30 Aug 2017

Know your policy: Housing

From Election17 - Policy Comparisons, 11:11 am on 30 August 2017

Rental laws, housing quality and soaring house prices and shortages have made housing one of the defining issues of the 2017 election. What will the parties do to fix the problem?

No caption

Photo: AFP


  • Create special housing areas in high demand areas 
  • $1 billion Housing Infrastructure Fund to accelerate new housing 
  • Set up independent Urban Development Authorities to speed up housing development 
  • Reform the Resource Management Act to simplify housing consents and building
  • Tightened rules to ensure property speculators pay their fair share of tax


  • Kiwibuild programme of building 100,000 high quality and affordable homes over 10 years
  • Establish an Affordable Housing Authority to help the private sector get new homes built faster 
  • Remove the Auckland urban growth boundary and free up density controls
  • Ban foreign speculators from buying existing homes
  • Extend the bright-line test from the current two years to five years and stop property speculators from offsetting tax losses on their rentals
  • Turn Housing New Zealand into a public service, and increase the number of state houses

Green Party

No caption

Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

  • Make 10,000 new homes over ten years available to people who can't afford a deposit or a normal commercial mortgage, through rent-to-buy arrangements.
  • Community housing providers will be able to purchase 5000 newly built, energy-efficient homes through the progressive ownership programme
  • Issue low-interest loans to community housing providers to build new, energy efficient homes
  • Create a scheme to allow student loan borrowers to defer paying back their student loan to help them save for a house

New Zealand First

  • Provide government assistance for first home buyers and sell residential sections under long-term agreements to first home buyers, on a cost recovery basis
  • Establish a new state agency to acquire land where Special Housing Areas have been designated
  • Encourage smaller and more affordable houses on smaller sections and require better building quality
  • Ban foreigners from buying residential property
  • Every home to have compulsory and adequate insurance cover
  • Encourage private investment in upgrading rental housing through the taxation system


  • A major overhaul of the Resource Management Act so that enough houses can be built to meet the current housing shortage
  • Remove the large cities from the Resource Management Act, and create separate urban development legislation to prioritise land supply and cut red tape for developers
  • Share a portion of the GST revenue collected from the construction of new housing with local councils to incentivise them to consent more land for development and build more infrastructure
  • Replace council building inspections and compliance with a mandatory private insurance regime for buildings

Māori Party

A builder cutting polystyrene used for insulation and foundation footings on a new home in Upper Hutt.

Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

  • Create a Minister for Māori and Pacific Housing
  • Develop a national housing strategy
  • Require the government to set a target to eliminate homelessness by 2020
  • Build 90,000 affordable houses by 2022 (60,000 in Auckland and 30,000 in other areas)
  • Introduce a cap on rent increases for all state-owned social housing stock and explore rent caps for private rentals.
  • Compulsory annual warrant of fitness for all rental homes
  • Enable whānau to capitalise on their family support allowance as a deposit for a home
  • Introduce options for 'rent to buy' and 'equity financing' for first time home buyers, and provide low interest loans
  • Subsidise private developers to include a percentage of affordable housing in their projects

United Future

  • Make 10,000 of the planned 34,000 new houses in Auckland rental properties part of a rent-to-own scheme
  • Allow a Working for Families recipient to withdraw their annual entitlement in one lump sum to pay a home deposit

Get the RNZ app

for easy access to all your favourite programmes