Social Housing Minister Amy Adams has welcomed the 2015 Social Housing Valuation as the first step in building a more sophisticated understanding of the factors that affect vulnerable New Zealanders.

“Our first valuation of New Zealand’s social housing system sets a benchmark to measure progress and understand how effectively new initiatives are helping those most in need,” Ms Adams says.

“The valuation lets us measure success by how we change people’s lives. It is part of our broader Social Investment approach – where we’re building a better understanding of what works and for who, and where to invest funds to make the biggest difference across housing, welfare and the broader social sector.”

The valuation reflects people who were in a social house or on the register from July 2014 to June 2015.

According to the report, the projected lifetime cost of adults in social housing is $16.4 billion. About 85 per cent of this cost relates to future Income-Related Rent Subsidy payments for tenants in social housing. Those in social housing are expected, on average, to spend 17 years in social housing.

Other key findings of the valuation include:

People on Jobseeker or Sole Parent Support are about 70 times more likely to apply for social housing than those not on benefits in the past five years Pacific people are seven times more likely to be in social housing and Māori are five times more likely compared to other ethnicities Auckland is 35 per cent of the population, but 61 per cent of the total liability. The average household liability is 80 per cent higher than the rest of New Zealand.

“With every valuation, we’ll gain more evidence to invest earlier on in the people who need it most, with the support that will make the most difference,” Ms Adams says.

“The more we can support our most vulnerable people to become independent, the better their lives will be. That’s what we’re doing with initiatives such as Housing First and Sustaining Tenancies, and with transitional housing that includes social support as part of the package.

“We want to make sure that vulnerable New Zealanders have a safe, secure place to live, and give them a stable base to access support to become more independent and improve their lives.”

The 2015 valuation can be found at

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