ASK ME ANYTHING: 'Generation Rent' author Shamubeel Eaqub

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After moving from Wellington to Auckland, controversial economist Shamubeel Eaqub has found himself caught in the housing affordability crisis he comments on.

Last year, he hit headlines with his book Growing Apart and the attendant controversy as he coined the term "zombie town."

Now he's back with a new book, co-authored with his wife Selena (also an economist) that's set to spark more debate: Generation Rent: Rethinking New Zealand's Priorities (click here for an extract).

The Equabs argue there is "a generation facing a market in which housing costs have soared relative to incomes, making the pervasive dream of owning a home either impossible, or blighted by life-long slavery to mortgage debt."

Generation Renters are not just "property orphans" but "cultural orphans," they argue. Impacts of the housing affordability crisis will include increasing inequality and ‘ghettoisation’.

Their work is made more poignant by the fact that they, after arriving in Auckland, are renters themselves.

Shamubeel Eaqub is principal economist at the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research, a leading independent economic research house. Previously he has worked in both the public and private sector as an economist and statistician, most notably at ANZ Bank in both New Zealand and Australia, Statistics New Zealand and Goldman Sachs JB Were.

See readers' questions below, and click the NBR Radio box to hear NBR Radio host Andrew Patterson putting them to Mr Eaqub.

See previous installments of Ask Me Anything by clicking the AMA tab on our menu bar, or bookmarking nbr.co.nz/ask-me-anything.

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