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NRT: A surprise policy

Written By: - Date published: 7:12 pm, October 7th, 2014 - 32 comments
Categories: housing, john key, national, same old national, slippery - Tags:

no-right-turn-256Reposted from No Right Turn

Remember National’s social housing policy? The one they campaigned on? The one that talked about how much money they were spending and was all about upgrading and investing in state houses? Somehow, post-election, its transmogrified into selling off a third of the state housing stock:

Key signalled [the social housing sector] could be dramatically boosted, with the Housing NZ portfolio squeezed and a “substantial increase” in housing provided by social agencies.

Organisations such as the Salvation Army and Presbyterian Support could have a “much bigger role” as housing providers.

The mix between the Crown’s existing stock and its investment in housing for low-income Kiwis that was provided by others was “wrong”, Key said.

While the Government would not “go crazy” in selling existing Housing NZ stock, properties were often in the wrong place and the wrong size.

Housing NZ had already identified that about $5 billion of its stock was not fit for purpose, and English confirmed yesterday that there would be sales.

So, having squeezed eligibility so far that people living in garages aren’t classed as desperate enough to need a state house, National is now going to basically exit the sector entirely and dump it on charities. Whose funding can then be cut in future to save money and provide tax cuts for the rich.

National didn’t campaign on this, and it wasn’t what we voted for. But they’ve never let that get in the way of anything. Charter schools, Ruthanasia – their electoral history is studded with examples of them saying one thing while seeking election, then doing something dramatically different once they’ve gained the Ministerial benches. One of their past leaders even talked openly about a “moral obligation to lie” about their policies. And this is just more of the same.

32 comments on “NRT: A surprise policy”

  1. vto 1

    30 years of neoliberal policies and how has New Zealand’s housing changed?

    Anyone care to have a jab?

    Has it improved? Or worsened?

    And Bill English wants to continue down the same track, with the same policies?

    What the fuck is the matter with the man …… the meanest bastard in town is what Bill English is, serving the greedy and the selfish.

    doesn’t the future just look great ……. / sarc

    • Chris 1.1

      Wormtongue Bill.

      Has Labour said they’d put an end to Nactal’s housing destruction policy yet?

  2. Heather 2

    This is no surprise, the suprise possibly, is how quick it is happening.
    When you are old an cynical as we are I am sure that the buyers are already waiting in the wings, the deal would have been arranged some time ago and Key and his cronies only waiting for the election.
    To see the story in the paper in the weekend and the story on TV tonight with the poor man and his wife with cancer and him unable to work with a ACC work injury and facing a most uncertain future with his housing, makes me feel sick to the stomach.
    English blaming the problem of housing on councils is also a joke, these people are unbelievable, do they really believe that we can’t see what they are doing?
    And people still talk about ‘the nice Mr Key’. I am so excited about Anne Tolley taking over Social Development – yeah right!

  3. Saarbo 3

    English was at his worst with a very approving Duncan Garner on Garner Live this afternoon. English reckoned his main reason for doing this was because “the government wasn’t very good at providing housing”, so I guess he was thinking the market would do it better, he actually has no idea how the market will do it better, it will just do it better, just because. English has always being a purist for the free market dogma…its as if the GFC didn’t happen. He needs to read this:http://billmoyers.com/content/bill-black/#.VDMZSnxjU-8.twitter

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      “the government wasn’t very good at providing housing”

      Our own history proves the reverse – the government is very good at providing housing. It’s the market that’s lousy at it.

      so I guess he was thinking the market would do it better, he actually has no idea how the market will do it better, it will just do it better, just because.

      Yep, pure ideology – that and he and his rich mates will be able to make massive profits from the sale of state houses.

      English has always being a purist for the free market dogma…its as if the GFC didn’t happen.

      Like every proponent of the free-market he’s living in a dream world that’s a nightmare for the rest of us.

      • Saarbo 3.1.1

        Added to that, the MARKET has driven the value of Auckland housing through the roof, primarily because of the tax advantages of owning investment housing…and English conveniently blames the Councils, clearly to ease the Nats new RMA changes through http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11338730

        • Tracey aka Rawshark 3.1.1.1

          In twenty years auckland will be a mess… And twenty years ago people said the same thing and they were right… But those making all the decisions wont be living here… They might have an apartment but not their main home…

  4. Jenk 4

    Yeah right, Heather ! I just cannot watch TV anymore, nor read much of the papers !
    We can expect more awful things to happen as we watch our country being sold, or going down the drain ….. and too many of our people with it. Depressing stuff !

  5. RedBaronCV 5

    Somehow I can see the charities being somewhat reluctant to pick up the ball here.
    And how can a house be less fit for purpose than a car.

    • Tracey aka Rawshark 5.1

      One such charity said yesterday that while happy to provide more social housing it doesnt think selling state houses is a good idea…

      Ask the renters of auckland how well they provide social housing…

  6. coaster 6

    How would charities buy this number of houses?

    On the plus side it might supply some houses for those unable to get on the property , to be able to do so, at the expense of others.

    is this realy happening in nz, this isnt the country I used to be proud of.

  7. OneTrack 7

    What does “not fit for purpose mean” and how much of this housing stock in Eketahuna or similar?

    • Tracey aka Rawshark 7.1

      My understanding is that the purpose of a house is to provide adequate shelter for occupants and not be unsafe or unsanitary or a fire risk(see building act)… Ergo a house not fit for purpose doesnt provide adequate shelter within the building act and is unsafe, unsanitary, a fire hazard or all three.

      • Bob 7.1.1

        Spot on Tracey, also there are 2 bedroom houses on massive sections when 3 and 4 bedroom houses are required, and houses in small towns or areas of cities where there is no demand for housing.

        Campbell Live did a great show on the positives around the changes to social housing and the great work being done by the likes of the Salvation Army and the Tindall Foundation last week.

  8. Redelusion 8

    How is housing going in socialist utopia of venuzla, Bolivia , North korea it is the distortion put on the market via regulation, land avialibility etc that is causing the housing shortage in nz, not Neo liberalism. Like to earn a dollar every time Neo liberalism is used on this site, it is such a lazy word used by far left to justify every little evil in their little closed la la world

    • miravox 8.1

      “How is housing going in socialist utopia… “

      Housing seems to be working pretty well in social democratic Vienna where the government seems to distort the market with every tool it can find.

      Click to access socialhous.pdf


      (p22-25 for an overview of modern Vienna housing)

      60 % of all Vienna households live in subsidised apartments, including 220,000 in council housing.

      …The general policy of Vienna, i.e. not to leave urban development and housing completely up to the free market, is complemented by the housing subsidies and by the regulations of the Building Order… [that describes] in detail its exact use for each plot of land, the height and form of the buildings (free-standing, attached, etc.), the maximum density, the number of green areas, underground building parts, etc. They are legally binding for everyone after adoption by the City Council.

      Add in
      – mixed housing social and private tenure neighbourhoods
      – planned long-term development and renewal strategies
      – strict long-term rental laws that usually favour the tenant
      – rent controls and living standards for private and housing association rentals
      – developments (often tendered to private construction firms) in tandem with public transport

      gives a city that belies Bill English’s assertion that governments are not very good at housing. Governments just have to want to be good at it.

    • Tracey aka Rawshark 8.2

      Ask leaky home owners and councils how deregulation of timber treatment and acceptance of misleading claddings worked

    • MrSmith 8.3

      Redolution: your answer is just make more land available, you wouldn’t be a farmer or property speculator sitting on some soon to be rezoned rural land would you? I bet those farmers on the edge of town will be rubbing their hands together at the thought of more rezoning and fortunes to be made. It’s all the RMA’s fault though, Bla, Bla, Bla, get used to this chant from National and it’s paid mouth pieces, nothing to do with inequity. Oh and see how long the Government lasts when due to all this land being opened up house and property prices start falling.

    • framu 8.4

      OK – lets say we open up all the land required to meet current demand tomorrow morning

      please explain how the sudden supply of land translates into cheaper houses

      and detail is what i want – not a theory, but actual, workable details

      the challenge is now issued – are you up to it?

      • MrSmith 8.4.1

        It’s simple really, it called supply and demand, if you suddenly have an over supply of cheap sections this will have an affect on over all section prices, as sellers will have to meet the market, this will have little affect on land values in desirable locations, but will have a positive affect for the people who are struggling to buy their first home. House can be built for $2000 a square meter, so a 100 square meter house for $200k small cheap section for say $100k in a buyers market seems reasonable, a lot of this farm land isn’t returning much and developing it and selling it off would be very attractive to the farmer.

        Of-course this is not the complete answer, I would like to see low interest state advance loans for first home buyers, more infill housing is some areas, immigration restraints, overseas buyers taxed, also but I’m getting a bit off track, the inflationary monetary system needs reforming.

  9. adam 9

    Is a person who burns down the state house they are kicked out of, a bad person?

    So does the xenophobia crack makes more sense now?

    What does a national party backhand look like?

    What do you do when one side of the political debate feels it’s OK to lie, then feel it’s ok to be ideological, then feel it’s ok to destroy people?

    Squirrel?

    OK explanation for last question https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxYYPziLdR4

    • Tracey aka Rawshark 9.1

      Good people do bad things. Burning the house down isnt a “good” thing to do… And there are consequences, one of which may be a jail cell, warmth and three meals a day. That may be a good outcome for the arsonist depending on their circs.

  10. tc 10

    Note to all opposition parties:
    Your inability to work together strategically to remove national from power will result in more actions such as this.

    Congratulations on failing those in NZ who desperately needed respite from a govt that has proven over 2 terms it doesnt care about social equity, soverignty, due process, workers rights and lives, etc etc

    Pay careful attention middle NZ this is what most of you voted for.

    • Richard AKA RAWSHARK 10.1

      TC STFU, Focus your anger toward the MSM who blocked the left message and used their power to dispel the bad press national were receiving and turning it too National favour. The left could have had god at the helm and he still would not have been elected.

      • Tracey aka Rawshark 10.1.1

        Part of the problem but not all of it, imo. If god had been leading LP he would have understood compromise for the greater good

      • tc 10.1.2

        The MSM were always going to behave as they did, not factoring that into the strategy is rather naive.

        Anger toward the MSM is simply pissing into the wind…enjoy the shower.

        • kiwisaver 10.1.2.1

          I think the MSM has got much worse over time. Maybe there’s more money to be made from the Whaleoil/Farrar contacts, but they have been especially vicious to Labour this time.
          And I thought Sean Plunket was going to bust a valve when he spoke to Kim Dotcom.
          There seems to be a few rightwing governments around the world, especially the 5-eyes ones, where the media have been taken over by their corporate donors
          Give the plebs bread and circuses eg entertainment and distractions and put a jolly little PM in to front the thing and you’re away laughing.

          • Paul 10.1.2.1.1

            Agreed..the media has become more tabloid.
            Most of the time vacuous, with tales of celebrity and sport.
            Most of time sensational, with crime stories to engender fear.
            Most of the time running back stories to support their agenda…expensive house prices (RMA changes), bad teachers ( charter schools), bad councils ( more central government), bad parents ( cutting benefits)
            Then, when a threat appears….vicious relentless attacks…Cunliffe, Internet Mana, etc

          • tc 10.1.2.1.2

            Its not ‘worse’ per se its behaving as its owners require our issue is the bar was not high to begin with so folk dont see much change.

    • Tracey aka Rawshark 10.2

      Agree with you… Three seats

      Ohariu
      Epsom
      TTT

      a better cooperation and a genuine desire to rid kiwis of tjis regime and there was a chance… Still depended on winston though…

      Your point, well made imo, is it seemed the LP in particular only wanted nats gone on their 100% own terms.

      • tc 10.2.1

        TTT gives an extra doesn’t it as Mana’s party votes count unless they weren’t enough % and akl central’s green votes on Labour makes 5 potential extras.

  11. GRiM aka Rawshark 11

    Here’s a little mental exercise for you all:

    Double all wages in NZ, reduce the NZ dollar value to half,

    Q) what is the outcome?

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