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Housing Corp is running out of money

Written By: - Date published: 11:42 am, October 13th, 2016 - 38 comments
Categories: bill english, housing, national, phil twyford, Politics, same old national - Tags:

National clowns key parata smith english brownlee

It seems that the strip mining of Housing Corporation so that the Government could declare a surplus is reaching its logical conclusion.  Treasury is forecasting Housing Corp to be out of money by next February.

From the Herald:

The Government’s state housing agency is set to run out of money by February, ministers have been warned.

Housing New Zealand has also told Finance Minister Bill English that it will have no cash for developments or to maintain houses past 2017/18.

That has prompted Labour’s housing spokesman Phil Twyford to accuse the Government of running the housing corporation into the ground.

“English has taken Housing New Zealand to the brink of financial ruin while at the same time publicly musing about getting it to build 30,000 extra state houses,” Twyford said.

In response, English told TVNZ that Government would have to stump up more money for HNZ. He revealed this week that HNZ would build 30,000 more houses over the next 10 years.

Clearly the selling of houses and the drawing of dividends from the State’s housing provider at a time of crisis was not a particularly good thing to do.  Just like Solid Energy it looks like National is running the Housing Corporation into the ground.

This may present an opportunity for the Government to accelerate its divestment of social housing.  But they really need to wear this.  Clearly their handling of the housing issue has been abysmal.

38 comments on “Housing Corp is running out of money ”

  1. Sacha 1

    And the government has been selling off state houses for less than they are worth:
    http://www.newshub.co.nz/tvshows/thenation/phil-twyford-2016081311

    Let’s see how the Finance Minister dresses up being forced to inject more cash into Housing NZ just to be able to do what they’ve already been asked to do.

    • Michelle 1.1

      Bill said yesterday while speaking to Garner that HNZ has money. He also could not answer the straight question put to him by Garner about the 30,000 houses they promised to build over the next 10 years. Bill said they were thinking about it and they hadn’t decided where they would spend the 1.8 million surplus ( they got of the backs of suffering Kiwis) Bill has been telling fibs and people need to start seeing this man for what he really is another tory bastard kicking the poor and struggling families in the guts so much for him being a Christian.

  2. Muttonbird 2

    I was particularly interested in what HNZ meant by this comment.

    The rent collected from state houses was not enough to assist the tenants’ “increasingly complex high needs”.

    I wondered what would be Bill English’s take on why tenants would have increasingly complex high needs?

    It couldn’t be because the state is reducing its duty of care for these tenants in both housing services and in poor wages and working conditions, could it?

  3. mauī 3

    So when is Housing New Zealand sold onto a private buyer for a few hundred million dollars and renamed The New Zealand Housing Company?

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      It’s already called the NZ Housing Corporation so it wouldn’t really need a name change.

      Got that with the ideological BS that even state services should produce a profit.

    • ropata 3.2

      Will probably be flogged off cheap to a shell company backed by a consortium of Nat MPs and cronies — like the rest of our public assets

  4. Draco T Bastard 4

    This may present an opportunity for the Government to accelerate its divestment of social housing.

    IMO, That’s what they’re hoping for. Sell off state housing so that landlords can get more government guaranteed profits that’s going to cost us more in both money and damage to society.

    Clearly their handling of the housing issue has been abysmal.

    Or, exactly as designed which is what I’m betting on. The bad press would only indicate that it’s not going as well as they’d hoped.

    • mickysavage 4.1

      There is that old saying about how you should never let a good crisis go to waste …

    • I think there’s a legitimate argument that their sell-off policy overperformed in its real objectives in a dangerous way. (ie. it worsened the housing problem they now have to the point that they actually now need to build more houses, which they didn’t want to do. It’s likely a mix of this being caused by them being True Believers in private housing being more efficient in getting people into homes, and that the policy was also about selling off state assets to advance to argument against state-owned services)

  5. Siobhan 5

    But they really need to wear this. …they’ll be wearing it with pride around their business friends and associates.
    I suspect the privatisation of Social Housing will take pride of place on Johns resume.

  6. Takere 6

    I’ve found $1.24b down the back of the couch you can have …. Here. $1.24billion IRD can go and collect for them to use to build houses! http://www.interest.co.nz/personal-finance/84038/tax-professor-calls-independent-inquiry-how-tax-evaders-and-benefit

    Not rocket science! But will they enforce, “One Law of All?”

    • pat 6.1

      “Not rocket science! But will they enforce, “One Law of All?”
      short answer ….no. By and large they would be pursuing themselves

    • Nic the NZer 6.2

      Betcha English can find the necessary funds to stump up to Housing NZ without increasing taxes by one cent.

  7. ropata 7

    Meanwhile NZTA is ramming a 1.8 billion dollar motorway thru the Onehunga foreshore. There is plenty of money, just no political will to deal with the crisis the Gnats have made.

    • Takere 7.1

      I see that. Its also going to be built over a new $30m improvement of that area by Panuku Dev. Ak council which will have to be torn up! Get rid of waste and wasteful departments at Ak Council.Panuku Developement group which use to be called Development Ak is quasi-mini cco wanting to be a big CCO when it grows up!

      • Sacha 7.1.1

        NZTA ramming a motorway for trucks over the top of Panuku’s foreshore development is no reflection on the latter agency or the Council. Government arrogance.

      • ropata 7.1.2

        Panuku development included a housing subdivision but that will be scrapped for MOAR MOTORWAYZ

  8. esoteric pineapples 8

    This government is running everything into the ground. It will leave the next government to sort out the mess once it finally gets booted out.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      Compare how considerate Labour is, Labour scrimps and saves, and pays off the credit card, so that when National comes in it the National Cabinet can spend up big.

  9. Colonial Viper 9

    Have the Reserve Bank issue Housing Corp with an extra $50M.

  10. TopHat 10

    next minute Blinglish announces a 1.8 billion budget surplus. I wonder how we got that :-/

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      I believe that Bill English should continue to run deficits in order to ensure that the economy is fed enough money from the government.

      A government surplus means that the government is starving the nation’s households and businesses of money.

      • Well, a government surplus means the government is slowing the economy down. That’s not always a bad thing, as the economy can be in a bubble, in which case the government would do better to run a surplus taken from the particular sectors in a bubble, and store it away against future recessions or depressions.

        • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1

          And you believe that is what Michael Cullen was doing? Deflating a runaway or bubble economy?

          • Matthew Whitehead 10.1.1.1.1

            I think there were definitely some points in the Clark government that the economy could have used with slowing down, but they probably ran surpluses too long.

            Independent of that, I just don’t think a surplus is categorically a bad thing.

  11. Ad 11

    Twyford needs to phrase his attack very carefully.

    Twyford, should he become Minister of Housing next year, will be in charge of multiple Crown entities to build housing, including larger ones than Tamaki Transformation and Hobsonville Land Co. This means exposing taxpayer money to the real estate market. That means blowtorch scrutiny when inevitably one or two of them go under as is likely in the boom-bust we are undergoing.

    Twyford will also be responsible for writing hundred-million dollar development contracts to build more affordable housing and rental housing. Again, this is massive taxpayer and market exposure.

    Twyford will need balls of steel and the full faith and backing of the Prime Minister to intervene in the housing market on the scale his policy proposes.

    He needs to aim his attack such that his words are not quickly used against him when he himself is in the hot seat trying to turn the entire real estate market of New Zealand.

    • Takere 11.1

      In total. The number of houses built in the past 7 years in Auckland (Hobsonville kicked off that far back) is 518.

      194 in Weymouth – Manurewa, iwi collective & a few NGO’s all pitched in. – Statutory count.

      Hobsonville (P.P.P) has delivered 306.

      Plus the 18 as declared by Ak Council OIA release, BUT, the affordable number of houses under $600k is less than 50!!

      A $1.8b Surplus?? I like to see if Blinglish will spend a $1b on housing if that is a “real” Surplus and not just an effect of Blinglish Accounting Software?

      And the Maori Party have had $18m/yr and have built 42 but this number of house is “I” think part of this total figure.

    • Red 11.2

      All talk no walk old twitford

      • Ad 11.2.1

        That’s the nature of being in opposition.

        All talk no walk Ministers Smith and English who have been in government for nearly nine years.

  12. Pasupial 12

    I know many here despise Bradbury (and I would agree that fact-checking any of his claims is essential). But I do have to admire his turns of phrase sometimes:

    All this Government can build are tax havens.

    http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2016/10/13/national-so-mean-theyve-made-housing-nz-homeless/

    • Red 12.1

      And 1.5b surpluses to sort out any HnZ shortfall and invest on nz behalf

      • Pasupial 12.1.1

        Rodgers has a nice turn of phrase too:

        They’ve fiddled the books to make the numbers come out OK. They even declared a surplus in the middle of the financial year – that’s how desperate Bill English has been to pretend that everything’s going along just fine in New Zealand…

        If you aren’t providing the services you are contracted to do – in this case, maintaining the public services and promoting the welfare of New Zealanders – and declaring a profit, you’re not running a successful business. You’re running a Ponzi scheme…

        There is no surplus – not if you care about people more than money.

        https://bootstheory.wordpress.com/2016/10/13/there-is-no-surplus/

        • Drowsy M. Kram 12.1.1.1

          For 8+ years ‘our’ government has treated NZ as a reverse mortgage property for the have-mores. When the mortgage ends, what will be the state and fate of the ‘property’?

          • Sacha 12.1.1.1.1

            Fully overseas-owned. Like folk who use family trusts, using the assets is detached from owning them in Bill and John’s paradise.

        • ropata 12.1.1.2

          Yep the Gnats are cheating taxpayers and stealing from the future of NZ. They are fucking over the whole public service and social fabric of NZ to keep their middle class fan base happy with inflated Auckland houses, lower taxes, and flash private schools subsidised by others.

          In IT there’s a thing called “technical debt” incurred when you take shortcuts in projects and leave messy code/bugs for others to clean up. Managers do not care about tech debt, their goal is to deliver a project on time. But the users and maintainers of the code have to put up with a buggy mess that makes their job harder. The manager has effectively shifted the cost of code maintenance & QA onto another team.

          The Gnats are past masters at offloading government “debt” (i.e. their obligation to govern responsibly) to households and social services and beneficiaries. There is a huge social cost that will be paid one way or another. The quality of life for most Kiwis is being destroyed so that Bill English can put some nice numbers on a fucking spreadsheet

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