Here's one economic league table Liarbour has taken New Zealand to the top of- housing UNaffordability.
What a marvellous achievement for Dear Leader and her so-called workers party.
Housing is effectively unaffordable for the bulk of the 'working class'.
Property is now the preserve of the middle class and the rich.
But need it be this way?
Unlike the crowded countries of Europe, like the UK, there is no excuse for New Zealand's housing unaffordability.
We are two large islands with relatively few people.
We have the land and we have the raw materials.
True, rising house prices is largely a global phonemenon, though there are some interesting observations we can make from both the local and global situation.
Globally, many countries have adopted restrictive planning policies to protect the 'green belt' or open countryside. And we in New Zealand have much open space. We have room to breathe.
However, Auckland Regional Council and others strictly control the supply of land for development, so it is obvious the price of land will rise.
And if the price of land goes up, then as an ingredient in the recipe to build a house, it follows the price of the finished house will go up too.
If the planning authority expects the developer to contribute towards the cost of roading or green spaces, then that too is a further cost that will be passed on to the home purchaser.
If new build homes then go up to reflect this, it is inevitable that older homes will increase to match newer home prices.
Much 'smart growth' ideology stems from socialist thinking to force people into high density housing to make public transport more viable. So the socialists not only want to take away your front and back lawn but your car too!
Dear Leader and her government have presided over this situation. They control the Resource Management Act and related issues.
In recent years as the housing affordability issue has worsened and become more widely discussed, Liarbour has consistently ignored the land supply issue.
Instead, it has suggested that developers be forced to set aside a share of homes for low paid groups. This 'affordable homes' policy is what Liarbour in Britain has 'achieved.' But if you force developers to provide 'affordable' housing to certain groups, they can only recoup their lost profits on the shrinking share of open market houses. Thus, to subsidise the cost of 'affordable housing' house prices rise ever further for everyone else, and the spiral continues.
Now, land supply restrictions have made property a one-way bet. This has naturally fuelled property speculation. You can hardly blame people as they see property values ever rising. Liarbour's increase in the top rate of tax when it was elected made propoerty a more viable investment and tax shelter. The favourable allowances regime for landlords remain. So you can see why there has been such a growth in the buy-to-let market at the expense of the poor.
Think about it, here we have a Liarbour government allowing property investors/ speculators to make huge gains at the expense of the young and the poor. Property wealth is being transferred from these groups to the rich and the old. It is widening econiomic divisions. It is the anti -thesis of socialism yet Liarbour policies are fuelling this widening wealth gap.
Of course, the banks have made lending easier too and that has also fuelled growing prices , just as we see the global 'credit crunch' now working the other way, helping force prices down or curbing their rise.
Yet the supply side argument remains. The US has various planning rules across its states amid one banking market and , as Demographia notes, the cities with the most flexible planning regulations tend to have the lowest property prices.
You only look at how Auckland has been flooded with appartments, which as they became too numerous this led to their prices to fall, making them a poor investment. But this highlights how supply is a major factor.
Of course, there are other major factors too in Kiwi housing unaffordability and here Liarbour can take more blame.
Rapidly rising government spending has fuelled interest rates, making them the highest among the developed countries, which of course means higher mortgage rates. Another case of where Liarbour has us at the top of the table.
And as taxes ever rise to pay for this government spending, it means we have less money in our own back pockets to pay for these higher house prices and higher mortgage rates.
Thanks Liarbour your housing policies are just wonderful, hitting the poorest the most, your supposed constituency and voter base.
David Farrar at Kiwiblog has also covered the issue, as as Whale Oil, but for me, Peter Cresswell at Not PC offers the best and most thorough analysys, with his comments on the 'land of milk and honey.'.
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