23 Apr 2015

Offshore ad says Auckland 'investors' dream'

7:39 am on 23 April 2015

A property investment company does not believe its advert selling Auckland property as a cash cow for offshore landlords is exploiting New Zealanders.

Auckland housing, pictured from Mt Eden.

A view of Auckland housing from Mt Eden. Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

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The radio advert has been on air in Singapore since Monday for Property Solutions Singapore, which is a subsidiary of Dunedin-based company Australian Property Solutions.

It said investors can take advantage of a lack of taxes and reap hundreds of dollars from New Zealanders' weekly pay packets.

"If you happen to own an apartment in Auckland, New Zealand, the high rent returns, other people's money, around half a week's pay for most people, could be paid to you as rent every week," it states.

"Now many people invest in Auckland because of the high demand for rents, there's no SAB duty, no land tax and within New Zealand generally no capital gains tax either, it's an investors' dream and very affordable."

The company's director Lyndon Fairbairn told Morning Report that was just the nature of the business and had nothing to do with the location of the investor or renter.

"Be it a New Zealand property investor buying an Auckland property or a foreign investor, you're getting someone else to go to work to pay your rental," he said.

"The average New Zealand income's about $990 a week, and the rental's about $500 a week so it's pretty factual."

Mr Fairbairn said it was only selling plans for new properties and buyers were adding housing to the New Zealand market.

"We focus purely on the CBD Auckland property region. We don't sell big hunks of land, beaches or existing property. I think there's a bit of a fine line there, if you are selling existing property to someone overseas you're adding zero value or benefit to the New Zealand economy."

He said it would also help create jobs for locals.

"There's a whole building industry that relies on people building properties; it's employing Kiwis. So you're actually contributing a lot of money to the New Zealand economy when someone from overseas buys brand new property."

However, the Green Party said the advertisement highlighted weaknesses in the country's overseas investment laws.

Its housing spokesperson Kevin Hague said offshore investors would view New Zealand as an easy mark and young property owners would miss out.

"Young New Zealanders are having to pay those rapidly-rising rents, and they're being completely priced out of ever owning their own homes," he said.

"Everyday New Zealanders aren't suckers - they know this situation is wrong and unfair."

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