and the councils are a joke and the problem is hugely their fault.

supply... of money.

Why in Australia despite the massive oversupply there's also a bubble? What's the common factor?

A generous banking system capable of lending ad infinitum and being the destination of dodgy foreign capital.

Umm, cause the cgt overseas is not set high enough. How would you like a 90% cgt to swallow? Along with a stamp duty? Bye bye

None of us would sell, there would be a housing shortage and prices would go through the roof. It happened in the 1970s when the silly Labour Govt tried to do it and failed.

Ohh, you would sell alright or face years of negative equity. BTW, by 1980 National had the country bankrupt so....way to go.

Foodstuffs,Woolies and The Warehouse CEO'S will be rubbing their hands together with the thought of all these new suburbs and nobody to service them.

My 5. We need to protect the average tax payer. Bin overseas ownership in favour of them leasing NZ property. Do do away with the tax offset on debt, and enforce tax on any investment sale. Definition if you have clipped one cent of tax offset or depreciation related tax adjustment its an investment. Yes that will get your partially rented holiday house as well.

A worthy election issue. Amazed it had no focus last time. If gen rent wants a change get off you cellphone and facebook and walk to the nearest polling station next year, otherwise more of the same.

PS I would toughen up NZ company legislation to make listed companies managers and directors more liable, to make the NZ share market more attractive. Make property developers and their trusts more liable as well.

Typical Labour; Spend Spend Spend ourselves into more debt. I think Immigration Policies(demand side of the equation) need to be reworked, we don't need any more "skilled" McDonalds workers

Labour promise to build 50,000 more houses safe in the knowledge that they'll never get in at the next election and so won't actually have to deliver on this promise.

Well, that's where Winston comes in to tip them over the line and then... savage them if they don't deliver.

a lot of what labour announced is very similar to NZ first housing policy from the last election , I will be interested to see when details are rolled out how similar they are

New Zealand First will:
##Provide government assistance for first home buyers.
##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.
##Interest at 2% p.a. for at least 5 years, then rising to lowest market rates.
##Purchasers would build their own homes using normal bank financing, with title to the section transferred to them and the amount owing for the section secured by a second ranking statutory land charge.
##Encourage smaller and more affordable houses on smaller sections.
##Require better building quality and sustainable housing objectives – including leak proofing, insulation and earthquake and landslip resistance.
##Encourage greater use of New Zealand expertise in prefabricated houses.
##Every home to have compulsory and adequate insurance cover. 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.
##Ensure that New Zealand’s housing stock is restricted to New Zealanders.
##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.
##The terms and conditions upon which existing approvals by the Overseas Investment Commission for the ownership of land by non-residents would be fully monitored and enforced.
##Provide low cost government funding to local authorities for new elderly persons housing and public rental housing projects. Long term two per cent loan finance would be made available.
##Encourage private investment in upgrading rental housing through the taxation system. Owners of rental houses could invest in specified qualifying home improvements and be able to expense them for income tax purposes in the year in which the expense is incurred, including home insulation, solar heating, heat pumps, HRV heating systems, wood pellet and other approved burners, earthquake strengthening, fire, food and other disaster protection.
##A New Zealand Housing Plan will be developed to revamp the New Zealand housing market covering: housing availability and affordability, rental homes supply and affordability, housing-land development and redevelopment, home purchase finance, insurance cover and earthquakes/disaster cover, sustainable housing objectives (including energy efficiency), housing quality, integration of housing with sustainable transport systems, use of New Zealand expertise in prefabricated housing.

Updated 3 July 2014.
Further updates in the 2014 election campaign.

All New Zealanders who are working must have a genuine opportunity to buy their own home.

New Zealand First believes that this is only achievable by direct government intervention in New Zealand’s overheated housing market. There is more than enough housing at the top end of incomes and serious shortages at the bottom end.
..

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Flip flop in less than 24 hours - you gotta laugh;
http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/81971004/government-to-forego-h...

I think the election has begun Kate. Going to be a real feisty one too

Trying to laugh but it's a cringe worthy coincidence..

- English denied opposition pressure had forced the Government's hand, saying it was part of long-term planning.

Well, being National's long term is probably about as long as the memory of a goldfish, it probably was. Please be fair.