Written By: - Date published: 4:02 pm, September 19th, 2016 - 74 comments
Categories: housing, paula bennett, spin, the praiseworthy and the pitiful, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: homeless, homeless crisis
The National Party smorgasbord of measures that will improve housing supply is being rolled out and will make a vital contribution to solving this most pressing of issues.
Or will it?
The latest measure announced by Paula Bennett is the purchase of a Motel to provide emergency beds. But a closer inspection of the details of the deal suggest that the net contribution to the housing supply will be zero and at a considerable cost.
From the Herald:
Housing New Zealand has bought a South Auckland motel to help meet the area’s housing shortage – but ironically the existing residents will have to move out to make room for the homeless.
A spokesman said the agency bought the 10-unit Cimarron Motel in Waterview Rd, Takanini, as “part of our work to make more housing available in Auckland for those who require it urgently”.
But the motel was already being used for long-stay accommodation, and former resident Roland Stehlin said he was worried about what would happen to the remaining residents.
“There’s an elderly couple there who have been there 11 years, they have nowhere to go,” he said.
“We’ve got a family that’s in the house [formerly the manager’s house]. Their kids are all going to the school there. The last I heard was apparently they are going out to Pukekohe, now they have to find some way of getting their kids into school there.”
Previous owner Kamal Matta, who bought the property for $1.6 million in April last year, said most of the previous residents had already moved out.
“Four families are there. The others have all left,” he said.
So a motel originally used for long stay accommodation was sold and seven units stood empty during the sale process. The purchase contract actually made things worse for the supply of housing in the area. And a further four families will be moved on to make room for others once the sale goes through.
The net contribution to Auckland’s housing stock will be zero and the cost will be presumably significantly greater than $1.6 million.
This may provide a good photo op and a headline to spin but this is contributing nothing to the housing crisis.