Opinion: The Government needs to take a hard look at the risks to our property market and economy from a rash of foreign investment

Opinion: The Government needs to take a hard look at the risks to our property market and economy from a rash of foreign investment

By David Hargreaves

New Zealand may be an island - or two islands – but there is no point in our continuing to run housing policy as if we are somehow isolated from the rest of the world.

As the housing market continues to heat up again, as evidenced by the latest house sales figures, there is an issue within that generating plenty of heat in its own right. Yes, I’m talking about overseas investment in New Zealand property.

The BNZ, which in collaboration with the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand runs a monthly housing survey, is, in its next survey due out soon, going to derive more qualitative evidence on just where buyers of homes are coming from in terms of geographic location. Then we will have a clearer idea of the true picture.

Anecdotally, and that’s always a dangerous basis for debate, foreign buyers are now making up a big portion of the total buyers of houses – particularly in Auckland.

The debate is in danger of becoming unbalanced, not to mention extremely xenophobic. For reasons not clear to this observer, the fact that many of the buyers appear to be Chinese seems to add fuel to the fire.

The reality is, it makes not a jot of difference where a buyer comes from, providing they are legally entitled to buy a property.

Bidding up prices

But in a practical sense overseas buyers make a difference because obviously they are potentially people bidding up the prices when those prices would otherwise not be pushed up.

I’m certainly aware of recent occurrences in which houses have been sold to overseas-based buyers who were the only bidders. Obviously there are two parts to that equation. On the one hand you can say that this is house prices being pushed up – arguably then making housing less affordable for Kiwis. But on the other hand the seller, very probably a Kiwi, has got a price for their property they would not otherwise have realised.

Swings and roundabouts perhaps. But it all points to the likelihood of the first home buyer being more and more frozen out of the market. Is that necessarily a problem? Well, owning a home has always been central to the New Zealand psyche. And if the young people of today start to feel alienated by not being able to buy a home, then they might just up sticks and leave. We have a big enough problem in that regard already without adding to it.

So, what to do?

At the moment this country has a remarkably hands-off policy when it comes to the allowing of foreign investment. Generally it is not a problem for an overseas-based buyer to buy a New Zealand house.

Complications arise when a purchase involves “sensitive” land. For this, read farmland that exceeds 5 hectares in size, or land over 0.4 hectares adjoining reserve or conservation areas, or land over 0.2 hectares adjoining the foreshore. So, buying an Auckland suburban house is not a problem, whether you intend to actually be in the country and live in it or not.

It is different elsewhere

So, what happens overseas?

If you look at Britain and the United States it appears to be about as easy for a foreigner to buy property as it is here. But.

In the US an offshore buyer can expect to pay 30% tax on rental income received from a property. Additionally, there is capital gains tax.

In Britain, it’s arguably even easier to buy a property, but boy does the tax guy get busy there.

An investor in a UK property could find themselves sampling five different flavours of tax. There’s stamp duty of 1% to 4% of the purchase price, the ongoing council tax levied by the friendly local council, potentially income tax on unrealised gains in the value of the property, capital gains tax and inheritance tax.

Remember, successive New Zealand governments have steadfastly refused to move on the idea of a capital gains tax on housing, though it was an official Labour Party policy at the last election.
What about property policies across the ditch? Well, that’s interesting.

In 2008 the Australian government actually relaxed the rules for foreign investment in housing. After house prices proceeded to shoot up 10% in the following year, the government had a rethink and introduced some stringent new measures in 2010.

Building the stock

The Australian focus is quite different. They are not attempting to tax foreigners out of existence. But they have clamped down on overseas-based buyers snapping up existing property.
Foreigners temporarily residing in Australia can buy an existing house. But they have to sell it when they leave.

Foreigners not living in Australia can buy land with an existing house on it – but only if they intend to redevelop the site, with one or two new houses on it. This work typically needs to be started within 24 months.

Likewise, non-resident foreigners can buy undeveloped land, but they have to start development again within 24 months.

Foreigners can buy new properties that have not previously been lived in.

Clearly what the Australian government has tried to do is turn a perceived negative into a positive. The underpinning philosophy behind the Australian approach now is to increase the country’s housing stock. On that point it is interesting to note, however, that the numbers of new home approvals have in the past three years dipped from over 110,000 to under 90,000 – though as much as anything else this could have plenty to do with the downturn in the Australian economy in that time.

Certainly there still seemed plenty of foreign buyer interest, with the Foreign Investment Review Board approving over 10,700 applications from foreign investors in 2012, more than double the number two years earlier.

So, that is Australia. What about some of the Asian jurisdictions?

Slam, slam, slam

Well, for the past four years Singapore has been taking to its heated property market with a massive stick. The measures are actually too many to cite here, but have included a variety of tax hikes and new taxes and limits on loan to valuation ratios. More recently too there have been incentives for first-time buyers.

Over in Hong Kong late last year they slammed a 15% tax on foreign buyers, as well as raising stamp duty for short-term speculators as they tried to stem a 20% rise in property prices.

In respect to Singapore and Hong Kong, it was interesting to note that in some paid “advertorial” in last weekend’s Sunday Star-Times newspaper, Bayleys Real Estate director David Bayley said that “more than ever, Singaporean and Hong Kong investors are looking at New Zealand as an alternative opportunity”.

He went on to say that in December Bayleys had a 12% spike in the number of inquiry calls from Hong Kong and a 17% jump in the number of website hits from the region. This interest had continued and Bayleys was “tracking a marked rise in traffic emanating from Singapore”.

This is highly significant. What we have here is investors from within the Asian region apparently effectively being driven to get interested in New Zealand property through some fairly draconian measures closer to home.

Impact on NZ

The point surely is that the more jurisdictions within our vicinity that take their own measures to dampen property prices then the more attractive New Zealand, with its easy access and absence of tax bombs, will become. And there ain’t no way a young married couple with two young children are going to be able to compete with a Hong Kong or Singaporean city slicker used to paying telephone numbers for what in many cases would be considerably less impressive properties than can be acquired here, with nice wide open spaces thrown in.

So, given that countries around us are taking their own measures to impact their own property markets and that this in turn now appears to be feeding into upward pressure on the New Zealand market, what do we do?

Clearly the Government needs to do something otherwise we risk having a more and more unbalanced economy, where inflation becomes driven by house prices that are themselves driven by offshore influences.

What do you think?

There are options

The obvious options are to introduce capital gains tax and/or stamp duty. Or, we go down the Australian road and look to turn this foreign interest into an advantage.

According to Statistics New Zealand there were consents issued for 16,929 new housing units (including apartments) last year, up from the trough of 13,662 the year before but well down on the 31,423 issued in 2004 when the bull market was getting in full roar. It can reasonably be expected that we will see house starts rise in number this year again.

But if foreign, non-resident investors were forced to buy only new houses, there is no doubt that new house figure could be pushed up further, meaning more jobs and a boost to the economy. Would it ease pricing pressure on existing houses, making them more affordable for first time buyers? Logic suggests it would, but you never really know until you try.

But try the Government must.

Action is needed urgently if the distortions of the housing market are to be prevented from causing ructions in the wider economy.

This is clearly a big issue for everybody in New Zealand and it is one we’ll be continuing to take a close look at during the year.

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What do I think.... along with the problems with the planning system i raised this problem years ago. The policy analysis in govt is either seriously deficient or is being ignored

The Aussie approach makes sense to me. We need more houses and more jobs. Housing construction is a great job creator as it leads on to activity in other sectors such as carpet manufacturing, land scaping etc etc. Kiwis cant afford to pay the cost of new construction given the cost of land and all the taxes and levies. If there are lots of non residents out there who have cash to spend on NZ housing we might as well get them to fund the construction of more housing stock. Its something they cant take away again.
It would have to be politically popular , especially in Auckland and no one could have a crack at us is respect of free trade agreements or trans pacific partnerships if every other country in the region is doing the same thing. It wont cause any distortions any where else or disadvantage any voters like Loan to value ratio rules or capital gains taxes and it could probably be done by regulation in a few days.
What are we waiting for?

Well at least your South African migrant is building 6 new houses , he seems to be part of the solution and  not part of the problem.
6 new houses being constructed means new investment , jobs , revenue ,and  taxes  for the rest of us

Your'e kidding right?
How about looking at the cause...too many people, both bred locally and imported, all fighting over NZ's (and the worlds) limited resource base.  Building more and more houses will never satisy the massive global population growth currently in play...and as we have such a stupid policy of encouraging them to come here,  the global population problem is also our problem

The REAL question is "ownership" not "buyers"
The answer to this question will be in the 2013 Census data.
Question: do you own your home or residence?
Question: nationality?
Question: length of time since arriving in new zealand
Data: by region? by city? by postcode?
For the data-miners the test will be the answer to the question for the new arrivals who now own their property - do you have a mortgage

What ??? Not Chinese ??? What happened ??
Unless you are telling me that he is South African Chinese ???

This issue is distorted and we are not looking at the whole picture . Are these new migrants / residents or non -resident buyers?
I have not seen actual emperical evidence of non -resident foreigners buying
 Asians ( Chinese , Indian and SE Asian)  now make up the biggest new arrival of migrants to NZ by a huge margin , its now a flood and heading for tsunamic proportions because the NZIS has redeuced the bar to entry on some visa catagories  .
Asians, per the latest data,  exceed the the number of arrivals from  the UK , South Africa and the whole  of Europe combined
They have to live somewhere  when the get here , they too are horrified at the house prices , which they often cannot afford , so they buy property in syndicates
By the looks of it , the  Asian folk at the auctions are buying modest middle class homes and seem to be NZ resident or migrants on variuos visa catagories.

A very good point. We dont seem to have any figures on who is buying property which makes any policy decisions a bit fraught. If it is new zealand residents of Asian origin we cant have a discriminiatory policy. That would have to be in contravention of something.

A very good point. We dont seem to have any figures on who is buying property which makes any policy decisions a bit fraught. If it is new zealand residents of Asian origin we cant have a discriminiatory policy. That would have to be in contravention of something.

The auctions I've been to, it seems to be new zealand residents of Asian origin that are mostly buying, winning, outbidding everyone else...but where is all their $$$ coming from  (relatives sending over $)? Because they seem to have bottomless pockets.

buying on behalf of

Punish off shore investors (  i.e. Asians)  and who knows what what will happen next?
Maybe they will put tarrifs and taxes our exports into their countries in a tit for tat  repsonse.
Nothing  is that simple.
Never forget.
For every action there is a reaction.

OK, so let's just have a totally open economy, no regulation to protect kiwis and our economy.
So let's start with opening up immigrant labour, how about get rid of minimum wages??? What do you think Big Daddy?  Retail workers from India could be employed for say $4 an hour, kiwis put out of work....great
The fact is the lack of restrictions on non-resident property investment is yet another policy that provides benefits for investors like BigDaddy, to the overall detriment of the country.
The Aussie policy is perfect. Allowing overseas investment in new property keeps construction ticking over.
NZ is so dumb and shortsighted it makes me sick  

Big Daddy - Off-shore investors in NZ are not contributing to the NZ tax base at present.
While I agree that every action has a reaction - if NZ'ers become increasingly priced out of the countries housing market then the reaction could well be a vastly shrinking home ownership rate for NZ'ers in general. Also a lower tax take for the Government from incomes derived from property.
If you look at the tax system you will see that it favours off-shore investors over local investors/buyers. This is segregation by nationality!
When citizens and residents are not afforded the same tax advantages as Foreign off-shore investors we have the worst kind of segregation that can be imposed upon a Nation.

foreign buyers are now making up a big portion of the total buyers of houses – particularly in Auckland.
In a statement to the Sunday Star-Times, Coleman said: "Department of Labour research shows there is no strong link between immigration and house prices and migrants provide a net gain to the New Zealand economy of around $1.9 billion a year. If migration stopped today, the economy would contract by 10% over 10 years."
I realise that is about immigration but it demonstrates how blinkered the government is.

Yes we do have a choice....we could choose a shrinking of our economy or an increase of economic growth.....Go with shrinking the economy rather than see all those pesky Asians ???
It's  like driking poison to quench thirst  ...(sorry Old Asian saying)

The Australian Productivity Commision concluded that there was little or no discernable benefits to Australians from immigration; it has all been captured by the migrants (and Harcourts?).
Savings Working Group
January 2011
“The big adverse gap in productivity between New Zealand and other countries opened up from the 1970s to the early 1990s. The policy choice that increased immigration – given the number of employers increasingly unable to pay First-World wages to the existing population and all the capital requirements that increasing populations involve – looks likely to have worked almost directly against the adjustment New Zealand needed to make and it might have been better off with a lower rate of net immigrationThis adjustment would have involved a lower real interest rate (and cost of capital) and a lower real exchange rate, meaning a more favourable environment for raising the low level of productive capital per worker and labour productivity. The low level of capital per worker is a striking symptom of New Zealand’s economic challenge.


 drinking poison to quench thirst ----
饮 -- pronounce: [yin 3] ; meaning: to drink
鸠 -- pronounce: [ju 1] ; meaning: a tasty but poisonous drink
止 -- pronounce: [zhi 3]; meaning: to stop
渴 -- pronounce: [ke 3]; meaning: thirsty
1,2,3,4 are tones. 
ma1  ma2  ma3  ma4.

On the one hand you can say that this is house prices being pushed up – arguably then making housing less affordable for Kiwis. But on the other hand the seller, very probably a Kiwi, has got a price for their property they would not otherwise have realised.
another way of looking at it is that asset inflation isn't wealth creation: it simply creates a hole that has to be filled. Foriegn buyers are a way of preventing a correction?

Yes, let's go on an anti-Asian (especially Chinese) housing property rant....
A little bit of Xenophibic Racist outpour can't do any harm...Our very own Remuera Grey Power is feeling very discomforted with his Asian neighbours....they can't talk to each other !!!
We need to blame somebody in this housing fiasco. Of course it cannot be caused y our Worship Mayor Len Brown land policy that is causing prices to rocket due to shortage of land.  Of course it is not caused by our very own RMA delaying housing consent (by our very own Grey Power members refusing to allow new housing blocking his view).
Of course it is also not caused by our Banks dishing out free credits creating policy centered on house mortgages and of course it is not the fault of our very own RBNZ refusing to pull  back the banks from such credit creation. 
Yes and it is the fault of those pesky Chinese immigrants both legal and illegal that are buying everything that smell of new paint...inorder to have a house to live in....Even though statistics shows the largest group if immigrants still comes from UK...(maybe UK Chinese ??)...It is their fault that our City council policy is causing land prices to rocket upwards even though New Zealand has the lowest population density in the world. The Council believes that feeding cattle is more important than housing people in an affordable manner.

Do you think elderly New Zealanders should have to move over (or out) so foriegners can move in?
The biggest group in Auckland is Chinese if I recall?

Excuse me jh, when has any "elder;y New Zealanders" being "forced" to move over/move out by another foreigner ??
Oh by the way, when he is "forced" to "moveout/moveover" who gets to keep the money when he sells his home at record prices??

KIN says: statistics shows the largest group of immigrants comes from UK
Are you really sure?
How do you explain the article in the NZ Herald last week quoting NZ Statistics where the asian population of Auckland increased between 1990 census and 2006 census from 5% of total AKL population to 20% in 15 years. Wait till you see the 2013 census.
Next question is :- do they comprise 20% of all employers?

Statistics New Zealand is projecting 20% in Auckland in 15 years, not now and not in New Zealand as a whole.....Most Asians settle in auckland and not the rest of New Zealand because it's the only place they can make a living....Right now there are only 5% in New Zealand and 12% in auckland....
When does 12% or even 15% becomes such a threat ???
As for employment, does Asians ever get employed by "Non-Asian" in the first place??
Most Asian immigrants become self employed because the cannot get employed by "Non-asian".

kin: try again .. mis-information? ..
Asian people will account for 30 per cent of Auckland's population by 2021 - up from 19 per cent in the 2006 census and and 5.5 per cent in 1991.
At the last Census, the Asian population of Auckland was 19 per cent. That is projected to reach 23.5 per cent by 2016 and 27 to 30 per cent by 2021.

Kin , you are wrong , the Asian migration has overtaken European migration in 2010 , and the margin is now massive .
So big is the differential , the trend is now unlikely to reverse .... ever 
Its a  tsunami of Asians getting visa's to live , work, start businesses  join family and study here

Please spare the Xenophobic Racist rant and come out with real figures....

If we have a housing shortage where are the homeless? 
Where are the hordes of people sleeping in the streets?
Why aren't there gangs of roving shelterless people breaking into houses to get a roof over their heads?

The answer  is there is no shortage.
There are plenty of houses and flats to go around for all to be housed in reasonable comfort and reasonble prices.
No body is just hanging in space. Everyone is either renting or owning.
The housing shortage is a myth perpetrated by the left wingers and whipped up for political  gain.
The only victim in all this hype is the truth.
(Olly Newland website 8th March)

Yeah, well given Olly Newland makes his riches out of many people who cannot afford to own their own home, he can take his view and shove it where the sun don't shine. His like is part of the problem

Raegun - At least Olly Newland is a NZ'er.  I think it is imperative to distinguish the differences between housing shortages and housing affordability.
The shortage side of the market will push up prices in the interim until supply needs are meet at which point prices balance out. Regional and Local Government policies etc  have severely restricted the supply side of the market. The market has not been free to operate as it should have been allowed. Those people and their policies that created the shortages should be held to account. 
The affordabilty issues has a few more string to it's bow. Some people will never be able to afford a house because of their spending habits, poor education, lack of knowledge on economics, low income, Government interference and compliance and the big one is poor attitude.
I have absolutely no problem with people becoming wealthy as long as they do it honestly.  Good on Olly Newland if he has wealth and the good thing about Olly is he is sharing how he obtained his wealth.
I have no respect for people who rip other people off, whether by deceipt in business practice, by Political interference or being to lazy to work etc.

Some confusion here between immigration and non residents buying homes with hot money either to launder it or purely as investment.
I think Mr Hargreaves was talking about the latter, whether Chinese or American.
Permanent residents can do what they like.

How long have I been saying no non-resident foreign buyers. I am fairly blue in the face if it helps.
The next discussion we have to have is where to stop with increasing population, as far as Auckland goes I reckon she's about it, there isn't enough infrastructure to cope with much more  and for the rest of the country, not much more
This is a world that needs less people not more and time is here for the human race to come to terms with that. Go to David Attenboroughs site, Population Matters and you might get a bit of an idea of what needs to be done

You are dead right. It is not about race it's about the fact that we in NZ live in a great place, but slowly it is danger of becoming just another overpopulated mess.
It amazes me when no one in Auck seems to be questionng why their city has to absord a million more people.  Crazy.

I've been banging on too about a 12 month morotorium on immigration to see what happens. No Chinese, no Indians, no English, no South Africans, no anybody. 12 months will fly by but Auckland's population will drop by probably 25-30,000 if people continue to move to Australia and elsewhere at the current rate. Would that bring supply and demand back into balance? Would that force employers to train graduates and other educated kiwis looking for work rather than import workers they have to put less effort into? Who wants to see Auckland ruined socially and environmentally with another 500,000 people?
Won't happen because neither Labour or National or the banks want house prices to stop rising. The PM has said several times  quite clearly that he will not do anything that might make house prices drop. How can you address affordability while blatantly supporting high prices? Every time mortgage credit slows down the country goes into recession. It's double down and go for broke time for Key and the Nats. They have no other ideas.

Dead right in all respects.
You cant keep tipping people into Auckland
Just last week was a perfect example
One single accident, a serious multiple car pile up on the Newmarket Viaduct in the afternoon, brought the entire city to a grinding halt for many hours, North and South

Another million people within Auckland current boundaries would be an ideal number and an efficient critical mass on the transport and cultural event sides.

I don't think any event in Auckland these days wants for patronage. Last weekend had Pasifica, Kumeu Show, Round the Bays, Auckland Festival light show at the Domain, Blues at Eden Park. All of them attracted big crowds. Vector concerts are sold out. How many more people do you want at Christmas in the Park?
A month ago I went north to Tawharanui for a day at the beach. Traffic jam from Matakana to Warkworth on the way back. 5000 more people on Takapuna beach or Mission Bay on a nice day? Another million no thanks.

Well thankfully, not everybody on this planet is in awe of NZ and thus itching to move here, or raving about it once here. The opinions of foreigners who responded to Dept of Immigration roadshows and actually moved here are insightful, IMHO. Common themes seem to be;

  • Crap quality of houses
  • Low wages
  • Ridiculously expensive
  • Insanely boring
  • Insular locals only interested in drinking, rugby and child abuse, etc.

Read the comments on forums here for the inside oil Expat Exposed and here E2NZ
This post is particularly well written and humorous EscapeNZ, as is this one EscapeNZ

Fantastic - I now know why Air New Zealand is still turning a profit - riping off locals and shipping out the disgruntled.- LOL

LOL, well no country is perfect, and I think some ppl have un-realistic expectations. Reading what some of them are saying all I can say is you came here with huge blinkers, obvious mental health issues, for the wrong reasons and expected all the good points of where ever you came from to be here plus, well what ever else you imagined would be magically ready and fixed for you. 
I mean beer, its expensive and shit? coming from someone from the land of budweiser? LOL.

Don't often agree with you Steven, so I'm very happy to give credit where it's due in this case. 

And .. the apparent solution by the burghers .. is to keep expanding outward ..
Is there any evidence that the "leaders", those with their hands on the levers are even aware of what's going on .. are they aware of what their constituents concerns are? Don't seem to

What exactly is your proposal to stop population growth in Auckland?

  • Auckland based employers not allowed to accept job applications from anyone who does not already have an Auckland address?
  • Auckland house sellers not allowed to sell to anyone who does not already have an Auckland address?
  • Auckland landlords not allowed to rent to anyone who does not already have an Auckland address?
  • Auckland University not allowed to accept students who do not already have an Auckland address?
  • Border controls to check that only people who can prove an Auckland address are allowed in?  Perhaps an Auckland-specific passport?
  • A one-child policy for Auckland residents?


The current thinking seems to be
(a) intensification
(b) expanding MUL's
(c) intense opposition to upgrading and expanding the rail network
At current rates of progress, life in the fast-lane, in the big city, will be to wake up in the morning, turn on the radio, listen to the traffic updates, and if there are stuff-ups on the Northern motorway, a smash blocking the harbour bridge, the southern motorway is at a complete standstill, and the north-western motorway is at a stand-still, and the upper-harbour crossing is closed due to a petrol-tanker jack-knifed, on its side, spilling petrol everywhere

just go back to bed

Used to be that gridlock was discussed in terms of a cost to the economy but talk on that issue seems to be muted these days.

Regional planning.  Not what regional councils presently do. Regional planning in the sense that our public administrators stop thinking they need to "compete" with one another.

What then would these regional planners do?  Do they, or should they, have the power to decide who should and who should not be allowed to live and work in Auckland?  

It's panic buying because of the inflationary clobbering machine coming. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f8dSMBZ2pgw

I think that piece is several years old and there is no sign of (serious) inflation since then and little sign of any for the next year, even 2.  As Jim R said if I was wrong time and time again would you keep having me back.....well 4 years later and well yes no inflation....so bye bye.
PS seems its from 2009

Agree with Raegun,
This article by Alex Tarrant explains it all. http://www.interest.co.nz/property/59685/who-owns-all-homes-mps-own-all-homes-new-zealands-121-members-parliament-own-least-29
Huge conflct of interest.
Which MP is prepared to lose out financially for the sake of first home buyers?
Whilst this government has invested interests in property the out of control housing market will continue - foreign buyers will be encouraged regardless of where their money comes from.
The fact a Russian is the richest man in NZ says it all!
Dotcom another case in point.
In the UK more and more British folk are being pushed out of the property market causing greater resentment towards immigrants - jobs and housing.
Ironically, many of them immigrate to NZ and Australia.

Lies, Damn Lies, Statistics.
Here, we don't even have any statistics to rely on..Go figure.

-------------   王之涣《登鹳雀楼》

I don't understand this, but it is 'telling them', right ?

use google translate. pretty good stuff.
a poem describes a scenery where a poet climbed up a story in a tower in order to watch a beatiful sunset as well as a river flowing into the sea.

Not sure where you are coming from xingmowang.

-------------  歐陽修《醉翁亭記》

HERE IS THE REALITY , and we had better get used to it

  • We  have an immigration policy to get 60,000 new migrants here each year
  • We dont have enough houses for those who are here already so I dont know how we can house the newcomers 
  • Most Europeans are still better off  financially in Europe in spite of the GFC, so they are not coming
  • British migration has dried up because the pound has weakened so much they cant afford the houses in Devonport and  its not worth remitting pensions here
  • Most South Africans are now too poor to come here with their collapsing currency
  • The Aussies are better off at home thank God
  • We are left with the poor and huddled masses of India , Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afganistan clammering to get in here ....
  • AND The sharp boys from Beijing and Shanghai who will continue to run businesses in China , and will will never pay NZ tax .

Again, pause immigration for one year and see if it brings some balance back into property, employment and the exchange rate. Better still ban sales of all property to non residents at the same time. Two strokes of the pen, near instantaneous results I'm guessing.

David Hargreaves has written a wonderfully balanced and sensible piece here. 
One gets the feeling David is a hell of a lot smarter than the politician who should be reading this and taking some immediate action.  And therein lies the problem.
David please make sure the Herald publishes what you've written.  Being the owner of this masterful piece surely deep down you know you must see this through to the end.  
All New Zealanders and their children will benefit if you can be a catalyst for stopping the ugly price inflation we are only just seeing the beginnings of.

I agree - a very informative piece.

If you own a rental property in NZ with no mortgage you will be taxed on the rental income at 30% if you are in the highest tax bracket - a point Hargreaves omits.

So the best thing to do, if you are outside the NZ tax system is to set up a bogus mortgage with one of your mates and claim the interest as an expense?

It's NON RESIDENT buyers that I object to, race independant. Those who will effectively force Kiwi's to be tennants in thier own land. 
"Well, owning a home has always been central to the New Zealand psyche. And if the young people of today start to feel alienated by not being able to buy a home, then they might just up sticks and leave."
It's already started. I am one of those who have left, and very glad I did.  Why would I even consider coming to live in NZ with pathetic wages, and huge expenses for a basic need - a roof over your head.  
Want a fair go?  Go somewhere else!

Tony Alexander Media release today:
At most only 1.2% of dwelling sales in Auckland are to people living in China not planning to move to New Zealand.
The sprawling anecdotes regarding Auckland properties being snapped up by Chinese buyers are not supported by the evidence.

Do you think the whole of the outstanding share issuance of IBM trades every day on the NYSE to determine the company value? Only a small fraction of the share float trades each day.  At the margin price determination causes all the non- traded shares to be revalued.
If foreign purchasers of Auckland property wish to bid way through previous sale prices, then all the stock gets a higher valuation, deserved or otherwise. It's why they might be so aggressive and indifferent to paying significantly higher prices that demands investigation

But by all means, dont let the facts stand in the way of your ugly racism!

Dont blame the immigrants - blame the decion and policy makers (Government) Its easy to divert attention from the true cause and blame someone or something else.
This is the culmination of years of ineffective planning, and now the shit has hit the fan, we look to a scapegoat. Wake me the #@%& up.
cha cha

It's pointless on using data that has the words "planning to". What would you write on a form if you had just shelled out $1m on NZ property? 
Use the data that which tells us if they are resident in NZ or not. Anyone have access this info?

double post.  No delete button.