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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  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
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    1 day ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
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    1 day ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
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    1 day ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
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    1 day ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
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    2 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
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    2 days ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
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    2 days ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
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    2 days ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
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    2 days ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
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    2 days ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
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    2 days ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
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    3 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
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    3 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
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    3 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
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    3 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
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    3 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
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    3 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
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    3 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
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    3 days ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
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    3 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Lyttelton Parking
    Feedback sought– Lyttelton commercial zone parking  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to remove on-site car parking requirements for new developments in the Lyttelton commercial zone.  The proposal, by Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section 71 of the Greater ...
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    4 days ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Hagley Oval
    Hon Minister Poto Williams Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration   MEDIA STATEMENT       Tuesday 15 October 2019 Feedback sought – Hagley Oval The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal about Hagley Oval. The proposal was developed by Regenerate Christchurch ...
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    4 days ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
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    4 days ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
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    4 days ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
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    4 days ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
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    4 days ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
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    4 days ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
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    5 days ago
  • New trapping guide for community and expert trappers alike
    The Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage has launched a new comprehensive trapping guide for community trappers to help them protect our native birds, plants and other wildlife, at Zealandia in Wellington today. ‘A practical guide to trapping’, has been developed by the Department of Conservation (DOC), and was launched during ...
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    5 days ago
  • Widening Access to Contraceptives Welcomed
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter welcomes PHARMAC’s move to improve access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs). PHARMAC has today announced it will fund the full cost of Mirena and Jaydess for anyone seeking long term contraception, lifting previous restrictions on access to Mirena. “I welcome women having greater choices ...
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    5 days ago
  • Major upgrade for Taranaki Base Hospital
    The Government has approved the next stage of a major redevelopment of Taranaki Base Hospital, which will deliver new and improved facilities for patients. Health Minister Dr David Clark has announced details of a $300 million dollar project to build a new East Wing at the New Plymouth hospital. It ...
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    6 days ago
  • Extra support for rural families
    Extra funding will allow Rural Support Trusts to help farming families, says Minister for Rural Communities and Agriculture Damien O’Connor. “I know that rural families are worried about some of the challenges facing them, including the ongoing uncertainty created by the Mycoplasma bovis outbreak. “Those concerns sit alongside ongoing worries ...
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    1 week ago
  • Howard Leaque Beekeeper programme graduation
    Thank you for the opportunity to be here to present certificates to the 16 graduates who have completed a beekeeping course delivered by the Howard League.  Let us start by acknowledging Auckland Prison’s Deputy Prison Director Tom Sherlock, and Acting Assistant Regional Commissioner of Corrections Northern Region Scott Walker - ...
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    1 week ago
  • Finance Minister to attend APEC meetings
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson leaves this weekend to attend the APEC Finance Ministers meeting in Santiago, Chile. Discussions between APEC Finance Ministers at the meeting will include the effects of the current global economic uncertainty, risks for APEC economies and sustainable development of the region. While at APEC Grant Robertson ...
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    1 week ago
  • Pacific languages are a source of strength, they ground us and build confidence
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio says for Pacific people, language can be a source of strength. It can help ground us and give us confidence. When we speak them, our languages provide us with an immediate and intimate access to our identity and our story - and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Major boost to support disabled people in sport and recreation
    The Coalition Government has announced an action plan to improve the wellbeing of disabled New Zealanders by addressing inequalities in play, active recreation and sport. The initiative includes training to develop a workforce that understands the needs of children and young people with a range of impairments, advocacy for fit ...
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    1 week ago
  • More prefab homes to be built as red tape cut
    The construction sector is being freed up to allow more homes to be built more quickly as the Government cuts through some of the red tape of the Building Act.  “Every New Zealander deserves a warm, dry, safe home and old inefficiencies in the Building Act make building slow and ...
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    1 week ago