Key’s land tax – too weak

Written By: - Date published: 7:11 am, April 28th, 2016 - 76 comments
Categories: capital gains, capitalism, class war, housing, john key, tax - Tags: , , , , ,

Concern over Auckland housing has reached critical mass, with many on social media expressing support for Duncan Garner’s strongly worded piece yesterday:

Suburb-cleansing: Working poor evicted from their backyards

If you want to know what’s wrong with Auckland’s housing market, then Otara is a poster-child for failure. Auckland’s ‘working poor’ – the hard working, taxpaying, minimum wage cleaners and factory workers – can no longer afford to live in the working class suburbs set-up to house them.

It’s a bloody disgrace and it’s wrong, wrong, wrong and wrong. We need to rally against this.

We don’t need any more proof that action is needed fast. Not tomorrow. Yesterday.

Investors are running amok. In Otara 80% of sales recently went to investors. These people are struggling to be tenants in their own backyards. They will be feeling powerless no matter how hard they work.

The working poor are being what I now call, ‘suburb-cleansed’ – they’re being pushed further and further away from the schools and factories their kids attend and their parents work in.

This is not the fair country I call home.

Key’s land tax is not going to cut it. Gareth Morgan is very convincing on the problems:

A land tax just for foreigners? Come on John, you’re better than this

John Key has floated the idea of an annual land tax on foreign buyers of residential real estate as one response to the influx of money into the Auckland market particularly.

Land tax is part of one of the biggest holes in our income tax regime so in principle I agree. For years now I’ve advocated taxing all effective income from capital. Currently New Zealand doesn’t do this and it’s an insult to fairness.

However, the prime minister is looking at a land tax only rather than a tax on effective income from all capital – and he’s only looking to tax foreigners. That’s the sort of tax incoherence that Muldoon championed and the Rogernomics revolution got rid of, so I can’t agree with him, just as respectable economists couldn’t agree with Muldoon’s livestock incentive scheme or his crazy wage and price freezes. Arbitrary and selective reactionary taxation is the epitome of policy naivety. One would have hoped John Key wouldn’t take us back into that black hole.

So the PM is looking at a land tax for foreigners. If that were to eventuate, I smell an even greater profit opportunity personally than just accumulating empty houses. To become the go-between that the Chinese or other foreigners needing to effectively own more and more of New Zealand’s housing stock looks enticing. I’d simply use a blind trust or nominee company to do the buying for them – for a small share of the capital gain of course. And if that were too hard, I’d raise funds in China to establish a company to do the same.

Think again, think less reactively and try to think beyond pleasing just the property-owning class that always vote National.

Likewise Fran O’Sullivan:

Weak measures solve nothing

John Key’s calculated punt to threaten land taxes on foreign investors won’t solve the Auckland housing crisis.

It will play well among National’s voting heartland. But it will not make home ownership more affordable for the many young New Zealanders who are finding it difficult to even get on to the Auckland housing ladder.

If he really wanted to bring the galloping market to a halt and house prices to a more sustainable long-term level, he would take note of the findings of a tax working group in 2010.

The group estimated that a 1 per cent tax on all land – not just land owned by non-residents – would immediately cut the value of land by 17 per cent.So why isn’t Key even going to look at whacking domestic investors?

O’Sullivan goes on to list measures that can be taken (including capital gains tax), as does Isaac Davison in this useful piece.

Labour is promising, according to this report, “a ‘tidal wave’ of big housing reforms the country had not seen since [former Labour Prime Minister] Michael Joseph Savage time”.

This is one of the major issues for the 2017 election. Key is going to have to do more.

76 comments on “Key’s land tax – too weak ”

  1. Nick 1

    Where are my clothes? PM

  2. Sabine 2

    I really like the Chutzpah of Gareth Morgan, not paying any tax, speculating on the housing market by buying up properties to keep them empty (an investor he is not? wonder how much property he is holding in Otara for future Captial Gains) and again arguing for a tax that he will under no circumstances pay if his highly paid accountant can make it so.

    I am actually for taxing people like him that keep properties empty on purpose in a City that has a housing Crisis. Tax the living day light out of that bludger.

    And yes, i understand that there are a few that think the man is a god send or something and other , oh and he has a foundation (after all he needs something tax deductible – i wonder if he owns his bikes or if they are owned and maintained by the foundation), but until the day he stops being a bludger in my books he is part of the problem and not the solution.

    Everyone can argue for new taxes, especially if there is no chance in hell you will get saddled with them.

    • ianmac 2.1

      Shoot the messenger why not Sabine? Of course his message is that Key is too little too late so that is a mean thing for Gareth to write and so untrue. 🙂

      • Sabine 2.1.1

        No i am at the point now where the people that gain from the system, that are on record of using the system to the biggest advantage for themselves are not part of the solution.

        Again, listen to what I said, everyone can argue for new taxes – you can and so can I – but it is really really just chutzpah to argue for taxes that in all likely hood you will never pay as a loophole will be created or found to prevent you from paying taxes.

        And Gareth with his empty houses is part of the problem, as are all the other speculators that have a combined estimated 20.000+ houses empty in the greater Auckland region.

        Every now and then we mention Germany and housing. Well, currently the german government is in the process of ‘confiscating’ empty commercial properties ( at market value – i.e. the German Government will pay rent to the owners of said empty speculation properties) to house people.
        They have also in the Past (89 – 92 after the wall came down and you had 11 million east Germans on the march to West Germany) done the same to house the influx of people and encourage the re-fitting of office properties to rentals.
        People that would not want to rent their empties to the Goverment were charged a Tax. They just recently instituted a rent cap on rentals in Berlin for the same reason, to curb rent speculation.

        When Gareth Morgan starts advocating for such measures I might give him a cuppa, until then he is part of the problem, and no matter how many words he uses about what taxes should be created, it still holds true that he would not be paying any of them, while at the same time enjoying all the benefits to him created by the funds of people that can not avoid to pay their taxes.

        A bludger is a bludger, not matter if he is a National Party Stooge or a pretend leftie.

        • Bearded Git 2.1.1.1

          Around 50% of the houses in Wanaka/Queenstown remain empty for most of the year-just used for 6-8 weeks in summer and ski season and the odd weekend. This in a place with house prices similar to Auckland’s.

          One suggestion has been to increase rates (double/triple) on unused properties; these would be monitored/assessed as unused through electricity usage.

          • Graeme 2.1.1.1.1

            The holiday home thing is a bitch around Queenstown and Wanaka. Either they are empty, or if they are let the owner wants them back at peak periods. So the tenants are on the street, and employers find their staff need a shower before they can start work and a place to park their house / car.

            Airbnb / short term rental thing has buggered the market too, much hair shed at council over this issue, and loosing all the cabins at Lakeview for the bloody convention centre that’s going nowhere.

            But everyone wants someone else to bear the cost of a solution.

      • BevanJS 2.1.2

        At least one of the messengers mentioned does shoot himself. “Arbitrary and selective reactionary taxation is the epitome of policy naivety. One would have hoped John Key wouldn’t take us back into that black hole.”

        Sugar tax anyone?

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      I am actually for taxing people like him that keep properties empty on purpose in a City that has a housing Crisis. Tax the living day light out of that bludger.

      That’s pretty much what he’s demanding. He uses himself as an example to show the glaring shortfalls of our tax system.

      • Sabine 2.2.1

        now for just a moment think and realize that non of the speculator class (of which he is a member) is actually buying anything in Auckland, they are buying parcels of land that have a wooden shack on them.
        The land holds the value not the house.

        Will he end up paying that Land tax? I very very much doubt he will. As he is already not paying taxes, as he is already making money for keeping his shacks empty to essentially only collect the land value that goes up a thousand + dollars every week.

        IF we have a Land tax ( and I am not against this as a tool) i am very certain that you and me home owner would end up paying it every year, but I have no doubt, in fact i would put a wager on it, that Gareth Morgan will then write another little thing about the loop holes that will give him the opportunity to not pay taxes.

        IF he were to tell his Accountant to account in a way that would make him pay taxes, he could do so today, he could also rent all his empty buildings and make a family or three happy, but he is not doing it.

        So in my books, he is the same as all the other very rich and well to do that do their darnerst to not pay tax. He can still write about raising taxes, creating them and what not in his ample free time, after all he is an economist? is he not?

        • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.1

          IF we have a Land tax ( and I am not against this as a tool) i am very certain that you and me home owner would end up paying it every year, but I have no doubt, in fact i would put a wager on it, that Gareth Morgan will then write another little thing about the loop holes that will give him the opportunity to not pay taxes.

          Ah, but that’s not the problem of taxes per se but of private ownership, how that ownership can transferred to a business and how a business income can be ring-fenced so that the taxes it pays are from it’s own income and not part of the total income of the owner of the business and that the owner of the business doesn’t own the houses.

          In other words, we’re talking business structure here rather than taxes. That’s how business people get away with not paying taxes – structuring their businesses so as to avoid them. It’s actually the argument that I’ve been having with Lanthanide over here.

          I think we really need to look at that as well as what taxes we levy. As I’ve said, we need to design a tax system from the ground up that’s fit for purpose.

          • Sabine 2.2.1.1.1

            How hard is it that Taxation laws are written by the Haves and Have more to be applied to the aspirational have nots.

            Our whole tax system as it is now is already not working when People like Gareth Morgan a. don’t pay tax despite record incomes and dividends and b. keep houses empty not so much for the crappy cheapest grey/beige office carpet but for the fact that he gets money for doing nothing.

            And you are now saying that Saint Gareth is going to become a “Person” to pay the land tax, and would not structuring any tax costs from a Land Tax into his “business affairs” .

            Seriously mate, take of your blinders. Gareth Morgan is as much a part of the problem then any other Land Banker/Speculator that gets away with legal tax avoidance.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.1.1.1

              Really, you should read what was said first:
              As I’ve said, we need to design a tax system from the ground up that’s fit for purpose.

  3. weka 3

    “This is not the fair country I call home.”

    No shit. Some of us have been pointing this out for a bloody long time and what where the MSM doing? Glad you are finally on board, but you’ve got some catching up to do. Ambulances atthr bottom of the cliff need to be replaced with fences at the top.

    • North 3.1

      Yeah it’s bloody amazing isn’t it ? The wahanui who’ve spent years loving Fake Man Key………suddenly it’s “Fire Fire Fire……..” Their vainglory has them think they were the first to notice. Disgusting !

    • esoteric pineapples 3.2

      The mainstream is always behind the trends whether its music or a housing crisis. But getting them on board (eventually) is incredibly important to getting anything done.

      • weka 3.2.1

        That’s true although I think in this case wilful ignorance and self interest have been bigger factors than the normal way that the mainstream changes. Let’s hope the likes of Garner can do the right thing now.

        • Sabine 3.2.1.1

          self interest created the wilful ignorance.

          Heck, have a look at West Auckland around Te Atatu South, they are being gentrified by force.

          A rugby park with Flashlights n all in the middle of a residential neighborhood with children – you can not imagen the fun of hundreds of cars coming in your cul the sac after 5, screaming blokes and lights in your house till 10 pm every friggen day of the week, and then hundreds of cars leaving after 10 pm.

          Te Atatu South road, grinding and banging all through the night every day for the last year and at least for another 2 years. – cause the roads needs widening and such, despite the fact that what they are doing is already not enough and will not even a drop on the hot stone.

          And among all this we drop ‘housings zones of several hundreds of properties’ on what used to be three sections.
          .

          So now you live in a neighborhood with half houses empty (cause why rent if one can make money for doing nothing?) and the other half rents every six month because no one manages to last that long, what with the flash lights, the blokes brouhahahing about their rubgy and soccer (btw, no Family park was build – women and children need not apply for use of the park, and to boot the park was fenced of for the better part of several years)

          This is socio economic cleansing. And hey, if we Aucklanders can’t afford it, or manage the noise, the madness and the likes anymore we can just move ey?
          To Hamilton maybe or Huntly and commute ey? How long do you think you keep your job if 3 times out of 5 yer late cause traffic ?

          Thinking, its not something that is done beyond someones personal bank account.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.3

      Oh, he’s not on board as this line demonstrates:

      Auckland’s ‘working poor’ – the hard working, taxpaying, minimum wage cleaners and factory workers – can no longer afford to live in the working class suburbs set-up to house them.

      Got to keep the proles in the ghetto but he does realise that the proles need to be there.

  4. Colonial Viper 4

    Perhaps it is time for Labour to reinstate the CGT which they simply walked away from, while instituting a stronger Land Tax than Key is proposing.

    • weka 4.1

      Are you taking the piss?

      • Colonial Viper 4.1.1

        The post says we need stronger action so why not?

        • weka 4.1.1.1

          Was that a yes you are taking the piss?

          • Colonial Viper 4.1.1.1.1

            Pointing out that National is not doing enough and that we need political parties ready to step forward to do more is now taking the piss?

            • weka 4.1.1.1.1.1

              Not at all. It’s hard to tell where you are at with Laboir so I was checking out what you meant. Is there some reason you won’t clarify?

              • Colonial Viper

                Do you really need to psychoanalyse my comments? Do you really need to be doing the – what is the hidden subtext here? What is the point to your exercise of hermeneutics?

                • weka

                  You spend a good chunk of your time here bashing Labour. I couldn’t tell if your comment above at 4 was Labour bashing or not. Again, why not just clarify? I’m not looking at your psyche thanks.

    • Ad 4.2

      Little was weak to fold on such a core policy.
      Having said that, in politics it’s wrong to be right too soon.

      If the time has come to face more taxes on real estate – as Key is foreshadowing he is – then it’s well time for Little to revisit it as well.

      Housing can’t be left to Twyford alone to shoulder – real estate and its overseas debt is now the dominant medium-term risk to the country.

      • Colonial Viper 4.2.1

        Little was weak to fold on such a core policy.
        Having said that, in politics it’s wrong to be right too soon.

        The electorate and the political situation was rapidly moving towards Labour’s CGT when Labour dumped it. Everyone knew that the Auckland housing crisis was getting worse not better.

        If Labour had stayed strong and principled on the CGT they could be winning PR points every day now against Key’s lacklustre copycat efforts. But they didn’t.

        This is also called ‘snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.’

        • billmurray 4.2.1.1

          CV: Perceptive and true, I changed from being a Labour supporter at that time.

        • b waghorn 4.2.1.2

          Have to agree, after the election I had two multi home owners , one who I know voted national due to labours cgt platform say that really a cgt should be in place.

        • mikes 4.2.1.3

          A capital gains tax won’t solve the problem especially as long as the capital gains are big enough.

          Ban companies, trusts, etc from owning residential properties and make a natural human being the only legal entity that can own a residential property. (Houses are for people to live in. There’s absolutely no reason at all for a company to own residential property other than for tax benefits or other financial gain).

          Ban foreigners (non citizens or permanent residents) from purchasing residential property in NZ. (Houses are for people to live in, not for foreigners to make money from.) There’s absolutely no reason at all for a foreigner to own residential property here other than for tax benefits or other financial gain, which offer no benefit whatsoever to New Zealanders) If you want to buy a house here then come and live here

          Problem solved.

  5. Incognito 5

    Since when has National cared about the precariat living in Otara? For crying out loud, Key is willing to trade humans with China in return for a few dollars.

  6. gsays 6

    “This is one of the major issues for the 2017 election. Key is going to have to do more.”

    with respect, no he will not.

    two elections ago national flagged unpopular asset sales, and won the election.

    labour put up a cgt (primary residence excluded) and did not prevail. (possibly altering retirement age would not have helped).

    when so many mps have property portfolios i cant see too much cold water poured on the housing issue.

    to me, this is the tax haven bruhaha in miniature: and most who can do it, do it.

    tbh, at its core is greed, wanting more than my fair share.
    whether it be off-shore tax havens, owning several empty houses, thru to self employed using fuel for private use and claiming it through their company.
    it’s just that the rich are better at it.

  7. ianmac 7

    A good collection of comments thanks Rob.
    Key fears more a reaction from the rich folk should a wider land tax happen, and fears not the poor of say Otara.

    • ScottGN 7.1

      Surely he might have reason to fear the poor of Otara if they get pissed off enough to return to the polling booths after sitting out out the last 3 elections?

  8. Draco T Bastard 8

    Arbitrary and selective reactionary taxation is the epitome of policy naivety. One would have hoped John Key wouldn’t take us back into that black hole.

    Actually, being arbitrary and selective is exactly what I’d expect FJK to do. He’s trying to ensure that his rich mates don’t pay tax and what he’s suggesting here is going to produce tax loopholes you could drive a fleet of trucks through – exactly as designed.

  9. Graeme 9

    The Nats are getting shown up for the tired and intellectually bankrupt government that they are. There’s no coherence between policies, much of which is reactionary, or too slow and gets passed by reality.

    Economic development was all dairy, until it fell to bits as predicted, and immigration. Both of which pushed up NZD and killed the rest of the export economy (rest of agriculture and tourism) Now it’s all tourism but it’s only the government’s doing due to the NZD tanking because dairy went fut.

    Now it’s tourism’s turn to meet constraints from lack of investment, leadership and forethought. It’s not all central government, the local version is just as culpable, but they are just doing what Wellington tells them to do with Convention Centres, SHAs etc.

    Today, our local paper, Mountain Scene comes out with this, http://www.scene.co.nz/mountain-scenes-pleatokey/328111a1.page inviting readers to petition Key directly. All of which is quite a contrast to the sycophantic coverage he normally gets from Mountain Scene. Following through the links in the page gives an illustration of the train wreck that his management of tourism and housing has become.

    And the socialisation of the costs, always been the way our wide boys operate, but its of to another level now.

    But back to his land tax, in a Queenstown perspective the idea’s got some merit as there a huge number of vacant properties with offshore owners. Provided it can’t be got around, which it will, easily.

    Muppets

    • ScottGN 9.1

      I must say I got quite a surprise when I picked up the Mountain Scene at the Post office this morning, Strong stuff from our local rag which usually treats the PM as if he’s just walked on water.

      • Colonial Viper 9.1.1

        Wow that’s quite something…the tide is turning even in Deepest Tory Land.

        • Graeme 9.1.1.1

          Yeah, people have had enough of the bullshit and platitudes. Electorate is definitely up for grabs, but more of a Northland scenario so would need a very good NZF candidate. Party vote could be a bit harder, but turnout in Qtn is pitiful.

    • ScottGN 9.2

      The most obvious exemption from the Land Tax will be Australian owners who own a lot of the (mostly) empty properties in Queenstown.

      • Graeme 9.2.1

        Yeah, the property will go straight into a NZ company or trust, fixed, not a problem.

        They do create a lot of employment, looking after them, but it’s all low wage stuff and were do the workers live now?

        As Penny Clark said, http://www.odt.co.nz/news/queenstown-lakes/381274/accommodation-crisis-threat-queenstown “Queenstown could grind to a halt without urgent temporary staff accommodation”

        But really Penny, tell your shareholders / owners to invest in staff accomodation, permanent accomodation, not not some container farm. Do it properly.

        • ScottGN 9.2.1.1

          I’ve been told Trojan who run NZski and Ultimate Hikes etc are thinking of buying properties along Gorge Road to house their seasonal workers. Last year there was a lot of publicity about NZski staff turning up in town and spending weeks living in their cars while they tried to find accommodation.

          • Graeme 9.2.1.1.1

            They own the Northern Southland Transport yard, which is huge and being moved out to Frankton very soon. The Bus Park next door is on the market, but a lot of that is heavy, intrenched industrial uses. There’s all the east side of the street which is scratching for commercial tenants, and the High School’s out of there in 2018, so all on for young and old in Gorge Road. Appropriate zone change in new district plan as well. Only though is that the proposed zoning might not be bold enough, but I gather there’s some submissions on that. The usual hissing about carparking requirements.

            NZSki has block booked the Chalets in Cromwell for staff this year. No different to when the dam was being built. But that only works for really defined working hours, not a hope of making it work in hospo with all sorts of odd shifts and split shifts, those people have to be in Queenstown.

            • Graeme 9.2.1.1.1.1

              http://www.scene.co.nz/ghetto-fears-over-worker-accommodation/328190a1.page

              Well that put some reality into the discussion.

              It’s going to be hard to do, perceived as costing as much as low end visitor accomodation for less return and a management nightmare. Translation – the paw’s out for a contribution.

              I’ve lived in few “worker’s accomodation” situations and yes they can be tough to manage, but some do it very well, been in others that weren’t so flash and got out fast.

              Discussion has a bit to run yet.

  10. Bearded Git 10

    In 2010 a 1% across the board would bring in $460m according to the Tax Working Group. Given inflation in land values in the last 6 years my estimate is that this would be $700m now.

    As Hickey says “it is simple, clean, and would prompt more intense development of land and also encourage land bankers to build…”

    This would help solve the housing crisis and bring in $700m for the health service, public education, railways, DOC tracks etc etc. Labour should introduce it as policy but with NO EXEMPTIONS-it will turn into a dog’s breakfast with these.

    • b waghorn 10.1

      What about the pensioners and those low wage people who own houses and are going to struggle to find another 1 too 5 thousand dollars a year.

      • alwyn 10.1.1

        You have to remember that to our left wing friends they are just rich pricks, as Cullen so eloquently put it. In other words, “Stuff them”.

        • framu 10.1.1.1

          except cullen called key a rich prick

          the idea that cullen called all people earning over a certain amount “rich pricks” is a myth

          • alwyn 10.1.1.1.1

            “cullen called all people ….”.
            Yes, I know that. That is why I attributed the phrase to Cullen, but the belief to many of the left wing.
            Actually if you really want to see what Cullen thought you should go back and read his maiden speech. I don’t think he ever changed in his views from that time. He was just a little bit more guarded in what he said in public.

            • framu 10.1.1.1.1.1

              so your trading in myths to inaccurately misrepresent a diverse group of people?

              thats grand of you

        • Paul 10.1.1.2

          Ah, the defender of the elite arrives….

      • dv 10.1.2

        The pensioners tend to be NZ residents BW, so wouldn’t count.

        • b waghorn 10.1.2.1

          Bearded Git and the likes of Gareth Morgan are promoting it for all property .
          If key puts a land tax in on foreign owners only ,its only a matter of time till its expanded.

        • alwyn 10.1.2.2

          “tend to be NZ residents BW, so wouldn’t count”.

          But if Bearded Git, to whom b waghorn was replying had his way they would be affected.
          After all the proposal being put was that “Labour should introduce it as policy but with NO EXEMPTIONS”.

          He is perfectly entitled to question the proposal that is being put and deserves an answer. The fact that you are talking about a totally different proposition is irrelevant.

      • Puckish Rogue 10.1.3

        Sell up and move to a cheaper area is one suggestion (its what i’ll doing later on) reverse mortgage is another.

        • b waghorn 10.1.3.1

          Making the first $400 k on the first property exempt would probably be a fairer option .

      • Incognito 10.1.4

        It’s getting a little late so I’ll have to keep it short:

        http://thestandard.org.nz/daily-review-27042016/#comment-1165567

    • alwyn 10.2

      Where do you get the figure of $460m from a 1% levy?

      At the time, 2010, The Herald gave an amount very close to that for Auckland houses alone at a rate of 0.5%
      From http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10623183
      “According to conservative estimates, owners of the region’s 443,200 homes alone would have to give the Treasury an extra $443 million if they were subject to a 0.5 per cent levy”.

      The same Herald article estimated
      “The Victoria University-led tax working group recommended taxing the unimproved value of property – the land, not the house. It said a 0.5 per cent levy would raise $2.3 billion.”
      Your numbers seem to be way too low.

      • dv 10.2.1

        Where do you get the figure of $460m from a 1% levy?

        Notice in BGs, first sentence

        In 2010 a 1% across the board would bring in $460m according to the Tax Working Group.

        • alwyn 10.2.1.1

          As I have noted below this number didn’t make any sense. It was not what the Tax Working Group said.

      • Bearded Git 10.2.2

        This is from Hickey’s article:

        “The 2010 Tax Working Group looked at a land tax. Arthur Grimes, a former Reserve Bank chairman, proposed it. It is simple, clean, and he estimated a 1 per cent tax on the value of land would raise $460 million a year and cut land prices by 17 per cent if it was introduced up front.”

        1% of $70 billion is $700 million. Land valued at this may be correct; remember we are not talking about the house.

        Hickey article is here:

        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11438686

        • alwyn 10.2.2.1

          Thank you. However either Hickey wrote this from memory, and got it wrong, or the person setting it up for printing stuffed it up.
          The number is out by a factor of about 8.
          In the original working paper at
          http://www.victoria.ac.nz/sacl/centres-and-institutes/cagtr/twg/publications/3-land-tax-ird_treasury.pdf
          The total value of land was given as $486 billion, reducing after the cut in land prices and excluding Public, Conservation and Maori Trustee land to about $384 billion with revenue of $3.8 billion.
          See page 5 of the linked document.
          The story you link to is about as accurate as Hickey usually is. ie Not at all.
          ps. This is from a working paper by the way. The final report is on-line but I can’t be bothered scrolling right through it to find what their final number might have been.

  11. slumbergod 11

    Hard to see Dear Leader and his fellow Natzis doing anything serious to fix the housing problem when CLEARLY THEY ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM.

    Come on Key, stop being a pussy. Deal with all of the property-owning elite STARTING WITH MPs and extending it to everyone.

    [Pre-emptive Anti-flame Retort – the most expensive thing I own is my laptop so anyone who owns land or property is part of the problem from where I am sitting]

  12. Ralf Crown 12

    “This is not the fair country I call home.” Neither do I. It is not a matter of capitalism or socialism, it is a matter of corruption and management of the economy. New Zealand was a fair country, it is gone now. The problem is easy to solve. Homes are not investment, it is speculation, sharking. Buy a home, let the tenants pay the mortgage, walk off with the tax free profit, the tenants pay for it. It is a matter of supply and demand, but the beancounter pigs sit invisible in the back room and put their demand, Key obey, don’t do anything that jeopardise my profits – I am a tall poppy investor. I am too important. Learn from the Chinese, they solved the problem, so it moved to New Zealand. First, they put a $5,000 fee, fee – not tax, if you sold a home within 5 years of buying it. Secondly they banned investment in homes. Homes are to live in, not something for investors or money sharks. Each family was only allowed one home, with few exceptions. Then they published recommended prices to pay, especially to young people. Then they overbuilt so there were plenty to choose from, and developers had to compete. It works. Young people walk around and bargain, a new home cost typically $50,000 now. They can pay off their new home in a couple of years.

  13. Enough is Enough 13

    What is Labour’s current policy of a CGT?

    They made a cluster fuck of it in 2014 and I thought they had given up on the idea.

    Hopefully they are formulating something a bit clearer that they can take to the electorate next year.

  14. The Chairman 14

    Building 100,000 new homes is a good policy

    However, cracking down on non-resident foreigners buying existing housing stock is ineffective.

    Cracking down on non-resident foreigners buying existing housing stock overlooks the impact new builds have on the price of land, which, in turn, drives up the price of housing.

    Clearly, Labour needs to to more in this area.

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