NZ urged to follow Australia's lead on housing

New Zealand should follow Australia's lead and tighten foreign investment rules around housing to make it more affordable for New Zealanders, the Green Party says.

Australia is re-introducing restrictions on foreign home ownership which mean foreign citizens need Foreign Investment Review Board permission to buy houses, and they have to sell them when they quit the country.

"Foreign investors have contributed to the speculative bubble in housing prices in Australia and New Zealand over the last five years," Green Party co-leader Russel Norman said.

"This has made housing expensive and inaccessible for ordinary New Zealanders."

Dr Norman warned investors would opt for New Zealand as a result of the restrictions.

"We need to tighten rules around housing and land in order to help make housing more affordable for New Zealand citizens and residents," he said.


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The Green Party has it wrong. Housing affordability is due to mainly Local Government intervention re: land availability, excessive planning rules and regulations and compliance requirements for the slightest property changes. The Green Party are one of the worst offenders - always seeking to add new regulations and insisting on high density housing and ever increasing green areas (as they know best!).
Don't blame foreign investors - look to your own policies and their unintended consequences. The result is for all to see - poor quality and high costs.

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The role of local government is not relevant to the argument in this article, which in this matter the Greens are correct.

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The Greens have it wrong. The lack of affordability is due to more and more regulations which strangle developers in red tape and local government costs which have blown out of all proportions, allied to delays in the issuing of permits which adds to the holding costs developers have to cover.
If the Greens were really serious about this issue of affordability, they need to start at council level to sort out the burocracy and greed which was given free rein by the previous government passing on the right to tax to local government.

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Good to see someone sticking up for average workers in NZ. What is the point of encouraging foreign investment in residential housing if all it has done is make it more unaffordable for locals? Usually I would think Aussies stupid, but on this point they are actually advanced. Now if they could just learn how to play cricket and not circko.

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Land & housing prices are largely controlled by affordability! There was lots of easy credit given out, to people who were just speculators. The effort of easy money drove prices up, to an unaffordable level. When there was no further capital appreciation to play with, the whole thing came tumbling down.

If you have kept an eye of things, the tumble is still happening, as more and more get made rebundant or can't refinance because no one is prepared to lend them anything.

I buy into foreigns having to have some business exposure, when they are enjoying some of our jems. There are several reasons:
1. By maintaining a vested interest (business) in the country, these foreigns will ensure the economy remains strong; not just strip it through non taxable capital appreciation.
2. You have to look after the people who have to live here. These foreigns can sell up anytime, & leave the wreckage behind.
3. Earning a return here from their business will put a perspective on the price of a home, & keep it affordable for the locals.

Its time we worked out what is valuable in this country. Its our all round temperate climate, water and relatively sparse population. Lets not sell it to foreigners; unless we put a caveat to it.

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Affortability is controlled by speculation and demand. Some people are arguing that there isn't enough available land for development and too much red tape so this is stopping housing developments from occuring, I disagree with this. The reason being because 10 years ago house prices were a lot more affortable and we didn't have so many foriegn investors snapping up our property, and pushing houses prices up beyond anyones reach. We have infact seen more subdivisions being built, most of them have occured around sceanic places like Queenstown, Tauranga, Coromandel, etc which never happened this bad before, and to say there is not enough land avaliable is a bit rich as investors will only snapped up this pushing up house prices again.

We do need a long-term policy that discourages oversea's investors from investing property in NZ, which was the main reason for the housing bubble and to make it easier for working class kiwi and NZ citzens to purchase homes, where house prices are more regulalated.

Prices never rise this much in the UK where there is an even shorter amount of land available for delevopment as they impose strict capital gains tax on investors making, it unattractive to invest property there and NZ should follow suit.

NZ can't afford to consume more of it's land and sceanic places for housing development at the expense of the property developers

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Affortability is controlled by speculation and demand. Some people are arguing that there isn't enough available land for development and too much red tape so this is stopping housing developments from occuring, I disagree with this. The reason being because 10 years ago house prices were a lot more affortable and we didn't have so many foriegn investors snapping up our property, and pushing houses prices up beyond anyones reach. We have infact seen more subdivisions being built, most of them have occured around sceanic places like Queenstown, Tauranga, Coromandel, etc which never happened this bad before, and to say there is not enough land avaliable is a bit rich as investors will only snapped up this pushing up house prices again.

We do need a long-term policy that discourages oversea's investors from investing property in NZ, which was the main reason for the housing bubble and to make it easier for working class kiwi and NZ citzens to purchase homes, where house prices are more regulalated.

Prices never rise this much in the UK where there is an even shorter amount of land available for delevopment as they impose strict capital gains tax on investors making, it unattractive to invest property there and NZ should follow suit.

NZ can't afford to consume more of it's land and sceanic places for housing development at the expense of the property developers

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Wow, what a lot of division on this important issue! Blaming foreigners for investing here is generating more heat than light.

New Zealand cities have abundant supplies of land around their fringes that could be converted from rural use to residential use for about $5k in raw land cost and about $30k in landscaping, streets, stormwater, wastewater, fresh water etc. costs per section, for a total cost of about $35k per house lot. Why are the costs of a residential lot on the fringes closer to $200k rather than $35k? It's not because foreigners are investing here, it is because local government policies do not allow land owners to determine the highest value use of their land.

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Well done David Hillary.

The cost of creating that one new section (development contribution, parks contribution, consents, legal fees, etc etc) all add to the so called value of all existing sections, and then the developer wants to make a margin on all the effort and risk and who can blame him.

That is what causes NZ property prices to inflate, along with excess demand (in the past) for rental investments that help lower your personal tax now in exchange to capital growth that is not taxed in the future.

Greens are looking for something to make them relavent.

and for Ben D, we do not need a regulated house market, we need tax rules that do not reward investments in unproductive assets period. We need regulators that deal to those who rort the system (read Eric, Mark H, Mark B et al in jail).

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Your all wrong. It's simply a situation born of excessive tax breaks. Remove the tax incentive and most "investors" will stop pedling houses that are not fit for chimps to live in.

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As long as that lot of bludgers and no-hopers have a voice in NZ we will never get anywhere,to think that one of the so called co leaders is an Australian is bad enough,the other co-leader is an anarchist?go figure.

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