The latest REINZ data out today shows Labour is failing to address New Zealand’s housing shortage, National’s Housing spokesperson Nicola Willis says.
The data shows that between January 2021 and February 2021, median house prices have increased by $50,000, reaching an all-time high of $780,000 nationwide.
Looking at the year-on-year increase since February 2020, median house prices have skyrocketed 22.8 per cent nationwide, with regions like Hawke’s Bay experiencing increases as high as 36.4 per cent, Ms Willis says.
“Labour’s complete failure to address the housing shortage is pushing Kiwis out of the housing market. The average person saving for a standard 20 per cent deposit would have had to have saved an extra $10,000 in cash just last month to keep up with the median house price.
“Since Labour came into power in late-2017, the median house price nationwide has increased nearly 50 per cent, up quarter of a million dollars. It is simply out of control.
“National proposed constructive solutions to address the root causes of New Zealand’s housing emergency and unlock a surge in new house building.
“We have offered to work with the Government on temporary emergency measures like those used after the Canterbury earthquake to make more space available for development. We can’t afford to wait until 2024 for RMA reform to take effect.”
National has also asked the Government explore these immediate actions:
- Strengthen the National Policy Statement on Urban Development: The Government should bring this urgent rezoning of land by local authorities forward, and increase the competitiveness margin, to enable intensification and growth.
- Remove the Auckland Urban Boundary: This arbitrary line has been found to add $50,000 or more to the average cost of houses in Auckland. The Government committed to removing it in 2017 but progress has stalled.
- Make Kāinga Ora capital available to community housing providers: Proven social housing providers have land and consents for new housing projects ready to go. The Government could make these projects happen immediately by releasing some of the taxpayer funding ring-fenced for future social housing.
- Establish a Housing Infrastructure Fund: This would help local government finance the pipes and roads required to accelerate rezoning of land for Greenfields developments.
- Implement new finance models: The Government should work with industry to develop finance models that leverage Accommodation Supplement and Income-Related Rent entitlements to drive new housing development.
“National will continue to put forward constructive ideas to address this country’s housing shortage,” Ms Willis says.