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Political Party Comparison of Affordable Housing Policies

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Here it is. A comparison of the affordable housing policies from the three main New Zealand political parties. While National and Labour target 1,000 houses per year, the Green’s proposal targets 3,000 units per year plus another 1,000 per year through funding provided to third sector organsiation. The estimated demand of housing in New Zealand is about 10,000 new homes per year.

National Party LogoNational Party Housing Policy

The emphasis from National is freeing up more land and reducing consenting costs. Detailed information can be found here:

Policy Focus

Improving the efficiency of the market by;

  • Increasing land supply
  • Reducing consent costs (that might be imposed by lengthy Resource Management Act – RMA processes)

Other key points

  • Funding more road and pipes to service new subdivisions
  • Centralising the building consent process and other measure to improve the productivity of the construction sector


  • 2,000 houses over the next two financial years


  • $40 million in Budget 2011 to facilitate growth of social housing providers
  • Continue Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart scheme ($347 million)


  • By the end of 2013, insulate every state house built before 1978 that can be practically insulated.

Labour Party LogoLabour Party

The Labour Party recently launched their ‘KiwiBuild’ scheme and is aimed at producing a large number of entry-level houses.

Policy Focus

  • Addressing a barrier to entry into the housing market due to a lack of new entry-level houses
  • Utilising the scale of the Crown budget to influence the market
  • Estimating lowest possible building cost of $300,000 per house

Other key points

  • Implementation relies on partnership with private sector, community agencies and local government
  • 2/3 of homes during the first 5 years to be building in Auckland


  • 10,000 houses per year for 10 years


  • $1.5 billion initial investment
  • KiwiBuild designed to be self sustaining and have a net zero cost to the Crown


Green Party LogoGreen Party

The Green Party essentially supports Labour’s KiwiBuild proposal saying that their progressive ownership model would be compatible. It’s aim is to allow families to gradually buy their home over about 25 years, while paying minimal servicing fees. It also limits speculation by not allowing a home within the scheme to be sub-let.

Policy Focus

  • Progressive ownership model (see below)
  • Housing is a social good and a basic right
  • Development should optimise land use, reduce car use and be built to sustainable principles

Other key points

  • Facilitate more flexible housing options such as co-operative housing, eco-villages, shared ownership and papakainga housing
  • Create a legally binding duty not he public sector to ensure housing needs are met
  • Support their sector organisations working ofr homeless people
  • Reduce speculative investment


  • 3,000 states houses to be built or acquired per year
  • 1,000 units per year for three years
  • Houses built for up to $300,000
  • Families would make weekly payments of $200 to cover the Crown investment, plus around $100 per week to gradually buy equity in the property


  • Develop a sustainable building strategy with standards for building materials
  • Ensure that district plans facilitate solar and/or wind energy
  • Ensure that all new buildings conform to sustainable building principles
  • Increase programmes to improve existing buildings
  • Encourage new developments to be designed to minimise car use
  • Work with local authorities to minimise both sprawl and overcrowding

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