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Housing affordability data suppressed?

Written By: - Date published: 7:02 am, April 22nd, 2017 - 83 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, accountability, housing, national, useless - Tags: , , , , ,

There are apparently no depths to which the Nats will not stoop to try and deny the housing crisis (good work by Henry Cooke here):

MBIE worried ministers won’t like their long-overdue housing affordability measure

A new Government measure of housing affordability is more than a year late, and officials are worried ministers might not like what they see.

Cabinet first asked the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) and Statistics New Zealand to create the Housing Affordability Measure (HAM) in 2012, filling a gap in official government statistics. The measure will show whether housing is unaffordable for both renters and first home buyers in specific areas and at specific income bands all across the country.

It is now long-overdue. The suite was meant to be released in 2015, then 2016, then February of 2017. It remains unclear whether it will make it out before the election, with officials noting its political sensitivity and the possibility that ministers would “disagree” with the measure.

Currently the Government lacks a proper housing affordability measure. This leaves the media and academia relying on third party data, and allowed Prime Minister John Key to point journalists to a handful of cheap Trade Me listings when asked about the housing crisis last year – there were no official numbers to rebut him with. …

So are the MBIE officials just terrified of embarrassing their masters, or is there more to it?

Labour say Nick Smith ‘probably’ suppressing housing data

Labour’s Phil Twyford says the Government is probably trying to bury embarrassing data in their long-delayed Housing Affordability Measure, as calls grow for the project to be released.

The Housing Affordability Measure (HAM) was commissioned by Cabinet in 2012 but still has yet to see the light of day, despite a planned release in 2015, 2016, then February 2017.

Documents released to Stuff under the Official Information Act revealed Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) officials were worried about a possible lack of “minsterial agreement” with the measures. …

Stay on the case Labour. We the people deserve the truth in time for the election.

83 comments on “Housing affordability data suppressed?”

  1. red-blooded 1

    Perhaps if we close our eyes or turn our backs the housing crisis will just go away? That seems to be National’s plan (or as close to a plan as they’re going to get, anyway).

    • R-B. I’m sure they will have some distraction/diversion or similar on their back burner ready to be wheeled out by their compliant msm puppets.

    • saveNZ 1.2

      What a strategy though, get rid of voters who are less likely to vote National by making many cities too expensive to live in (rent or buy) for poorer people – especially Auckland!

      I’ve see quite a few who used to vote Labour move out of Auckland in the last 6 years. There’s been a cultural and political shift.

      The other issue is the fake ‘overseas’ date collected by the government that ‘claims’ only 3% is foreign owned. Then we find out that many who have just arrived in the country are excluded from that criteria.

      The other big thing I noticed was that up to 2.5 years ago in Auckland you could still buy an affordable house (even though the media said otherwise), because you could still get a studio apartment for $200,000 or a 3 bedroom starter home for $300,000.

      Suddenly it went crazy in that cheaper category (steep rise of migration, the offshore tax haven changes), and all those cheaper houses almost doubled in 2 years. I was looking around that time for a family member that was on minimum wages and they could have got something in their price range, but now the same house is almost double.

      Also due the price routing on building a house (where developers get corporate welfare and perks but if you are building a family home you are put through every rip off possible) it is still more expensive to build in most cases than own.

      Building in NZ is like swimming in a river full of sharks, very risky and little regulation in the industry. Far from lowering the costs with cheap offshore construction labour, it’s done the opposite, the labour prices are more but the labour is less skilled and needs to be redone – a lot, with all the remedial work it just takes so much longer to build! If the government wanted to get immigrants for construction they could look in places like Germany where the standards are high – but nope – they just don’t care – in fact going to places known for dodgy standards of construction and corruption.

      With all the work around builders are choosy and just put a few dimwits on jobs to charge out while doing not a lot. Not to mention dodgy concrete, building materials and so forth.

      To build it probably costs $150k just to put the infrastructure in, power, phone, earthworks, drive, council consents on a low cost home. Then there is the price of the actual house itself on top of that, renting costs while waiting for the build and then the land cost. Even if you got the land for free, it probably costs $300k just to put on a basic low cost starter house. Add on $450+K for the land and you are at $750k which is what it now costs to buy the same house that 2.5 years ago cost $350k!

      All the so called government deregulation to ‘free up more land’, did the opposite – house companies moved in, bought up the sections in places like Kumeu in Auckland that was the SHA area and then now charge $1,000,000! On top of this the government decreased local’s quality of life, because there is so much additional traffic in that area and no public transport!

      Before the government interfered you could get a place in the same area for half that and traffic was modest.

      Everything the government does in construction or transport is wrong. It drives up costs and lowers quality!

      I think Labour/Greens don’t understand the construction issues either, picking their ideas up from lobby groups and National propaganda, but things were better under a Labour led government and but nobody can be worse that what the Natz have done on housing and making it like swimming in sea of dangerous predators!

      • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1


      • RedLogix 1.2.2

        On the nail saveNZ.

        There are many contributing factors to this housing crisis. But the root causes can almost always be tracked back to a succession of National Party decisions that have skewed the game in favour of some of their best mates.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.3

      National are seeing rich people getting richer through housing speculation. They themselves are probably participating heavily. Thus they probably don’t want the housing bubble to come to an end.

      And then, of course, there’s all those people feeling rich because their house value has gone up tremendously that they don’t want to piss off.

      • BM 1.3.1

        They themselves are probably participating heavily. Thus they probably don’t want the housing bubble to come to an end.

        The property market is well and truly overcooked this is not a good time to buy, the smarter investor has now exited the market and is waiting for a correction.

        • saveNZ

          Yes but what if your reason for buying is a family home – you want somewhere to live. Do you camp out in hotels for years (as there are few rentals), waiting for the ‘correction’?

          • BM

            If you can afford to buy a home and you intend to stay there a long time and aren’t worried about being up to your eyeballs in debt for the next 30 years then buy a home.

            If that’s not the case either continue renting or move to a place where the debt to earnings ratio is a bit more manageable.

            That’s really the two only options.

            • RedLogix

              Yes. But these days most jobs aren’t stable for 30 years. And every time you’re forced to sell, buy and refinance in such a volatile market you run the risk of losing a lot of money.

              The one that really pisses me off is the way the banks force you to start a new mortgage each time you move. And every new mortgage forces you back to the top of the interest table. 30 years later and you’re still no closer to paying the damn thing off. That’s a massive scam few people think about.

              People really need to start thinking strategically about mortgages in terms of total interest paid over a lifetime.

              • BM

                I agree.

                If you look at a 30 year mortgage you’ve barely scratched the principal side of the mortgage at year 15.

                • dv

                  And the difficulty you might have is house being worth less than the mortgage.
                  Banks don’t like that.

                • RedLogix

                  I sometimes wonder if an RB rule that limited the maximum term of a table mortgage to say 15 years might not have a useful effect. I can see the downside in that it would push repayments higher, but in turn this might constrain interest rates to what the market could afford.

                  • Ad

                    That would put ownership through the floor even faster.

                    I think it would be better if mortgages were routinely tabled to complete well after the death of the debtor, so that taking on a mortgage required the common liability of two generations: the parents and the children.

                    The use of this is:

                    – First it would encourage parents and children to have explicit and managed conversations about how to build intergenerational wealth.

                    – Secondly real estate becomes no longer a simple exercise in waiting for your parents to die.

                    – Thirdly banks get to spread their risk over more earners, and over a longer time

                    – And finally the banks gain really, really loyal customers for 50+ years, rather than the market encouraging really fast churn on the interest rate margins.

                    • Carolyn_nth

                      And those of us without children?

                      And others wanting a house before they have children?

                      And what happens when there are 3 adult children/siblings, all living in different places?

                    • RedLogix

                      I might accept your suggestion if you also allowed the interest paid to be tax deductable on domestic home loans.That measure alone would go a long way towards evening up the playing field between home owners and investors.

                      Also what Carol said.

                    • Ad

                      Wouldn’t work for everyone.

                      I can imagine however that 90% of those who now try to buy a house on their own before having kids, can’t.

                      My small idea is simply an extension of what usually happens now: parents loaning or donating whole deposits off their own houses, or going co-guarantor.

                      Intergenerational tax deductibility would be an excellent idea as well.

                    • Carolyn_nth

                      As someone without children, I don’t really see any necessity to own property – as long as rents are affordable, and tenancy agreements are fair to tenants.

                      To me there is way to much social and financial pressure on owning property. Renting throughout one’s life should be an easily accessible option.

                      And there are increasing numbers of childless households, and also quite a few single person households. The idea of a family home is generally really only a concern for a portion of parents’ lives.

                • Gavin

                  We’ve always used reducing loans, rather than table loans. The banks don’t mention them, but you pay the same capital amount with each payment. So over time, the repayments get cheaper, and you’ve paid off more capital earlier, so you pay less interest. It has quite a big effect. Good if you’re doing well at the start, but will have added costs like children later. That’s the key word: a reducing loan.

              • Draco T Bastard

                People really need to start thinking strategically about mortgages in terms of total interest paid over a lifetime.

                Actually, people really need to start thinking if home ownership is even viable if we want a sustainable economy. It’s allowing home ownership that allows the speculation and rentier capitalism that we see now and it’s those that are destroying our economy and our society along with it.

                • greywarshark

                  It’s allowing home ownership to be a fishing net that catches even the smallest fish that is the problem. Being able to start out in a two bedroom house with sunporch after saving a small deposit, would have avoided most of our housing pressures today. Nothing wrong with getting something for yourself when it is an achievable price and goal.

        • Johan

          Bullshit, buy yourself a do-up motel and catch all the people who would normally be in Housing NZ homes.

        • RedLogix

          I have to support BM on this. As a modest long-term investor myself I absolutely hate this speculative over-cooked market. It’s fine if you’ve got suitcases of cash you don’t mind gambling with, but for ordinary people who don’t have millions of dollars to put at risk it’s madness. It completely burns off any opportunity to add real value.

          My partner once said, “any fool can make money, it’s keeping it that’s the hard part”.

          • Carolyn_nth

            Yep – take the profiteering out of housing, which is an essential need for all.

        • AsleepWhileWalking

          Well it’s definitely not a good time to rent either.

          • saveNZ

            Ok then, I think we have ascertained it is not a good time to be a renter, home buyer or investor without suitcases of cash – so I guess the market is held up by investors with suitcases of cash – in some cases…literally suitcases of cash.

            • Whispering Kate

              I don’t understand SaveNZ how these purchasers can get away with buying homes/cars with wads of cash. I thought that the seller and the banks would have to notify the IRD if a purchaser or seller was using straight cash. Recently a massive huge drug haul netted 1.something million cash found in numerous expensive cars in lockers which was seized along with expensive housing.

              I thought I had read recently that there were new laws now that the banks had to notify either IRD or customs if deposits were made over a certain amount. It sounds pretty dodgy when people literally do make purchases with suitcases of cash to car dealers – who’s breaking the law here – everybody it seems is in on the rort these days. It can’t be cash which has been earned honestly in this country – its either coming in from overseas, made in the high roller’s lounge at the casino or the proceeds of drug sales.

              • RedLogix


                An old mate of mine is a lawyer. He assures me that a big fraction of the money you see ‘rich’ people through around was not earned in a manner that you or I would regard as honest.

                There are of course exceptional individuals who really do create new wealth. Usually they pay their taxes and play by the social contract. I don’t hold any agenda against them.

                But there are indeed many, many shades of gray out there, and I believe a fair chunk of what we see happening in our housing market is essentially money laundering.

                • Ad

                  Although a successful tax and will lawyer would be pretty motivated to say that wealth generation requires skills like theirs to work around the law.

                  • RedLogix

                    Which is why the best structured taxes are simple, universal and treat all cases equally. That way you minimise the opportunity to ‘work around the law’.

                    This is one of Gareth Morgan’s key arguments. The Big Kahuna is about much more than just a UBI.

                    • Ad

                      Is any party currently in Parliament in New Zealand or Australia proposing a “big kahuna” regime?

                    • RedLogix

                      Well if there was I’d vote for it. Even against my immediate personal interests.

                  • greywarshark

                    I don’t know why you disdain the comment, perhaps because you don’t like lawyers Ad. If Red Logix thought his friend, the lawyer, was worth listening to then he probably is, despite any business advantages coming from the situation.

              • saveNZ

                Firstly there are plenty of ‘lawyers’ out there like John Key’s personal lawyer (who is not even registered as a lawyer), who seems to be benefiting from the 0% tax haven offshore trust law and acting for people who don’t even have to identify who they really are on the trusts.

                Apparently one of the many using our trusts might be an Indonesian billionaire laundering palm oil devastation profits and not paying taxes in his home (poor) country.

                Secondly there is obviously money and gangs coming in from offshore like the Triads. Now I’m sure they can just pressure overseas students, lawyers and who ever to do their bidding. So if they want students to buy houses for them and lawyers to do the paperwork I’m sure they can force people to do it. No doubt they are trying to infiltrate the police force too and get the corruption that other countries have in their police forces.

                Then there is the average person coming here, who can’t speak much english. So they first thing they do is to buy housing. They don’t understand how to pay taxes, nor can they even read what they are supposed to do. There should be regular audits on those not born in this country to make sure they understand their obligations. I happen to know someone from Korea with little english who owns multiple properties, rents them out, has never paid any rental taxes, but somehow previously got a benefit and now superannuation. This is done through putting things in family members names etc. Obviously IRD seem to have little interest in following new residents up and how their million dollar assets are ‘disappearing’ into smoke.

                There’s the money laundering at Sky City made worse now they have some sort of special relationship to get quicker visas for gamblers coming in.

                It goes on and on – there are so many scams and the loopholes!

                Key seems to have got his way, we have become the ‘Switzerland’ for Asia but with less regulation.

                Bad luck to a growing number of locals who can’t afford to live here anymore.

                • saveNZ

                  Also forgot to mention it was one of John Keys, laws to make gifting 100% tax free, so that you can transfer all your assets into other people’s names and then get benefits. It used to be you could only gift $27k per year.

                  Now so much easier to put your assets in different people’s names and probably helps the Triads too get the money back if they are getting other people to launder money for them.

        • marty mars

          lol trying to pick the market eh BM – this is impossible. When ‘taxidrivers’ or blog commenters start giving investment/money advice (do they take their own advice??? ) then that is an indication that the shit is well and truly about to hit the fan – but not in the way those people think I think.

        • Draco T Bastard

          It was the ‘smart’ investors that caused the problem.

    • reason 1.4

      Key had a plan alright …….. Tax havens and speculation.

      He talked about us copying the Celtic tiger …. as Ireland and its economy was briefly descrinbed …. before the whole country went bankrupt ( a bit like his old firm and major share investments Merrill lynch )

      But even when the Irish economy was booming …. Housing was getting worse ( unaffordable ) , …. with homelessness growing. http://www.chekov.org/articles/irelands-housing-crisis

      There has been sweet stuff all smaller or affordable homes built for the less well off in New Zealand for the past 9 years…… by choice of our ‘ market’ Government

      The “market” makes more money on bigger homes for the affluent …. or those who can service $500,000 plus mortages.

      The resulting stress on the less well off …. resulting in overcrowding, homelessness … and rent induced poverty….. is predictable.

      People like key thinks its all Natural and “Social Darwinism”

      A real government and economy would have decent housing for its citizens as a core policy and basic human right … like clean water, education, health etc

      With decent policy and commitments from Labor/Greens & NZ First …..

      National should be crucified on this issue…..

  2. AB 2

    For many National supporters it’s a goldmine not a crisis. Understand that and the government’s denial and inaction make sense. It is a hugely effective way of redistributing wealth upwards, National’s ultimate purpose.

    • keepcalmcarryon 2.1

      I reckon this is more the case.
      The housing crisis is great for wealthy Auckland home owners and investors, who can see their net worth ticking upwards and will comfortably keep voting National.
      Not to mention a bunch of MPs in both major parties owning investment property and we see why the nats are quite happy with unaffordable housing and actively do not want to fix the problem. It is not in their interests to do so.

    • Bearded Git 2.2

      Exactly. 100% agree. That is why close to half the houses sold are being bought by investors-this is the real scandal.

    • Siobhan 2.3

      Because Labour supporters aren’t rubbing their hands with glee every time they look at their increased house values??
      This constant painting of National supporters and ‘The Chinese’ as being the only beneficiaries of house price debacle is ridiculous.

      Why do you think Labour Policy is stepping well clear of any hint of any changes that would clearly impact the average homeowner and landlord?. (And its not just because of Labours desire to win over soft National voters.)

      And lets face it, every time there is an article complaining about how “we sold our house for X amount to ‘The Chinese’ and next day they sold it for XXX amount”..the complaint is that someone else made the cash…NOT that the house shouldn’t be worth so much in the first place.

      • AB 2.3.1

        “Because Labour supporters aren’t rubbing their hands with glee every time they look at their increased house values??”
        Yes – many of them will be. It’s a fault-line that runs through the Labour Party and makes it very hard for them to promote truly effective policies that will bring prices down.
        National on the whole doesn’t have this internal tension – they overwhelmingly consist of property owners. That I think was my point.

  3. Labour’s claim is that Nick Smith hopes we all won’t notice the housing unaffordability problem if he just prevents his officials reporting on it and keeps a supply of “kids with rich parents can still buy houses” stories popping up in the media? That’s ridiculous! Oh wait, Nick Smith – yeah, actually that’s entirely credible.

  4. Draco T Bastard 4

  5. saveNZ 5

    The other big screw up of the Natz is the RMA, unitary plan changes and the councils willingness to grant every consent, which makes it virtually impossible to stop any development even if it is well outside of the rules.

    This means construction or even buying has become risky. A case is the apartment owners in the CBD having their views blocked by a proposed luxury hotel that has been proposed twice the height of the maximum limit.

    Everything has been artificially altered to help the ‘economy’, in this case, rich developers and rich tourists who will clearly be deemed much more important than those existing in the community working and paying rates in the city under the eyes of the officials.

    View loss or economic losses are not valid as reasons for stopping a development so the only thing is public opinion and getting in their early in the media which may self modify the proposal.

    I’ve had friends try to stop ecological areas from development and the developers just know to keep going until their rivals run out of money. In one case the developer lost in environment court, only to return with an even bigger proposal to say Fuck you. He got it through because the community were out of money and so disheartened by the process they could not keep fighting. The mean, bloody minded and the greedy are most advantaged by current laws.

    There seems no mechanism under our laws to protect either the environment or other people’s rights. It’s all about power to the most greedy and unreasonable and those that can massage the councils egos.

    Under those circumstances nobody wants to build anymore. Deregulation does not work at all.

    Soon we will all be paying for the damages those dodgy resource consents which should never have been approved in the first place. Just like leaky building 2.0.

    But even worse is the loss of amenity and natural environment which can not be bought back as well as the mental losses from having your home and community in limbo for years if you get caught up in someone’s “big idea” of “progress’ outside of the rules – and they will win in the end.

    The system is designed to increase inequality and take from the community and put into private hands.

    • greywarshark 5.1

      The difficulties that ordinary householders face when trying to make improvements to their homes is another reason that housing stock is declining or in poor condition.
      My relatives in South Auckland says that they cannot get the Council to state what its conditions and demands are definitely, they want to keep it fluid, charge large fees for consultations and then introduce new measures at will. There is a problem with a fixed width pavement with kerbing and channelling having to be put in on a country road in front of each property. It protrudes into a fairly narrow road so is a hazard, there are few pedestrians anyway, it is suitable for a planned subdivision but ad hoc is strange.

      Then there is a rest home that has to put a new sewerage line in so that it can expand. They are doing this at their own expense, but Council has not come to the party to ensure that the pipe being installed is big enough to handle the future buildings along the road. It appears that the pipe will be the private responsibility of the rest home which is unwise. Why Council can’t give them rate relief for doing the installation and at the same time pay for a bigger pipe I don’t know. It appears that the constant harrying and the neo liberal agenda that everyone operates under has affected the ability of Auckland to run its affairs practically and effectively for its ratepayers.

      I think that NZ might have to think about going back to regional management as they did in early colonial days. The intoxication of international deals and strutting on the world stage instead of being shrewd quiet people from a little country performing within Peter’s Principle, has gone toxic on us. Let’s get the national matters down to a few and we decide on our own areas instead of them collecting taxes from all over, dipping in themselves, and giving gifts to their favourite schemes, sectors and areas.

      • saveNZ 5.1.1

        @greywarshark – exactly they make it hard for the little guy who has to have the same amount of compliance for small things than those who are totally outside the rules.

        NZ has the worst system possible, you get sued by council if you put a yurt on your property but somehow business can steal 1 km of public harbour without a resource consent.

        The rules are designed to plunder, not to actually help. This is done through loopholes that ‘experts’ deploy to bamboozle the council who are only too happy to have the paperwork massaged for them and real issues buried amongst the 70 page reports.

        Even if a developer or expert is caught out lying, no problem they just get away with it. In fact the council goes out of their way to help the liars and to conceal that they lied, any lies are hidden from environment court. Council are exempt from incompetence in the planning states. But somehow the council can get sued later if the development fails such as leaky building. The system makes zero sense from a functioning society point of view.

        The level of ‘experts’ is also meaningless.

        CTV building and Pike river are two places where consents should not have happened but did. Innocent people died horribly, but nobody is held accountable.

        If you have a real problem that you inadvertently let the council know of (instead of wisely covering it up) that requires a genuine and practical solution screw you, the council does not have the brain power nor aptitude to deal with it. Your consent will stop and go into limbo.

        Paperwork, networking and revenue gathering is king at the council. Not results. Let alone no long term examination of results and subsequent revisions and changes of the bad results to rectify the situation.

    • NZJester 5.2

      I don’t see owners in the CBD having their views blocked by a proposed luxury hotel as a problem. However, that maximum limit would be there for safety reasons. Once you get over a certain height, tackling a fire and evacuating people gets increasingly more dangerous for every extra floor added.

      • saveNZ 5.2.1

        Well how about if a young couple bought the apartment, have a huge mortgage on it and now it’s devalued below the cost of their mortgage.

        They they lose their job and have to relocate, only no one will buy their apartment because they have this issue hanging over it.

        The bank forecloses, it goes for less than mortgage and they bank can go after the couple all their lives for the rest.

        They are ruined financially.

        But don’t worry, the offshore luxury hotels make a big profit that is probably taxed outside NZ, and the luxury tourists who of course should not pay a tourist tax like other countries – it should be paid for by local residents through their rates!

        Wonder why inequality is increasing?

  6. AsleepWhileWalking 6

    My prediction for 2017/8 is that another GFC will hit. Parliament will sit under urgency and pass legislation to end all accommodation supplements.

    They will have to do this and a number of other measures to avoid pulling the country into a depression.

    If you receive a supplement of any kind including social housing you should consider what you will do when this occurs.

    **Prepare by getting as independent of the system as you can, while it is easier to do so**

    • saveNZ 6.1

      Nope, if there is a GFC, our government will just open the gates and say ‘buy us cheap’ – ‘free citizenship for the family included”.

      Otherwise known as lazy immigration.

      It won’t help locals buying as the banks stop all lending so only the cashed up and rich do well. The middle class and poor get poorer and the super rich get richer.

    • greg 6.2

      if another gfc hit there is very little anyone can do. the level debt in NZ will wreak havoc on the economy/society NZ has a fire economy that depends on ever increasing debt
      when credit stops we are screwed national has done sweet fuck all to brake the addiction to credit. all bubbles pop

  7. Incognito 7

    National is HAMstrung by its own measure. Oh, the irony!

    They just haven’t figured out a way to spin the data; after all, if you can measure it, you can manage it. Maybe John Key took the CT contract with him, who knows?

    It does put National’s reluctance to measure child poverty in a new light, doesn’t it?

    They are the Masters of Measure (MoMs) and Deniers and Deceivers (DaDs).

  8. Cinny 8

    The Housing Affordability Measure (HAM) was commissioned by Cabinet in 2012 but still has yet to see the light of day, despite a planned release in 2015, 2016, then February 2017.

    Dang, that is shocking incompetence, and during that time the office of minister of housing has been dissolved, record homelessness, boarded up or sold off state houses, motel owners making a fortune from tax payer funded emergency accommodation. It’s sickening.

    • tc 8.1

      There’s the election clincher right there if the opposition keep it simple.

      A wilful destruction of our social housing sector.
      Fuelling the demand with tax havens, uber relaxed immigration, no foreign ownership guidelines or cgt.
      The profiteering behind state housing flogging and suburban carve ups.

      How many govt dept’s/SOE have let housing go that’s now forcing them into ugly residential housing markets as they seek accomodation for their transient workforce I wonder.

      This has been a cruel calculated eviseration of NZ’s residential housing market, if you think this is just an akl issue you need to get out more.

    • greywarshark 8.2

      Even worse Cinny is that it is taxpayer funded subsidies to renters from government and that goes to their landlords as part of the otherwise unaffordable rent. Yet the rental market is not a good money maker, the demand for housing stripping away the cheaper properties to an uncommercial level.

      Yet because of the known demand causing capital rise of housing, it seems a safe place to put excess money., or to dabble with borrowed money with little risk because of the government subsidy to renters. If landlords don’t do any R&M you can make a nice profit and sell to willing buyers. And the government keeps offering the private sector incentives to be landlords, with the accommodation benefit.

      So there is a massive payout to the private sector causing inflation of the worst kind, which doesn’t show up squarely in the CPI, when government should be turning out concrete houses in rows, like the old two-storey terrace houses. They would be tough to damage, but tenants that passed regular inspections successfully would receive credits towards getting a cheap loan for their own home. Carrot for good tenants and rewards, and a start to a responsible attitude from the lead group that we call ‘our’ government, expecting them to attend to citizens’ needs for housing and planning nationwide, not some in some areas.

  9. greg 9

    what gives the government the right to suppress data if its a shambles then the minister should be exposed lets hope its leaked but we don’t need to be told housing is a bubble nats must have Sergeant Schultz syndrome

  10. The New Student 10

    No need to go ham on the delayed HAM fam!

    We got you an app for that: Trade Me Property.

    Sincerely, DaD and MoM

  11. David Mac 11

    Reluctant to release data that confirms that our suspicions are correct, that is an elephant in the corner.

    “We saw it, it’s standing on our foot. Please make it go away or make space for someone that can.”

  12. David Mac 12

    We like our own patch. as much as the logical sense says go up, like they do in China, we want to watch out kids kicking a ball in the backyard.

    There are only 4.5 million of us, we are a Beijing suburb. I believe there is room for us to lead the lives we wish for. I often drive Highway 16, runs from Riverhead to Wellsford. 1000’s of hectares of land, as far as the eye can see. Relatively easy to push arterial roads through to the Northern motorway, not much further from the Auckland CBD than Whangaparoa Pen.

    The infrastructure spend would be huge. It would need the support of all of us and a govt’s cheque book. A govt more concerned with housing people than lining pockets. So much to do before the first deposit on a section is banked. Lets build it, they will come.

  13. David Mac 13

    A primary problem with us all nesting on enough space for backyard cricket is that getting around as we like to do reaches gridlock. We punt out oodles of pollutants as we grind along at a crawl.

    Driverless cars are just around the corner. We will all be able to kiss goodbye to the money pit that car ownership is. We will fit twice the vehicles on the road, computerised co-ordination will half journey times. When I’m going surfing, a button on my phone will have a vehicle with board racks out the front in 5 minutes. If I’m moving house, a big van type vehicle with a hydraulic tail-gate lift will show up. ‘Rides-r-us’ will send us a bill each month, it will be half what running a Pulsar would cost us.

    • saveNZ 13.1

      Why make NZ Thailand, Los Angeles and Kong Kong? If you want to live in those countries go there – it’s already done for you!

      Why make NZ a people and smog filled country. That is why people want to live here – to escape it. If you want to fill our agriculture land with houses and make our country something else – (offshore monopoly board seems to be the government answer), why live here. There is no trickle down from it for most people and certainly it will not last to the next generation.

      NZ has unique biodivesity and we are not a poor country either, we can keep our country safe and this means keeping the population static to keep pollution and development down.

      It’s like saying the Amazon is a waste, because they should cut it down and build houses. Those indigenous should let a few million people in from Asia cos there is plenty of room. Don’t be selfish! Loads of room for houses and parking and roads for all in the Amazon – and while your at it a free water pipe line for bottled water – it will grow the economy and take from communities and give to private enterprise!

      Or cut the rain forests down because palm oil will grow the countries economy and that is more efficient.

      We need to preserve Nature in NZ for it’s own sake. There is both wisdom and economic benefit in doing that.

  14. adam 14

    IS it becasue it is much worse, much, much worse. Is it that if people when they look at the data suddenly realise the government has been lying to them. That we are indeed living in a hyper inflationary period, and that inflation is in housing.

    Let me remind you if this was 1960’s that Dr Evil’s was talking about.

    Mind you there is always this to read.

    Click to access 2016jan79-1.pdf

    • greg 14.1

      it wouldn’t matter how bad the figures are the govt would just say they don’t beleave the report and move to cover-up mode

  15. Hongi Ika 15

    The National Government particularly Bill English and Dr Nick Smith definitely suffer from “Shultz Syndrome”.

    I Know nothing, nothing at all especially on matters such as housing, transport and water quality?

  16. RightWingAndProud 16

    And the answer is to get the government into the building business? I can see that working, not.

  17. Philj 17

    The government is totally to blame for mismanagement of the country, in every respect I can think of. What is the “brighter future” the voters were promised? Big spending on Defence and Expressways? This lot are so terrible it is amazing to me that people haven’t seen it yet.

  18. Tanz 18

    so vote Winston, who wants housing reform.

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