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Foreign buyers estimated at 29%

Written By: - Date published: 7:03 am, August 25th, 2016 - 75 comments
Categories: capital gains, Economy, housing, national, overseas investment, spin - Tags: , , , ,

Most of the media has reported the Government’s “3%” spin on the extent of residential property purchases in NZ going to foreign buyers pretty uncritically. There have been honourable exceptions, and yesterday property editor Anne Gibson in The Herald joined them:

Foreigners buying 29pc of homes, not 3pc – lawyer

Foreigners are buying 29 per cent of New Zealand residential properties, not the low 3 per cent reported in official state data, a lawyer says.

Mary Anne Shanahan, a New Lynn-based conveyancing lawyer, expressed annoyance at interpretation of Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) data which shows extremely low transaction numbers for foreigners.

At the beginning of this month, LINZ released data showing that from April 1 to June 30, overseas residents bought 1749 out of the 57,678 homes sold in New Zealand. That amounts to 3 per cent of total sales over the three-month period – a similar level to the previous quarter.

But Shanahan said people had failed to add in foreigners here on work or student visas. Those people had not been classified foreigners yet they clearly were, she said, because they are not New Zealand residents.

LINZ revealed that foreigners on work and student visas bought more than 8000 properties they intended to occupy and a further 4707 properties they did not intend to occupy. That significantly boosted the numbers of foreigners buying here to about 29 per cent, Shanahan calculated.

She blamed the media and the Government for failing to examine the data closely enough and interpret it correctly.

“The New Zealand Herald has in its editorial quoted the 3 per cent number with the indication that those of us who know the number to be higher are xenophobic. This issue needs to be raised. …

Read on for more in The Herald.

75 comments on “Foreign buyers estimated at 29%”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    Even this figure is wrong.

    The 3% figure is accounting for “tax residency” only.

    The 29% figure here is based on people having the right to live in NZ, being on a valid work or study visa. However this further question is only supposed to be answered by non-citizens, however some citizens have answered the question instead of replying n/a meaning the figures are overstated (why LINZ didn’t have enough information to simply correct this data themselves I don’t know).

    Is someone on a work visa, who intends to permanently immigrate to NZ, really a foreigner?

    • Sabine 1.1

      yes, until they have permanent residence you are considered a foreigner by any institutions in NZ, be it migration, police, winz, hospitals etc etc etc.

      I .e. i was for two years on a working visa aka a foreigner on a temporary visa.
      then i was for two years on a returning resident visa – still a temporary bisa
      then i got on my permanent visa – and bingo presto now i was a ‘permanent resident’ with a funny accent who for some still is a foreigner learning to be a kiwi.

      But fact is that if you are on a temporary visa such as a work visa / student visa the moment you leave NZ during the validity of your visa you loose that visa, and need to re-apply and you need to have your visa sorted before re-entering the country. That makes you a foreigner.

      • Craig H 1.1.1

        That’s not entirely true – holders of work visas of 2+ years duration have access to the public health system, as do any of their dependents* in NZ. Likewise, primary and secondary students who are student visa holders on the basis of being dependent children of work visa holders are considered domestic students for the purposes of funding and school enrolments.

        *dependent here means partner or children on appropriate partnership, visitor or student visas.

        Partners and dependent children of NZ residents and citizens also have the above rights if they don’t yet have residence themselves and are in NZ on temporary visas.

        NZ has some reciprocal health arrangements with Australia and the UK, so their citizens and residents may have some access while visiting here depending on the situation (mainly emergency care). ACC does not generally differentiate between different visas and the right to be in NZ, so will cover foreigners in most situations.

        Also, the Immigration Act 1987 has been replaced by the Immigration Act 2009, so a lot of the terminology has changed (permits are gone and totally replaced by visas), and how Residence Class visas work is a bit different to the old system. Resident Visas and Permanent Resident Visas are both Residence Class Visas as defined by the Immigration Act 2009, so anything that refers to permanent residence usually means a Residence Class Visa, both of which convey the right to live and work in NZ indefinitely.

        Some legislation requires that a person holds residence for a certain length of time to access some forms of support e.g. 2 years to get a benefit, 3 years to get a Student Loan. On the other hand, access to Kiwisaver, public health and subsidised tertiary fees are immediate.

        Modern visas are usually issued with multiple entries, particularly work and student visas (visitor visas can be, but that will depend on category and duration and where they were issued), so the need to reapply every time someone leaves NZ is diminished.

    • Nic the NZer 1.2

      They are not classified citizens until they apply for and complete citizenship proceedings. We don’t measure intention because expectations are often as not inaccurate and that doesn’t give you any coherent sample (peoples time period for becoming citizens would be wildly different, for example). Why muddying up a coherent term into incoherrent nonsense which makes it meaningless to examine would be an improvement is beyond my understanding.

      “Is someone on a work visa, who intends to permanently immigrate to NZ, really a foreigner?”
      In brief, yes.

      • Lanthanide 1.2.1

        Not sure why you’re talking about citizenship all of a sudden, because I didn’t mention it or suggest anything about citizenship at all.

    • mickysavage 1.3

      Not sure Lanth. The collection of the data is managed by lawyers with access to the LINZ system.

      I am looking at the screen now.

      The data is entered by answering “Yes” or “No” to the questions and by inserting the date a paper copy of the statement is signed and if necessary the NZ IRD number.

      The questions include:

      “Are you or a member of your immediate family a New Zealand citizen or a holder of either a resident, work or student visa?”

      “If you are a buyer and you or a member of your immediate family hold a work or student visa, do you or a member of your immediate family intend living on the land?

      You can then decline to provide an IRD number if, amongst other reasons, the property is going to be your main home.

      The system does not break the data down into “citizens” verses others. It only measures if you are in the country legally and this is self reported.

      So anyone here on a visitor’s permit who buys a house do not need to give their IRD number if they intend to live in it. They can buy up multiple houses if they have a NZ IRD number.

      • dukeofurl 1.3.1

        I thought one of the primary reasons for IRD numbers was to catch the speculators who flick on with days or even months later for large profits.

        But seems like a big loophole if the out is ‘going to be main home’. As speculators will always say thats their ‘intention but they changed their mind’

        Everyone should be putting in an IRD number. If it does become their main home then of course nothing will come of it.

        The whole speculators tax has become a farce of no real effect.

        • TC 1.3.1.1

          As designed by national along with tax havens to enable the flow of funds to continue the ponzi scheme they created in residential property.

          Works in tandem with uber relaxed immigration criteria, i.e. have money then come on down we dont care about your character or background.

          • reason 1.3.1.1.1

            tax haven john has set us up to be as clean as the nats 100% clean river water …

            ‘It is estimated between $1.5 billion to $10 billion of dirty cash is laundered through New Zealand every year.”…

            “Auckland’s booming market is a known target for foreign criminals and local gangs.”https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/business/one-client-purchased-100m-worth-of-property-with-cash-kiwi-estates-used-to-house-money-laundering

            “Almost $8.5 billion worth of fishy transactions were reported to authorities in the past year, as New Zealand tries to rid itself of the stench of dirty money.

            That’s enough to buy at least 5,000 houses in Remuera, or almost every one in Rotorua. …..”

            “Whether the money is funnelled through a New Zealand shell company or into the booming Auckland property market, the purpose of this laundering is simple: to disguise the profits of crime as bona fide earnings so they can be spent with impunity.” …….

            “Despite this, the Government doesn’t appear to be in any rush to widen the anti-money laundering rules as originally envisaged in the 2009 legislation, to include lawyers, accountants, real estate agents and businesses that deal in high-value goods, such as auctioneers and bullion dealers……”http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11510931

            *******************************************

            Our Sub prime prime minister is as dirty as his 100% pure water ………

            His housing market is making honest working people sick …… and puts kids in cars.

  2. Colonial Viper 2

    No foreign buying of NZ land – NZ citizens and 100% NZ owned entities only; current foreign owners of NZ land have 10 years to divest.

    Foreigners may lease NZ land for a maximum term of 20 years.

    If this became Labour policy = Labour win 2017.

    • Keith 2.1

      100% agreed. Still the foreign donations, hidden of course, will flood Nationals coffers as a result, won’t they?

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        Indeed. Once in Govt however Labour can tighten up all the rules around foreign donations and private sector lobbyists.

        And campaigning on doing just that will also be a massive vote winner for Labour.

        These are the right things to do, they would be very popular, and would win Labour the election.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      If this became Labour policy = Labour win 2017.

      QFT

      This is something that the Left and Right don’t seem to get. We don’t actually want to sell our country to foreigners. Then there’s the simple fact that we don’t need foreign money to utilise our own resources and the belief inherent in capitalism that we do is damaging our society.

    • mary_a 2.3

      @ CV (2) … BINGO!

      Agree. The way it should be. Hope Labour has the common sense to see the general benefit of introducing such a good policy for next year.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.3.1

        Hope Labour has the common sense to see the general benefit of introducing such a good policy for next year.

        They don’t. They’re still holding on to the delusional belief that foreign ownership brings benefits:

        We’ll ban offshore buyers from the market unless they are willing to build a new home and add to the stock.

        I was there when he gave that speech. He nearly got a standing ovation for the first part and then he said unless and the whole place went quite. IMO, The Labour membership do not support foreign ownership.

    • Chooky 2.4

      +100 CV…sounds sensible to me

      but are foreign students deemed NZ citizens?…and therefore able to buy up NZ land/housing for their foreign families and friends? ( in which case this must also be stopped)

    • Chch_chiquita 2.5

      If they added to that an option for NZ residents to lease land from the govt for 99 years for a reasonable one off fee; when a property is sold the new buyer pays that same fee to the govt and the lease is renewed for 99 years. This will have a massive effect on land prices and people will have money to invest in improving their properties to higher standards.

    • Observer Tokoroa 2.6

      .
      CV – I agree with You.

      . Given that ordinary New Zealanders cannot afford to buy houses now or in the future, it would make good sense for Labour to announce a policy of divestment, coupled with a sunset lease arrangement for non New Zealand born residents and parents.

      Immigration should be put on hold immediately. Speculator sales totally banned. Why? Because it has made it impossible for ordinary new Zealanders to buy houses. Or even to rent them.

      The land, the Housing, the Infra Structure belongs to New Zealanders. Not to anyone else.

      The Maori Party does not want this of course. Nor does United Future. Neither does the Act Party. The National Party has totally shunned New Zealanders. Forced thousands of NZ people into homelessness. Shunted into it by our strange Paula.

      . I like good Policy CV.

    • Infused 2.7

      It’s funny, as I suspect a lot of National voters would agree with this policy, also.

    • srylands 2.8

      No.

      A “foreigner” who buys New Zealand land has to buy New Zealand dollars to do so. The person who sells the foreigner New Zealand dollars is paid in US dollars, Australian dollars, or Euros etc.. That foreign exchange can be used by New Zealanders to buy overseas assets. New Zealand’s net asset position does not change at all.

      Then there is the balance of payments problem. More restrictive rules on purchases by foreigners of land will by necessity mean greater foreign ownership of other assets (e.g. businesses). Are you happy with that?

      The direction of reform will be one of continued liberalisation of FDI restrictions. There is no alternative.

      If you want more houses, I suggest that you lobby the Government to allow the housing market to work, and to reform urban planning rules.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.8.1

        That foreign exchange can be used by New Zealanders to buy overseas assets.

        Not necessarily. Certainly not in China.

        New Zealand’s net asset position does not change at all.

        This is another lie of the RWNJ and economists. Money is nothing after all.

        Then there is the balance of payments problem. More restrictive rules on purchases by foreigners of land will by necessity mean greater foreign ownership of other assets (e.g. businesses).

        Logical fallacy: Non-sequitur.

        After all, they could just buy more of our products instead.

        And the balance of payments should be addressed by having the exchange rate determined by the amount of trade between countries. Importing more from a country drops the NZ$ in relation to that countries currency. Profits from NZ going to another country also drops the NZ$ in relation to that countries currency.

        The direction of reform will be one of continued liberalisation of FDI restrictions. There is no alternative.

        Banning foreign ownership seems like an alternative and one that far more viable and sustainable than selling off NZ to foreign owners.

        If you want more houses, I suggest that you lobby the Government to allow the housing market to work, and to reform urban planning rules.

        They’ve been trying that for about 30 years now. Time to accept that it simply doesn’t and never will work.

    • plumington 2.9

      Sounds like Winston Peters to me (lol)

      • Ross 2.9.1

        Nah it’s Roger Douglas. Only Douglas or a Douglas sycophant would say: “There is no alternative.” There are always alternatives but a defunct economist might be too lazy to think of any.

  3. Keith 3

    You cannot trust the National Party. Wait for the cover up on contaminated drinking water next.

    Nick Smith was, as per normal, thoroughly unconvincing right from the outset of this latest National Party big lie. He’s a shocker at it, but try as he might to sound outraged at those accusers of foreigners like Andrew Little, demanding apologies, it must have been bloody difficult fronting this total bullshit that anyone in the housing market knew to be false.

    Thing is who in the National Party decided on the ridiculous 3% number, was it focus grouping or was it one or some of the arrogant millionaire ministers and who thought that such a ridiculous lie or any lying from the government was acceptable to the NZ public.

    This latest lie designed to cover up what National always knew, that foreign speculators are doing great harm to genuine NZ citizens aspirations to buy a home, raises the question, why do National represent foreign speculators rather than Zealanders?

    • Ad 3.1

      +1

      And they will get caught out.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      why do National represent foreign speculators rather than Zealanders?

      National are authoritarian and one aspect of authoritarians is that they kowtow to people who they think are richer and more powerful than they are. In this case, rich foreigners.

      Of course, they also think that NZ is small and insignificant and thus incapable of doing anything without being told how to do it by rich foreigners.

      • Wensleydale 3.2.1

        True. The only way to climb the greasy pole is by shameless brown-nosing, and National are masters at it. Anyone below you on the aforementioned pole, gets a size 9 to the face because they’re of no use to you in advancing your agenda.

      • Righty right 3.2.2

        Because there greedy selfish pack of traitors the whole rotten lot total scum of the earth and we need to removed asap

      • Mmmm, the closest thing we have to authoritarians in Parliament right now are New Zealand First. (That’s not to say that almost all parties don’t support the occassional authoritarian bill, like say Labour with the GCSB bill) ACT has gone back to largely being libertarians again now that Rodney Hide and Banks are gone, and while libertarians are terrible, about the one thing you can say for them is that they’re generally not authoritarians. National is at war between the classical Liberals that represent the current leadership and the Conservatives that are represented by, for example, Judith Collins.

        That said, it is correct to view National as corporatists first. That’s really the one thing the entire party agrees most of the time, it’s very rarely that they don’t toe the corporate line, and when they don’t it’s usually because they have a donor or constituency they can’t afford to lose. In fact, I think it’s the fact that National are corporatists that really explains why they’re so keen on unfettered international investment regardless of the consequences.

        The authoritarian tendencies of some of their core voters doesn’t have much to do with it.

        • Draco T Bastard 3.2.3.1

          Mmmm, the closest thing we have to authoritarians in Parliament right now are New Zealand First.

          National, Act and NZ1st are much of a muchness for authoritarianism. The difference is that NZ1st is centrist and National and Act are radical right-wing.

          ACT has gone back to largely being libertarians

          Scratch a libertarian and you will find an authoritarian. It’s in their delusional belief about property rights over-riding all other rights.

    • mary_a 3.3

      @ Keith (3) An excellent post. You conclude with the following relevant statement ….

      “This latest lie designed to cover up what National always knew, that foreign speculators are doing great harm to genuine NZ citizens aspirations to buy a home, raises the question, why do National represent foreign speculators rather than Zealanders?”

      Because this National government is a bunch of unmitigated, corrupt traitors! They are selling us out piece by piece, for as much as they can get! It’s called treason. Wealthy foreigners of a particular ethnicity are undoubtedly buying favours with government ministers I’d say!

  4. ianmac 4

    I can hear it now from Key, “Mary Anne Shanahan, a New Lynn-based conveyancing lawyer can give her opinion but I can find more credible experts who will disagree with her. She is probably one of those silly Green supporters who live in cuckoo land.”

    Be interesting how the Nats refute this. Well done Mary.

  5. Michelle 5

    Yes Keith agree we cant trust National they are so devious they are preparing to do major cover ups before the next election in housing, education, employment, health all these stats will be manipulated and massaged to show their policies have been successful when in fact the opposite has occurred.
    But we are not stupid we can see our country going down the toilet no matter how good the stats look.

    • Keith 5.1

      We lost over half a percent from the unemployed stats through very creative means and not a single unemployed person of that half percent got a job. It’s just like magic!

  6. save nz 6

    All I can say if that 2 – 3 years ago in Auckland you could buy a CBD studio apartment for under $200,000 and a 3 bedroom freehold house for $350,000 – $400,000. So the same people on student visas and ‘intending’ to migrate here, are competing for those same properties at the lower end of the market.

    There are also insane situations of places in Henderson that got sold 3 times in the same year and increased $70,000 each time, even though no work was done and they were often not even lived in. We actually do have a capital gains tax as well as the speculator tax in place and why IRD did not act is not clear.

    There should also be investigations into money laundering as some cultures have organised gangs, who could be using these students to buy properties on their behalf.

    The government need to stop foreign students and workers getting work visas and being able to buy a property here. Not until someone has permanent residency should they be able to buy a house and even then it should be closely monitored for third party money laundering.

    Immigration needs a big clean up. New migrants should also be targeted for tax checks to make sure they are aware of their tax obligations. IRD loves to target beneficiaries and ‘tradies’ for fraud, but what about the people who don’t speak english how the hell are they supposed to know their obligations and what happens if nobody is checking?

    Kiwis are being scammed.

    For 53% of homeless families in NZ, this is not just some paper issue, it is destroying their lives. Wasn’t WINZ going on about how they need more 1 and 2 bedroom state houses and there was not demand for family houses which is why they are selling them to Australian and Chinese billionaires?

    Everything National say, is a manipulated lie.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.1

      Not until someone has permanent residency should they be able to buy a house

      Nope, shouldn’t be able to buy a house until they become a citizen.

      Everything National say, is a manipulated lie.

      QFT

      National has to lie because reality doesn’t match their ideological delusions.

      • Henry Filth 6.1.1

        And non-resident citizens?

        • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1.1

          If they’re not living in NZ then they also should not be able to own houses/businesses in NZ.

          • Stuart Munro 6.1.1.1.1

            Having worked abroad (and sadly not owned property at the time) I don’t think citizens should be forced to divest a single property. Plenty of folk I know took positions abroad to maintain a mortgage after NZ employment proved too volatile. If you could stabilise employment first it might be a different story.

            • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1.1.1.1

              I don’t think citizens should be forced to divest a single property.

              Why not?

              Offshore people owning resources in NZ is decreasing the resources available to NZers and thus causing poverty.

              • AmaKiwi

                +1

                Yes, forced divestiture for certain. Without that threat the land grab will only get worse.

              • Stuart Munro

                Why not? Because if I flee the Key failconomy to get a job so I don’t lose my house (and this is the only reason I’m leaving) you’ve just fucked me.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Well, two things:

                  1. It would be your choice to leave knowing the rules
                  2. There would be some sort of timing to allow people to go on holidays and sabbaticals.

          • Henry Filth 6.1.1.1.2

            Thought you might say that. But best to check.

        • save nz 6.1.1.2

          Maybe non residents can own them once resident for 10 years for 10 years overseas or something like that. That way, NZ born citizens who might go overseas for work experience but still regard NZ as their birth place and place they will return to can buy, but those who just hop into NZ to buy a property as an investment and then don’t come back to live, can’t own here.

    • Craig H 6.2

      IRD doesn’t particularly target beneficiaries for anything, because for one thing, most of them are eligible for write-off of tax debt under hardship provisions in the Tax Administration Act 1994, so it would be work followed by writing off the debt, which is totally unproductive. IRD regularly writes off tax debt (including working for families debts) for beneficiaries, particularly around July/August after the Personal Tax Summaries are issued and IR3s received.

      A sizeable reason for targeting tradies and small hospo/retail is so that people who actually follow the rules are not being undercut by people who don’t.

      New migrants on work visas (and student visas with work rights) are given information with their visa approval letters about IRD and the need to obtain an IRD number and pay tax, and also the Labour Inspectorate and minimum employment provisions, and Immigration NZ also has resources in many foreign languages as well.

  7. Chch_chiquita 7

    “She blamed the media and the Government for failing to examine the data closely enough and interpret it correctly.”
    The govt never had any intention to examine the data closely nor to interpret it correctly. It suits their purpose and help them keep on lying and be believed by those who choose not to see.

    • Gangnam Style 7.1

      “She blamed the media … for failing to examine the data closely enough and interpret it correctly.” – Was telling for me, our media is so shallow, they are in a trance like cult believers.

  8. Reddelusion 8

    Even I agree with you guys here, 3pc is a nonsense

    • One Anonymous Bloke 8.1

      Yeah, but you’d rather have a government that lies to you than one you disagree with, so you’ll get over it.

  9. keith ross 9

    Keith’s wife. We were recently in the market. Buying a home with $10% down is near to impossible, eliminating many working kiwis from home ownership. At 10%, you may not buy a fixer-uper. It must be in perfect nic. I’m not even mentioning the endless paperwork, hoops that make it feel absolutely impossible. With some help, we raised our deposit to 20%, and all obstacles disappeared.

    The market is set up to sell to the wealthy, kiwis and overseas buyers. The gov’t wants to keep it that way, as they personally have many real estate investments. The average kiwi (for instance, my children’s teacher) just doesn’t have enough money to qualify! This is so wrong. She is the backbone of our society–teaching our children.

    I am not racist, by any means. I do not want to see kiwis sending rent checks enmasse to China and the US! Also, our kiwi grown food, on farms owned by aliens, is being sent overseas, with little contribution to the nation’s economics. We need taxes on second homes, more taxes on third homes, etc… Also, we must protect our land from being annexed by another country. Above all, we must protect the renewable resource or our farm land! I am an immigrant, my husband grew up here, I think my views are fair and in no way racist!

    • Lanthanide 9.1

      “At 10%, you may not buy a fixer-uper. It must be in perfect nic.”

      That’s pretty perverse. One of the problems with buying houses is that they’re “not productive assets”.

      But actually buying a house that is a fixer-upper, and then fixing it up and adding value, actually *is* a (somewhat) productive use of money. Much more so than bidding up the price of an already built house by $200k.

    • b waghorn 9.2

      Raising the deposit needed is all about protecting the banks , that’s all it’s achieved.

    • save nz 9.3

      +1 Keith Ross. Also with apartments for many years you needed a 30% deposit from banks which made them out of reach for first home buyers. Everything on the bank side is stacked against buyers with low deposits, and also the banks want never ending reports which stops poorer people being able to buy cheaper houses, which might have something that needs fixing in the building reports. Not to mention crazy stuff, like hard to get insurance for houses built before 1945 or that are in a historic zone (i.e. a villa). It’s a bloodbath out there and if you are a cash buyer with plenty of money those issues, just disappear. It is not an even playing field.

  10. DH 10

    Even the 29% is wrong, it would likely be higher than that. The report makes interesting reading for it’s language and discussion by the author(s). Can download it here;

    http://www.linz.govt.nz/system/files_force/media/doc/prs_property-transfers-tax-residency_report_2016_apr-jun.pdf

    It needs to be understood the report is not about the sale of properties. It’s about the transfer of property titles, of which many are not actual sales.

    The intro makes it clear;

    “Not just selling and buying property

    These statistics show property transfers. Transfers include buying and selling property, but also property that is transferred without a sale, for example, changes of trustee.

    The way these statistics are collected means we can’t distinguish between sales and transfers, or between individuals and trusts.”

    And…

    “We estimate that approximately half of transfers involve a residential sale.”

    All of the percentages quoted are calculated from the total and not the half or whatever portion makes up actual sales. That makes the data pretty much completely useless.

  11. mary_a 11

    It’s a miserable day here in Auckland. So husband and I decided to attend a property auction, just out of interest. We were neither bidders, nor vendors.

    Any Kiwi first home buyers would have been extremely disillusioned, because about 7/8 of attendees were of Asian extraction, communicating in their own language, obviously wealthy, bidding frantically, causing unrealistic exorbitant property prices to be reached! We witnessed what seemed to be a buy up of multiple properties by these bidders. We couldn’t believe it!

    Must be quite heartbreaking for Kiwi families, to realize they simply don’t stand a chance against this uncontrolled tide of foreign/non NZ citizen buying up property, for the sole purpose of making a hefty profit for themselves.

    Very few of the bidders seemed like NZers having returned from overseas, as constantly stated by John Key and Nick Smith! That is BS!

    Time to take the foreign/non citizen ownership of land seriously and give ordinary Kiwi families a chance to get a foot on the ladder of home ownership. Legislate and ban foreigners/non citizens (from any country) from owning property in NZ!

    Today’s experience for us was indeed an eye opener, seeing events first hand!

    • save nz 11.1

      +1 Mary_a. Nothing like seeing things for your own eyes.

      • mikes 11.1.1

        Yep. Anyone who wants proof should go to B@T’s weekly auction held every Tuesday at the greyhound racing track which is at the Manukau Sports Bowl. Call me racist or xenophobic as much as you like, it doesn’t change the facts.

    • ianmac 11.2

      Handy to have real life report thanks Mary. I imagine that the buyers would think it hilarious to be able to scoop up what must be real bargains “relatively” thinking. And perhaps they despise those Kiwi peasants.

    • Paul 11.3

      Have witnessed the same.

    • “Asian” isn’t a language. “Unrealistic prices” is an oxymoron – as the capitalists love to point out, the monetary value of a thing is precisely how much people are willing to pay for it.

      Many “Asian” people who speak “Asian” languages amongst themselves are members of Kiwi families. Many of them are even “ordinary”.

      I’m not at all enchanted with this kind of “I saw a bunch of Asians! Right there in public! Buying things with their Asian money!!!!” ancedata. It’s entirely possible to have a conversation about house prices (which would be inflated anyway because of *domestic* speculators) without blowing hard on the dogwhistle of racism.

      • Anne 11.4.1

        I’m not at all enchanted with this kind of “I saw a bunch of Asians! Right there in public! Buying things with their Asian money!!!!” ancedata… etc. etc.

        Get off your high horse Stephanie Rodgers! mary_a said no such thing in the manner you have inferred. I’ve followed her both here and at the Daily Blog and she has a good down to earth commonsense take on things.

        For someone who appears to have set herself up as a women’s role model… you do a grand job alienating some of us.

  12. AmaKiwi 12

    We will always lose the argument if we let our opponents define the question. That’s what’s happening here.

    The percent is irrelevant. This country belongs to us, the citizens. The citizens ALONE should decide this issue.

    Draw up a proposal. Put it to a binding referendum. End of question. If at some future date the citizens want to re-visit this question, put it to another referendum.

    That is democracy.

    A few dozen people sitting in a horseshoe shaped room in Wellington who got their jobs with bribes from foreigners, corporations, and trusts should be irrelevant. This country does NOT belong to them. It belongs to us, the citizens. Tell your MP. Don’t take “no” for an answer.

  13. Paul 13

    Attending an auction at Barfoots is one indicator of who is buying Auckland’s property.

    • whispering kate 13.1

      You don’t need a Barfoot Auction room, you just need to attend street auctions in areas that Chinese love to live in – its a no brainer, slowly one house by one house our street has become an annex of China, they are polite neighbours, quiet and friendly but they are not deserving Kiwi families who are living in these houses. The house next door looks like its going to be a ghost house, not lived in and a homeless family would just love to be able to move in. This Government is lying through its teeth about the housing stats for Auckland. The Chinese realtors are just rolling in it from all the commission they are getting. This is from seeing is believing.

      • Paul 13.1.1

        And the National and ACT parties are literally and metaphorically married to large Chinese money.
        Corrupt?
        New Zealand?

  14. johnm 14

    Another total NZ FU! That’s what you get with money is God and a money trader PM. I surrender, I’m defeated. Let me out of here for Fucks sake!

    • Paul 14.1

      Yes, New Zealand may be a beautiful country physically and have a lovely climate.
      However it’s political set up is very ugly. I’d be struggling to think of a country where the neoliberal poison has affected a people more than these blighted isles.

  15. dave 15

    what makes it worse is those buyers have access to unlimited capital at zero percent.money the average new zealander on the meager wages hasn’t got a chance and if you do manage to get one you have borrowed so much money you will never be able to pay the loan back given the precarious nature of work foreclosure is a real possibility at some point. and government is opening up kiwi saver funds to confiscation in the event of loan default .http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/opinion-analysis/83228941
    dirty money has caused new zealanders to buy homes at ridiculous asset to income ratios building up a debt bomb. the banks are getting ready for the bust kiwi saver open up for seizure and the open bank resolution policy all in place ready to go.
    the whole situation stinks we have every right to angry
    secure retirement gone house gone greedy wankers who caused this mess including JFK gone ,welcome to the brighter future

  16. Paul 16

    Look who is driving the really expensive Audis.

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  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
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    1 day ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
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    1 day ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
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    1 day ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
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    2 days ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
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    5 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
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    5 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
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    5 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
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    6 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
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    6 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
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    6 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
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    6 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
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    6 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
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    7 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
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    7 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
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    1 week ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
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    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
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    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
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    1 week ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
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    1 week ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago