The government should be allowed to force local authorities to release land for urban development in the face of rampant house-price inflation and current land allocation policies cause “a number of harmful social effects
Meanwhile the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) is investigating a large scale mortgage fraud:
Auckland’s property market and the scale of impending commercial developments represent a key environmental risk,” the SFO said in its 2015 annual report released this week. “We have invested significant resources into investigating a large-scale mortgage fraud involving highly organised teams of property developers, shell company directors, property valuers and lawyers.
Note, it doesnt involve builders or designers who are the ones with personal legal liability attaching to all their work (for ten years).
Last week a $50m apartment development was found to have passed every Council inspection despite shoddy workmanship and obvious failures.
Meanwhile the Bank that capped NZ as a “rockstar economy” has back-tracked somewhat:
HSBC has added New Zealand to a watch-list of nations it has concerns about, which also includes Malaysia, Indonesia and Norway.
In its latest Macro Health Check report, the bank flags concerns about rising house prices in this country, as well as our deep links with China – where growth is slowing – and tumbling dairy prices, according to the Bloomberg news agency.
“Although low-risk, New Zealand may be one to watch,” HSBC economist James Pomeroy is quoted as saying.
If the Government chooses to intervene in the functioning of Auckland, it needs to intervene to ensure ALL of it functions well. That includes public transport, sewerage and so forth. Picking and choosing will end in disaster. It also needs to explain why it continues to choose to let developers use shell companies, collect money, sell property, remove profit, close company and repeat, all while escaping genuine legal liability for projects they control and direct (financially at least).
IF developers were to be personally liable, as builders and designers are, we would see a drop off in development by some operators. Just as liability for builders and designers was intended to get rid of the cowboys.
There are some great developers out there. There are awful developers. From my work in the leaky home area I know of developers who budgeted and designed projects with the ten year limitation period in mind. They told me “we just spent enough to get us through the ten years”.
Section 393 of the Building Act 2004 provides that no court case dealing with building construction may be brought against a person, 10 or more years after the building was constructed.
Everything I see and hear in the Building Industry worries me. If anything has been learned from building over 100,000 leaky homes in Auckland, it is how to build to get past that period… and not much more by those who think only about maximizing their own profit.
The signs are all there. Those with vested interests will try to convince people that this is all isolated. I’m not convinced. Trouble lies ahead.