Labour’s proposed ban on foreigners buying houses

July 29th, 2013 at 5:19 am by David Farrar

The Herald reports:

Minister Nick Smith said it was a sign of how desperate and Mr Shearer had become.

“The oldest trick in the political book, whether it be over crime or unemployment or affordable housing, is always to blame the foreigners.

“There’s no evidence that overseas buyers are having any discernible affect over house prices.”

It was an “unprincipled” policy because it exempted Australia, Dr Smith said.

“They are the largest group of non-resident home buyers.”

Property commentator Olly Newland said the policy would not work.

Australians would be exempted from the scheme, because of a reciprocal arrangement where New Zealanders were able to buy properties there.

Mr Newland said that made the policy “a bit of a nonsense” because Australians bought the highest number of properties here of all foreign buyers.

“Secondly, of course, any overseas buyer would very quickly find somebody else to buy a house for them here in their name and hold it in trust for them.

“There are a thousand ways to get around it if they want to come here,” he said.

“It sounds good but in practice it just won’t work.”

Sounds attractive to some, but likely to make almost no difference. Increasing the supply of land for housing is what will make the largest difference to house prices.

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131 Responses to “Labour’s proposed ban on foreigners buying houses”

  1. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    “but likely to make almost no difference”
    I dont understand how you think removing about 10% of the market will make almost no difference.
    Im glad you didnt use the ridiculous xenophobic response

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  2. Steve Wrathall (285 comments) says:

    And did u see Shearer on Breakfast TV this morning?: “We’re putting NEW ZEALANDers FIRST….” Can the guy get any more farcical?

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  3. flipper (4,217 comments) says:

    There you go again martinh….

    Yesterday you finally admitted that you were miffed that you could not purchase your over-priced Auckland dream house. So for you all this is strictly personal, not business ( to twist the saying).

    Your 10 % seems somewhat removed from reality as disclosed by the BNZ 3%. Moreover, as Ollie Newland says, one can “drive a truck” through the proposal by using trustee buyers.

    Time to get off your horse martinh…or get it supported by the NP Nelson conference next month. But of course it is too late for that since the remits have all been circulated, have they not?

    This labour/red melon policy is a crock, and apart from TV, the MSM seem to be treating as it deserves. Yawaaawn.

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  4. Lance (2,715 comments) says:

    I propose something radical to fix this…..

    Build more homes!

    Seems to be too hard a concept for the left

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  5. WineOh (630 comments) says:

    It won’t make a difference to a determined buyer with domestic contacts, but may prevent a handful of some of the people that we want to retain here- highly skilled migrants on work Visas. How many of the folks working on WETA LOTR movies & the like are permanent residents?

    Certainly seems like a cynical play that I would expect out of Winston Peter’s play book.

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  6. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Flipper
    “Moreover, as Ollie Newland says, one can “drive a truck” through the proposal by using trustee buyers.”

    As i showed by shooting down the tax property lawyer yesterday Nickb in the general debate this is not true and shows what a self interested idiot Olly is to come out and say something thats not true.

    And yes i am miffed and so a lots of other Aucklanders

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  7. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    At least Labour the Greens and NZ First are sending a message: THIS IS OUR COUNTRY.

    The data on foreign ownership is collected since national got rid of the Housing Research Bureau.

    NZ is only 0.7% urbanised… so you could double the size of our towns and we would still be a miniscuple 1.7% urbanised….. and Auckland would only be twice as spread out…. wtf for?

    To me a New Zealander is someone who sat on the car bonnet and watched the Queen go by, listened to Selwyn Toogood, rode the Ferris wheel at the A&P show. A Kiwi who lives in Japan for 10 years isn’t considered Japanese. NZ has become a doormat in accordance with the wishes of the realestate industry and the open borders left-wing.

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  8. Colville (2,300 comments) says:

    This stupid proposal will do 2 obvious things and fuck all else.
    A. Make lawyers richer and B. Create a pool of rich tennants that need a nice house to wait till their paperwork is sorted.

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  9. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Flipper
    To summarize a trust can always be traced back to the beneficiary, if they are overseas then they wont be able to buy.
    If someone in NZ got money transfered to NZ to buy a house on their behalf then that will be picked up by the financial transactions overveiw system in NZ and that person will be charged income tax on it.

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  10. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Colville.
    Thats better than lots of rental payments going overseas, and NZer having to increase their mortgages to get a house

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  11. Colville (2,300 comments) says:

    my edit wouldnt work…

    I thunked of a third thing :-)

    It will create a new job for cunning immigrants “housing consultant”.
    So a failed or banned realestate agent that knows the system will work as a go between to assist purchasers into a home that because of this law they couldnt otherwise purchase. Handling vast sums and cash and bribes having no trust account, regulations or oversight. What could possibly go wrong?

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  12. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    If we had land taxes we could all benefit from population induced land inflation. The Property Council opposes it as “unworkable” because there are two many groups getting out of it. They don’t otherwise address the merits just the difficulties. If we disincentivised those the fruits of land inflation we would see (as Warren Buffet put it) who is swimming naked.

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  13. Colville (2,300 comments) says:

    martinh.
    How will the rental pool change anything?
    If Number One Son “owns’ 20 rentals in Auckland funded by Wealthy Dad who lives and works in Guangzhou there is fuck all you can do about it.

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  14. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    Moreover, as Ollie Newland says, one can “drive a truck” through the proposal by using trustee buyers.

    Really? Thats interesting flipper. Who would have thought? And from one of NZ’s top property commentators?

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  15. RRM (10,022 comments) says:

    What about houses that already belong to Johnny Foreigner?

    Are Labour going to paint ACHTUNG! JUDEN! on the fronts of them?

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  16. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    Lance (2,054) Says:
    July 29th, 2013 at 7:52 am
    I propose something radical to fix this…..

    Build more homes!
    ………………..

    So who pays for the infrastructure associated with population growth “80% from off shore over the last 20 years”? How do you propose we provide energy?

    Savings Working Group
    January 2011
    “The big adverse gap in productivity between New Zealand and other countries opened up from the 1970s to the early 1990s. The policy choice that increased immigration – given the number of employers increasingly unable to pay First-World wages to the existing population and all the capital requirements that increasing populations involve – looks likely to have worked almost directly against the adjustment New Zealand needed to make and it might have been better off with a lower rate of net immigration. This adjustment would have involved a lower real interest rate (and cost of capital) and a lower real exchange rate, meaning a more favourable environment for raising the low level of productive capital per worker and labour productivity. The low level of capital per worker is a striking symptom of New Zealand’s economic challenge.

    http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/reviews-consultation/savingsworkinggroup/pdfs/swg-report-jan11.pdf
    http://www.treasury.govt.nz/downloads/pdfs/mi-jarrett-comm.pdf

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  17. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Colville
    “there is fuck all you can do about it”
    well unless hes sneaking bags of cash in across the border to pay for it he will have to pay tax on this money from overseas to buy the houses. If he wants to then buy 20 then so be it.

    RPM please dont be perverse, ive jewish roots

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  18. Colville (2,300 comments) says:

    RRM.

    and badges with a yellow 5 point star that will be used now rather than the previously favoured yellow 6 point star.

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  19. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Such bans exist in most other countries..We would only be fitting in with the international community by bringing in such bans,..It is only in silly , spineless little countries like NZ that foreigners endlessly come first.

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  20. Colville (2,300 comments) says:

    martinh.
    Bullshit.
    Unless I have missed somewhere that Liarbore is also undertaking an overhaul of our entire banking system?

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  21. Cunningham (846 comments) says:

    Why exclude Australia??? Just makes their policy look absolutely rediculious as they are the main overseas buyers. They say it’s because we have a reciprocal agreement with them but we would buy hardly any properties over there compared to them buying here. Another stupid policy by Labour, as if they needed any more of those!

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  22. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    martinh.
    Bullshit.
    Unless I have missed somewhere that Liarbore is also undertaking an overhaul of our entire banking system?

    Well Colville, if you pop over to yesterday’s GD and read martin’s posts, you would be forgiven for thinking a government official scrutinises every NZ bank transaction that occures

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  23. RRM (10,022 comments) says:

    joana – in what way do “foreigners come first” in New Zealand?

    Please explain.

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  24. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Nickb, Colville
    Im not going into this anymore as if you think that people can transfer hundreds of thousands into NZ with all the anti money laundering rules you a ignorant and i cant be bothered debating with you anymore.
    Read this and then i suppose you will go change your username as everyone will forever know how uninformed you a and not worth listening too
    http://www.fma.govt.nz/media/361876/amlroadshow-slidesandnotes-15august2011.pdf

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  25. smttc (763 comments) says:

    martinh, do you realise how stupid and ignorant your comments are 8.02am are? Income tax on lump sums coming into NZ. What a load of crap. You clearly have no understanding of the income tax system. It is an income tax system. Not an incoming capital tax system.

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  26. Simon Arnold (109 comments) says:

    The funny thing is that there are two markets in operation here, the market for houses and the market for accommodation. Both are constrained by lack of supply in some locations, and that is inflating the price (more so houses). Reducing the demand for houses by excluding some buyers of existing homes may encourage these buyers into building new, but it is this market that the other constraints are greatest (lack of land, shortage of construction capability). The price of building new houses will be bid up further.

    Meanwhile the accommodation supply will not have changed so rents won’t drop. In fact to the extent that the outlook for capital gains are possibly reduced for existing housing investors they will tend to increase rents (something they can do in a constrained market) to compensate.

    So the upshot – more pressure on scarce land and construction resources and upward pressure on rents.

    As someone said above – better to focus on reducing the constraints on providing new housing stock.

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  27. Black with a Vengeance (1,866 comments) says:

    Foreigners buy houses, kiwis buy homes…without an emotional investment, it just becomes another tradeable commodity fast becoming priced out of ordinary New Zealanders reach.

    Its about time we started putting hard working Kiwi battlers at the front of the queue.

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  28. alex Masterley (1,523 comments) says:

    martinh also has no idea about trusts either.

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  29. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Labour has tapped into a groundswell of opinion by introducing this..Just because NZers are not allowed to publicly say things does not mean they don’t think them..Bill English’s tired , rather worn out ..it is supply problem message sounded very tired and worn out on telly this morning..This govt did away with the housing research unit so no one know the facts..English was quoting a BNZ survey..others are quoting real estate agents..How can the govt have any kind of realistic policy when it doesn’t have the facts and has to rely on the musings of a foreign owned bank? What a mickey mouse outfit.

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  30. smttc (763 comments) says:

    Anyway martinh, Shearer said on moaning report this morning that it would be up to lawyers to certify that the purchase was within the rules. Clearly Labour will not be relying on border authorities to enforce this seriously stupid policy.

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  31. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    smttc
    So how do you get this money into NZ without going into someones bank account?

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  32. slijmbal (1,236 comments) says:

    Having failed to get any of the Green’s votes by stealing their policies Labour have decided to go after the Winston First Party’s voters.

    Would be sad if it wasn’t so funny.

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  33. Cunningham (846 comments) says:

    martinh (266) you mention removing 10% of the market (a figure that seems dubious at best). You forgot to mention AU will be exempt so it wouldn’t be anywhere near this. Do you think it is right for AU to be exempt? If they actually had a pair, they would exclude ALL foreigners but as usual (same with the CGT where they exclude 75% of the market with it not applying to the family home) they show they are only interested in getting into power. How can anyone possibly have respect for Labour? NZ deserves a better opposition party.

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  34. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    smttc
    Reread the debate from yesterday. I said lawyers should do this and that the fact money coming into NZ is scrutinised there are not ways around it which are not deliberately illegal such as smuggling money through customs

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  35. Colville (2,300 comments) says:

    martinh.

    Yoy really are full of shit.

    My bro in law just moved $800K from the USA to here with the click of a mouse. No one batted an eye.

    arent parents allowed to lend their kids a few (million) bucks? where is the law that says no?

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  36. Odakyu-sen (752 comments) says:

    Simply build more houses. It’s not like there’s a physical shortage of land. (Legal shortage, maybe…). Promote local sub-centres like Manukau City. (Why all try to jam the motorway into the Auckland CBD each day?)

    Saying that “foreigners only make up x% of buyers” could be misleading if each “foreigner” has many times the purchasing power of a typical 30-something Local Guy (a native Aucklander) who only has a net worth of $100,000. If I (Johnny Foreigner) have $1,000,000 at my disposal, then I can buy ten times the properties of Mr. Local Guy.

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  37. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Cunningham
    Yes aus exempt
    All these issues were debated yesterday, im not going to anwer any questions that were covered yesterday as people now have my opinion on it and can make up their own minds, i cant be stuffed rabbitting on to the xsame questions ive answered factually

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  38. smttc (763 comments) says:

    martinh, money comes into NZ bank accounts all the time by international money transfer. Our international obligations with respect to money laundering aside, do you really think anyone including the government gives a shit about an increase in overseas funds coming into NZ? Really?

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  39. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Colville.,
    That would of being your brothers money, ho do you know it wassnt scutinised?
    theres gift tax in NZ. the ird can decide if its a loan or a gift

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  40. jaba (2,146 comments) says:

    great stuff by Shearer .. that should keep him as leader until next year at least .. let’s focus on the Greens

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  41. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    Everyone who hasn’t read yesterday’s GD, it is clear martin is a left wing plant from the standard sent to annoy us.

    After ranting about commies under the beds stealing our homes all day yesterday, he revealed he was about to leave his bach for the weekend…. this greedy rich prick has 2 homes!! Lynch him and confiscate one! (oh, he also supported confiscation of foreigner’s property without compensation in some circumstances).

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  42. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Smttc,
    well if this policy was enacted with respect to housing i would say yes definitely and also current anti laundering rules means we are obliged to “give a shit'”

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  43. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    theres gift tax in NZ. the ird can decide if its a loan or a gift

    That got repealed almost 2 years ago you ignoramus. Have you been living in outer space?

    http://www.ird.govt.nz/technical-tax/legislation/2011/2011-63/2011-63-gift-duty/

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  44. smttc (763 comments) says:

    martinh, I’m a lawyer and can tell you right now, if Labour leaves it up to me and my ilk to enforce this policy then they are doomed to fail. Naivety in the extreme. It is just another bullshit dog whistle policy which has not been though out properly.

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  45. flipper (4,217 comments) says:

    RRM (7,664) Says:

    July 29th, 2013 at 8:12 am
    What about houses that already belong to Johnny Foreigner?

    Are Labour going to paint ACHTUNG! JUDEN! on the fronts of them?

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    <<<>>>

    Excellent point.
    Wish I had thought of that RRM .

    martinh needs to give it up…

    I think I will look to Alex Mast… for advice rather than one or two others,..

    Move your shingle away from Auckland martinh and you be able to buy a much bigger, and much better, dream home for your available $s. Of course, you could try for a late remit to the NP conf. :)

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  46. smttc (763 comments) says:

    lol, martinh thinks we have gift duty in NZ.

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  47. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Nickb
    From that article
    However, requirements to ensure the legal certainty of gifts, such as deeds of gift for trusts, are unchanged!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  48. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    Martin, I was responding to a comment in which you said there is a gift tax. I pointed out that was repealed nearly 2 years ago. So what on earth are you talking about now? I didn’t say anything about deeds.

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  49. smttc (763 comments) says:

    lol, even when we had gift duty, it invariably did not apply to money coming into the country because the donor was not domiciled here.

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  50. Nostalgia-NZ (5,281 comments) says:

    There wouldn’t be many, if any, Auckland sellers or even owners that are seeing the value of their homes increase that are ‘miffed.’

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  51. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    martin also indicated yesterday that he only wants the Chan Ban because he is upset and not being able to “upgrade” his Auckland house. In other words, another yuppie with Ponsonby envy.

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  52. Colville (2,300 comments) says:

    martinh.
    As long as the dosh has been earned (or borrowed) legally in another country (lets say China ! *gasp*) then there is ZERO that the NZ govt can or will do to stop that dosh comming here…. and how a family decides to spend its own money that is derived thru legal sources is not YET under the microscope of the communist LP/Gween cabal.

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  53. Paulus (2,665 comments) says:

    Am about to register my new NZ Company, as I am a Citizen.
    Its objective is to supply to overseas house property purchasers a place where I will invest for them for any house they wish to buy.
    They will take shares in my company and put the purchase price money into our legal Trust account, from which the Trust will buy the house of their wish. They will not be seen as an owner, only a shareholder in a Trust account.
    Solicitors do not have to be involved as there are no special secrets to property transfer.
    The Trust will then lease in perpetuity that house.
    All rates and outgoings will be paid by the Trust, funded by the Shareholder, de facto owner.
    This appears only to apply to Chinese buyers and Poms, as Aussies are exempt as are all those as with resident status, or intended resident status.
    Looks like Labour playing to Winston this time as well as the Greens and Mana.
    Too easy to subvert. Typical Labour, no business experience.
    Ollie Newman has it right too.

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  54. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Nickb
    From the IRD
    Income tax implications
    The abolition of gift duty does not have any impact on income tax anti-avoidance rules. As has always been the case, a gift may be deemed to be part of a wider arrangement of tax avoidance under section BG 1 of the Income Tax Act 2007.

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  55. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Colville
    No, if that person is getting lots of money from overseas from someone else it can be classified as income and taxed

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  56. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    Now you are bringing the tax avoidance laws into it??? What on earth does that have to do with foreigners bringing money into the country???!!!!

    As a commenter has already pointed out, there is no tax on bringing capital into the country. I think you are digging into something you really have no idea about. Did you seriously just pick a random page from IRD’s website and thought it might apply??!!

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  57. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    RRM..Sorry I haven’t got three hours..
    The other guy who mentioned dog whistling..Unfortunately for the Nats, it is a policy which appeals to many NZers.. They won’t be bothered by the details. The guys writing on here are not representative of the wider NZ population.

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  58. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Nostagklia
    There will be many who will be miffed who cant upgrade as they need another room for a new baby

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  59. alex Masterley (1,523 comments) says:

    getting a bit desperate there martinh.
    it’s all about structure. in the unlikely event the Labia policy comes into effect it will have been dissected, analysed and structures devised to avoid it.

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  60. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Alex
    And i would enjoy creating a law to stop the avoidance :)

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  61. flipper (4,217 comments) says:

    It is not us folks…it is martinh….

    He clearly does not understand the difference between income and capital.

    Now what was it the children’s book said about trolls, billy goat Gruff, and bridges?

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  62. alex Masterley (1,523 comments) says:

    sorry martinh laws have been enacted to stop things for centuries.
    They very rarely achieve the outcome intended.

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  63. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Fair point Alex but id like to try

    Bulgaris concedes the plan would halve his income- newstalkzb

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  64. smttc (763 comments) says:

    joana, this policy will only appeal to xenophobes and voters who are not on the property ladder. Not a big enough pool of voters and likely to be Labour, Green or NZ First voters already.

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  65. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Smttc
    Can you please explain what you mean by xenophobic?

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  66. wreck1080 (3,966 comments) says:

    I think this is a good law, if it only applied to Auckland.

    Just look at Vancouver (see below), where the average house price is now 1.25 million NZD.

    At least, this could be a temporary law until the supply shortages are sorted.

    It does make you ask why the reserve bank have not increased interest rates already — surely they are bordering on incompetence? This would also make petrol more affordable and flatscreen TV’s too.

    ….

    Vancouver has become such a popular destination for overseas investment that locals can scarcely afford the price of an average house in the city.

    And because many of the new flats in some areas are purchased by investors who then leave them empty, local businesses are having a hard time surviving.

    On paper, Vancouver is not a wealthy city. But it is a city that is attractive to wealthy overseas buyers, mostly from mainland China, who are driving up prices. Unable to afford real estate, the locals are struggling, and the numbers tell the story.

    The average selling price of a small house in Vancouver is more than US$1 million, according to the Royal LePage House Price Survey released in April. The average income in Vancouver is US$41,176 a year, according to the most recent figures. With that income, it’s almost impossible to purchase a detached house.

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  67. flipper (4,217 comments) says:

    Bulgaris concedes the plan would halve his income- newstalkzb

    <<>>>

    When did that failure return to “expert” status?
    But if he were to be telling the truth, what would it mean?
    Zip.

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  68. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Flipper
    It means theres a significant amount of foreign non Australian buying through him at least

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  69. Griff (8,194 comments) says:

    And i would enjoy creating a law to stop the avoidance
    And for every new law= new avoidance until it becomes a unworkable joke.
    Simple tax laws with no loopholes and exceptions for special interest groups.
    Decreases cost of compliance is a fuck of a lot easier to police and takes income from accountants and lawyers.

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  70. wreck1080 (3,966 comments) says:

    “Your 10 % seems somewhat removed from reality as disclosed by the BNZ 3%. Moreover, as Ollie Newland says, one can “drive a truck” through the proposal by using trustee buyers.”

    If people try to drive a truck through then you erect truck barriers!!!

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  71. RRM (10,022 comments) says:

    So you’ve got time to make huge claims like “foreigners come first” but you haven’t got time to say what that actually means…

    :neutral: Righto…

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  72. smttc (763 comments) says:

    martinh, morbid dislike or mistrust of foreigners. Consistent with “putting New Zealanders first”. Morbid in this case because it is based on some bullshit notion that they are stealing all our houses.

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  73. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    smttc
    Prove to me that they are not outbidding lots of NZers.
    Dont we need a proper survey to find that out which Key refuses to do?

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  74. davidp (3,588 comments) says:

    It’s ironic that this policy comes from a man who choses to invest HIS money in another country. Apparently Shearer investing his savings overseas is okay. But a Chinese person investing his savings overseas is bad.

    But… Wouldn’t an easier solution involve reinstating poll taxes on Chinese people?

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  75. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Smttc
    Not wanting NZers to be outbid is not a dislike of foreigners so you and Key need to find a circumspect angle to stop this gaining traction

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  76. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Yesterday I commented that we should be questioning what other morals and ideas David Shearer has in common with Enoch Powell.

    I deeply regret getting that so wrong – as someone pointed out to me last night, Shearer is such a spineless and vapid excuse for a man that he would better described as Eunuch Powell.

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  77. RF (1,453 comments) says:

    davidp. 9.28pm. Nice one. I see the media have overlooked the fact Shearer invests his hundreds of thousands of dollars overseas but will not allow overseas people the same advantage by buying housing here.

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  78. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Rf
    Did Shearer do it in housing???
    Anyhow I applaude those foriegers for investing here, it shows that they can see a loophole and go for it, well done, Its our piss poor government not protecting us from it that i have the problem with

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  79. RF (1,453 comments) says:

    martinh 9.41am. You would never know with shearer. some many double standards. suggest it should read .. piss poor governments not protecting us .. as the other lot also allowed this.

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  80. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    RF
    So they shouldnt do something now about it. Thats a useless point you made
    Over and out

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  81. RF (1,453 comments) says:

    martinh.. 9.52am. all quiet over on the standard ?

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  82. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Whats the standard?

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  83. Drake (1 comment) says:

    Surely this would result in a breach of every free trade agreement signed aside from ANZCERTA. Can somebody please ask David Shearer how he reconciles his proposal with (to pick an example) article 11 of the China / New Zealand FTA: “Each Party shall accord to investors, investments and activities associated with such investments by investors of the other Party treatment no less favourable than that accorded, in like circumstances, to the investments and associated activities by the investors of any third country with respect to admission, expansion, management, conduct, operation, maintenance, use, enjoyment and disposal.”

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  84. Ross12 (1,455 comments) says:

    With this ,David Shearer is being set up ( from within ).

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  85. smttc (763 comments) says:

    martinh, it’s not my job to prove a negative. It is you who is all for this bullshit policy. So you prove to me that the outbidding is the serious problem you suggest instead of just being the good little head nodder that Shearer hopes you will be.

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  86. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Smttc
    A register of buyers stating if NZ residents/citizens/Australians or elsewhere

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  87. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    According to Shearer on Marcus Lushs program the govt actually stopped this register as it was in the process of doing so….

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  88. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Those two people who ticked dislike can you please explain why you wouldnt want to know this information?
    Do you want to be misinformed?
    Are you pleased the govt didnt want you knowing this info?

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  89. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    This is a globalisation issue. Some people benefit directly from money flowing in from overseas. Some people would claim that everyone benefits in some nebulous way because that person will /may reinvest locally… or they may retire to the Gold Coast. Globalisation encompasses the erosion of borders so trade is regional or between groups (Kiwi home owner Harcourts Shanghai) and the low income landless don’t come into the loop. There is an economic value to being a member of a nation and the policies we are pursuing erode that. National favours powerful business interests and homeowners watching values rise. Labour is hamstrung by it’s priests…. open borders is the next gay rights.

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  90. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    What do you say to this, Martin?

    The Labour leader put foreign ownership figures at between 7% to 10%.

    However, Barfoot & Thompson’s managing director Peter Thompson put the number of foreign buyers at around 4%.

    “About 40% of people who are buying at auction are of asian decent, but of that, the majority of them are actually New Zealand residents or are born here.

    “So I’m not sure where this policy is actually going to go,” Mr Thompson said.

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  91. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    Westpac economists said it isn’t land supply that is forcing up house prices but expectations of price increases, after all population increase** is** government policy and John Banks calls the extra million expected to settle in Auckland a “great opportunity”… for developers and investors.

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  92. Lance (2,715 comments) says:

    @hj
    So if enough land was made available to satisfy demand, prices would go up stratosphericly anyway?

    I call bullshit on that.

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  93. davidp (3,588 comments) says:

    martinh>Those two people who ticked dislike can you please explain why you wouldnt want to know this information? Do you want to be misinformed? Are you pleased the govt didnt want you knowing this info?

    I didn’t click anything. But I’m opposed to collecting race based statistics when there is no need. It’s reminiscent of countries that put people’s race or religion on their ID card, or want to measure how many people with dark skin dare to live in “white” neighbourhoods. Ultimately you want to identify people and the things that they do in order to whip up crude nationalistic hatred of them.

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  94. m@tt (631 comments) says:

    Why do the commentators on here seem to think it must be build more homes OR restrict foreign speculators. Are they suggesting we should have to build more homes so we can accommodate the speculators? Why not improve the supply and demand issue at both ends of the equation.

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  95. Griff (8,194 comments) says:

    Every policy the baby boomers bring in to prop up their unsustainable future has distortions to our future that they refuse to acknowledge
    The younger people being excluded from the housing market by speculation on ongoing exponential capital gains.
    The very same demographic that will be paying for their future health care both by government tax and exorbitant rents due to the struggle to make a real return in an overheated property bubble.
    The zoning policy are captured buy the same interests protecting their leafy suburbs lifestyle plots and vacation homes from being accessible to more New Zealanders.

    Meantime our culture and society is being irrecoverably changed by a rapid influx of immigrants from unpalatable cultures. Imported mainly to provide low skill taxi drivers and cleaners so depress wagers in a economy with 9% unemployment already.

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  96. Pete George (23,685 comments) says:

    An emailed comment:

    Labour Housing Policy restricting overseas purchasers is causing widespread resentment amongst immigrant communities, including traditional Labour supporters, because (besides racist overtones) it is very common for well-off family overseas to buy homes for their NZ-resident relatives.

    e.g. Successful business owners (who have no wish to emigrate) helping recently graduated and/or married son or daughter now resident in NZ, but obviously unable to afford to buy for many years.

    Most immigrants to NZ from East Asia, Indian subcontinent & SE Asia come from business or professional families and have tertiary qualifications, in order to have meet migration criteria.

    Either Labour haven’t thought this policy through very well (wouldn’t be the first time) or they are gambling they will pick up more support than they will lose.

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  97. backster (2,185 comments) says:

    Perhaps the proposition may have some value applied as a temporary measure to Auckland and Christchurch, but why penalise struggling cities such as Wanganui ,Gisborne, Masterton, Wellington, and Invercargil, which would welcome monied foreign investors and settlers as a boost to their economies.

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  98. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Nickb
    Where did you find that quote from Mr Thompson?

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  99. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Davidp?
    Where did i say raced based collection?

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  100. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    TVNZ website martin.

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  101. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Nickb got a link?

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  102. Jack5 (5,160 comments) says:

    Australia’s exemption keeps popping up in the thread, so perhaps Australia’s policy is of interest. This from an official information site:

    Do you want to buy a home in Australia? If you are not a permanent resident of Australia, and want to buy a home here, you must get prior approval from the Australian Government. You do not need prior approval if you are:
    — an Australian citizen with a foreign spouse and want to buy residential real estate as joint tenants.
    — an Australian citizen resident abroad.
    — a foreign national who holds a permanent resident visa, or a “special category visa”, for example, a New Zealand citizen.
    Why do I need prior approval? The Australian Government believes that foreign investment in the housing sector should increase the supply of homes, and should not be speculative in nature.So the policy is designed to channel foreign investment into increasing the supply of new housing.
    What types of applications are normally approved?Foreigners can normally get approval to buy :
    — vacant land — as long as they start continuous construction within 12 months.
    — Foreigners can normally get approval to buy existing residences for redevelopment — as long as this will increase the supply of housing. As well, the house must remain unoccupied during redevelopment.
    — Foreigners can normally get approval to buy units, townhouses, and house/land packages in a new development.

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  103. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    Are you aware of the concept of browsing the internet and using google?

    http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/realtor-doubts-impact-labour-housing-policy-5521140

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  104. davidp (3,588 comments) says:

    martinh>Where did i say raced based collection?

    Everyone knows that anti-Chinese sentiment is behind the cheap popularism of Labour, the Greens, and NZ First. That is why Labour don’t like “foreigners” buying houses or farms, but don’t mind if those foreigners are Aussies. And why none of them object to foreign musicians or film directors buying houses. And why none of them objected when an Aussie bank owned the Crafar farms, but they did when Chinese people wanted to buy them. And why Russel Norman rushes at Chinese politicians bleating about his flag, but ignore politicians from every other country in the world. And why the Greens warn us about Chinese telecom equipment manufacturers, and not their American counterparts which turn out to have been compromised by the NSA. And why Winston Peters is concerned about the number of Chinese restaurants on Dominion Road.

    You can try and dress this anti-Chinese racism up as something to do with house prices. But it is pretty transparent what is going on. It’s like people who bang on about Zionism when they actually just don’t like Jews.

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  105. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Davip
    No that is what John Key and John Banks the man who cant remember Kim dot Coms helicopter ride is trying to make Asians think.
    The Crafar farms sure made the media bring out some anti chinese people but one swallow doesnt make a spring. And its also not allowed for Kiwis to buy land in China so whether that anti china sentiment is justified is a moot point
    The policy bans all foreigners apart from Australians, you a reading too much into it.
    Do you think that it is actually anti chinese as it is mostly foreign chinese who are buying in NZ?

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  106. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Nickb
    Ha that Peter Thompson, said he never collected figures on that so he is lying or using the Tony Alexander survey as proof

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  107. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Davidp
    Careful what you say about jews, my family dont appreciate being banter like that

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  108. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    Do you think that it is actually anti chinese as it is mostly foreign chinese who are buying in NZ?

    No, it’s mostly Aussies – and they will still be able to buy. Then it’s the Brits – and most of them buy with the intention of immigrating.

    So this Powell Property Policy will have little impact at all other than to show the world that Labour-Greens-NZ First don’t like people who don’t look like them.

    nickb called it right – strip aside the wafer thin justifications and this is nothing more than a Chan-ban. Enoch would be proud of his padawan David.

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  109. Manolo (14,067 comments) says:

    Let’s hope this xenophobic, anti-business and backward-looking policy is the downfall of Captain Mumblefuck.
    What has gone into Labour to continue adopting Luddite policies?

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  110. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    davidp (2,828) Says:

    Everyone knows that anti-Chinese sentiment is behind the cheap popularism of Labour, the Greens, and NZ First.
    …………………..

    Everyone is racist, in so far as primates have a built in preference for people who look like themselves…. that initial reaction is countered when they get to know people. People pick on China because it is emblematic of the other and it’s enormous population.
    The racism angle is used as: “bad person therefore we have a right to act on your behalf” or in favour of mass migration… because the only argument against it is deemed to be racism.
    The people have a right to say :”no”!

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  111. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    bhudson
    Ok you a using the tony alexander survey which he said no one he has found believes.
    Thats fine

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  112. Jack5 (5,160 comments) says:

    David P posted at 11.39 when he was alleging anti-Chinese prejudice by Labour:

    …And why none of them objected when an Aussie bank owned the Crafar farms, but they did when Chinese people wanted to buy them…

    No one “Aussie bank” owned the Crafar farms. When they went into receivership, the big debtors were Westpac, which, originally as the Bank of NSW, has been in NZ for century and a half, Rabobank (Dutch), and PGC Wrightson Finance (then more or less NZ owned). What would have been the point of a protest about a broke concern going into receivership? What is David P’s point about the nationality of the creditors? In fact, there was criticism of the three lenders, not for taking control of the bust enterprise, but for stupidly giving the Crafars so much money in loans. The three lenders would still have come out with losses on the deal after the sale of the farms to the Chinese.
    Among the main objections to the Chinese purchase of the land was that China does not allow foreigners to buy Chinese land. Another was that because the buyer was a company, which was going on to use, among others, NZ state employees, the whole Crafar debacle was another nail in family farming.
    Undoubtedly, some New Zealanders are prejudiced against Chinese, just as some Chinese are prejudiced against Tibetans, Uighurs, Japanese — and white folk. Prejudiced Chinese have a word for white people, “gweilo” or “gwai lo”, which, according to Wikipedia, has a long history of “racially deprecatory use”. “Gwei” means ghost and Chinese associate white skin with ghosts.
    Incidentally, in relation to another current incident, it would be interesting to know if any Hong Kong or Shanghai cab driver has ever been hounded by the police for racist ranting against gweilo in Cantonese or Shanghainese.

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  113. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    Lance (2,055) Says:
    July 29th, 2013 at 11:10 am
    @hj
    So if enough land was made available to satisfy demand, prices would go up stratosphericly anyway?

    ……………………
    I was reading a study from Spain that seems to suggest it is a combination of factors. Land supply is one of them but so is infrastructure, interest rates and demand.

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  114. Mark (1,493 comments) says:

    This policy from labour is nothing more than political fluff that will do little to address the house price inflation facing Auckland in particular. Australia ran or perhaps still runs a similar policy where foreign buyers can only acquire new residences and in the case of multi unit developments only up to 50% of the units. this policy has done little to curb house price inflation in Sydney in particular which has one of the most over priced markets in the world when compared to average incomes. Sydney like Auckland has failed to properly address the supply of housing where over a long period new supply has failed to keep up with population growth.

    Labours policy is ill conceived and will not work, at best it will appeal to the xenophobes that gravitate to NZ First. If Labour is serious about addressing the ability for 1st home buyers to enter the market at a realistic and affordable price they will start with the RMA and the supply of land for new housing development. When the RMA was introduced it was sold on the basis that you would get consent unless the rules said you could not rather than the old Town and Country Planning Act which was prescriptive about what you could do. Local authorities over the years have adapted to and hijacked the RMA by using discretionary consents meaning that compliance becomes expensive and uncertain even for non notified applications.

    National has recognised the issue and talked about addressing it for some time but it is all rhetoric at this point. Labour have their heads buried in the sand in respect of the problems the Act has created and simply has failed to recognise there is a problem.

    We have not yet moved 1 inch towards a workable solution.

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  115. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    Manolo (10,560) Says:
    July 29th, 2013 at 12:00 pm
    Let’s hope this xenophobic, anti-business and backward-looking policy is the downfall of Captain Mumblefuck.
    ….
    the paradigm of virtue has spoken.

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  116. tas (647 comments) says:

    From the stuff article:

    “…just 4700 new homes were built in Auckland last year.”
    “[Shearer] said the policy would reduce demand and help take some of the heat out of the market.”
    “Key said the major way to address the housing market was to increase the level of supply.”

    4700 new homes a year! Clearly the problem is on the supply side.

    Does Labour think that the homes bought by (foreign) investors sit empty? No. They are rented. Barring investors may mean fewer renters and more owners, but it will not mean more houses. Changing whose name is on the title won’t take any heat out of the market.

    Xenophobes…

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  117. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    tas,
    wrong
    From the herald

    :But Ian Thornhill, a Barfoot agent, raised concerns about the situation last year, commenting after an Epsom deal when a Chinese investor bought a house then left it empty.’

    Plus this rental income will flow out of NZ

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  118. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    Westpac economists say expectation of future profits – not a supply shortage – is main reason for soaring Auckland house prices

    “Westpac chief economist Dominick Stephens said in the bank’s monthly analysis of the housing market, “Home Truths” that it has become “fashionable” to talk about a physical shortage of houses and slow building activity driving prices higher in Auckland.

    “But physical housing shortages cannot explain the fact that rents are falling in Auckland,” he said.
    House prices in Auckland are now rising at almost 20% per annum, while rents actually fell 1% in the year to May 2013, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

    “If physical supply was desperately falling short of demand, rents would be rising alongside house prices like they are in Canterbury. Physical supply shortages simply do not fully explain the Auckland housing market.”

    Stephens suggested that a better explanation for the characteristics of Auckland’s housing market – these being low turnover, rapid sales, rising prices and falling rents – was widespread expectation of future capital gain.

    “Owners are reluctant to sell because they expect better prices in the future, hence low turnover. Buyers are desperate to get in and enjoy capital gains, hence rapid sales and rising prices. Investors are keen to acquire properties despite low rental returns, hence falling rents. Tenants would rather own, again pointing in the direction of falling rents and rising prices.”

    BNZ chief economist Tony Alexander in his weekly newsletter last week noted that in Auckland there was a growing tendency for people moving up the scale to their second home to keep their first home as an investment property.

    “Hence further aggravation of the listings shortage,” he said.

    “Reinforcing that, one [real estate] agent noted that of 93 people through an Open Home recently only three had houses which they wanted to sell! The listings shortage is getting worse,” Alexander said.
    http://www.interest.co.nz/property/65294/westpac-economists-say-expectation-future-profits-not-supply-shortage-main-reason-soa

    so just the daring thrust of Labour, Green NZ First position will help pop that.

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  119. TMC (75 comments) says:

    Just a thought…will Dave Dobbyn need to change the lyrics to Welcome Home? That was sort of the Left’s anthem to everyone being welcome in New Zealand? Remember with Zaoui at the end of the video? So maybe the following change:

    From:

    “Welcome home, see i made a space for you now
    Welcome home from the bottom of our heart
    Welcome home from the bottom of our hearts”

    TO:
    “welcome home, see i made a rental space for you
    welcome home but you don’t buy a house…
    welcome home but you can’t buy a house….”

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  120. Jack5 (5,160 comments) says:

    Re hj at 12.20:

    Yes, we need a capital gains tax. Presumably, NZ’s inevitable CGT will not offer tax offsets when valuations fall, but only taxes the gains, so there will be no likelihood of the State coming off second best when the housing price bubble bursts.

    Re TMC at 12.27: Dobbyn wrote that song to welcome an Islamicist activist politician. You want more of them here? The whole of the Brotherhood in Egypt is looking for a new home.

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  121. Pete George (23,685 comments) says:

    ‏@JordNZ

    BREAKING: Stephen Franks points out that David Shearer’s #chanban policy breaches Chinese FTA agreement (signed under Helen Clark).

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  122. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Hi pete
    Franks got that wrong

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  123. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    Pete George (18,556) Says:
    July 29th, 2013 at 12:28 pm
    ‏@JordNZ

    BREAKING: Stephen Franks points out that David Shearer’s #chanban policy breaches Chinese FTA agreement (signed under Helen Clark).
    ……..
    the can’t do attitude (Nact U tobacco)… “but here is land supply” answer won’t got down well .

    How predictable of Dung to take that side…. he knows which side his bread is buttered on

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  124. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    This is relevant:

    Background of housing in NZ
    1.4 million houses
    Most houses inhabited for 70 to 90 years
    Many houses are old, cold and damp
    High level of deferred maintenance
    Relatively low building code standards
    Declining home-ownership rate
    Mäori home-ownership rates remain lower
    No wealth tax, capital gains tax or death duties
    Around 30% of people rent from private landlords
    5% of people rent social housing
    Public consequences
    • Untaxed increase in house prices helping to fuel
    wealth concentration and income flow
    • Increase in relative inequalities has social and health
    consequences at both individual and neighbourhood
    levels
    • Housing is probably our poorest maintained
    infrastructure
    • Poor housing leads to health problems that lead to
    greater health care utilisation
    • Poor housing leads to inefficient use of energy
    http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/media…/tgls-howdenchapman.pdf‎

    Some would have us believe everything ticks over o.k – just leave it to market forces.

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  125. bhudson (4,740 comments) says:

    However another Article (the most favoured nation clause) commits New Zealand to not passing law that discriminates against Chinese investors in comparison with other overseas investors (such as Australians) in terms of permission to invest in the first place.

    http://www.stephenfranks.co.nz/house-buying-ban/

    Dear, oh dear. Shearer and Labour are truly woeful. They can’t even properly grasp our standing commitments.

    Looks like their Chanban will join their manban.

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  126. minto57 (197 comments) says:

    You are all arseholes.
    Prepared to shit over New Zealanders
    and I mean New Zealanders not the fly in spys from a corruppt totlitarian country with too many people
    New Zealanders have every right to be xenophobic in this over poulated world
    keep it up and the riots will follow

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  127. Pete George (23,685 comments) says:

    @HarryBStard

    Russell Norman seen stabbing hemp effigy of David Shearer chanting “keep your bloody mouth shut”

    Not sure it that’s because Shearer keeps sabotaging the chances of a Labour-Green government, or because Labour keeps pinching Green policies and having all their flaws exposed.

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  128. Ross12 (1,455 comments) says:

    This issue is a great for any journalist “worth his/her salt ” –go to the main real estate companies and ask them the relevant questions on who has bought houses in the last 2-3 years. ( These companies don’t want the market disturbed by all the BS from Labour/Greens ,so they might just help out) . Or if there is a register to search, go to it and do the leg work.

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  129. kiwi in america (2,510 comments) says:

    Shearer and Labour spokespeople on this subject have yet again been caught telling porkies. Contrary to Shearer’s claim, very few OECD countries restrict the sale of residential property in the way Labour proposes. If you check through the excellent Global Property Guide http://www.globalpropertyguide.com/ it details the countries that have ownership restrictions and those with none. Of the now 34 members of the OECD (which contains all of NZ’s major trading partners except China), 24 have no restrictions (or restrictions of such a minor and limited nature as to pose few hurdles), another 7 allow foreign ownership (but there are certain processes and procedures to be followed and some land categories exempted) and only 4 that impose outright bans on foreign ownership (Denmark, Switzerland, Czech Republic – EU citizens can obtain some land types and Australia – Kiwis are exempt from the ban and foreigner acquisition of newly built properties usually always receives government approval).

    The restriction on foreign ownership in Switzerland has done nothing to curb their rising property market values and the same could be said for Australia where housing unaffordability in the major cities exceeds that of New Zealand cities. The majority of foreign residential property transactions in NZ are undertaken by Australians and they are exempt so the primary purpose of the ban is not economic but political to enable Labour to demagogue some more on the subject of rising house prices in Auckland.

    Foreigners wishing to circumvent the law will be easily able to do so via trusts. Trusts can be set up in New Zealand with NZ resident trustees (the only names that will ever appear on the title are those of the trustees) and foreign beneficiaries. The Trust Deed is not a publicly viewable document and is only furnished to the IRD for tax purposes or the bank to open a bank account. If a Labour/Greens government sought to require Trust Deed disclosure then the foreign purchaser would simply appoint local nominee beneficiaries who (under a private trustee arrangement) would simply hold the distributions of income and/or capital in trust for the foreigner. Such funds would be able to repatriated offshore to the real foreign owner without difficulty.

    You will find most of the world’s poorer, more corrupt, inefficient and less desirable countries tend to dominate the list of countries that restrict foreign ownership of property whereas almost all the world’s wealthiest economies allow foreign property ownership. What camp does NZ want to be in? This underscores the massive financial ignorance, xenophobia and ideologically driven nuttiness of Labour and the Greens.

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  130. Jack5 (5,160 comments) says:

    Pete George at 12.28 drew attention to the Stephen Franks blog suggestion that the NZ-Australia free trade agreement means we cannot impose different terms on Chinese in buying houses than we impose on our own citizens. Good one, Pete.
    If the FTA means we cannot have reciprocal agreements with Australians (as in entry without passports and as in house ownership), then the FTA has been a sell-out of our sovereignty to the Beijing Communists.
    It means that while New Zealanders resident in NZ cannot buy houses freehold in China we must allow citizens of the People’s Republic of China and resident in China to buy houses in NZ.
    If this is true, add it to the hassling of NZ meat shipments to China, restrictions on NZ’ers protest rights (over Tibet in this case) during official Chinese visits, and it is clear the Reds utterly conned our diplomats and politicians.

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  131. YuiMae (1 comment) says:

    I think it is supposed to be that way. For example, houses in the United States are more expensive than houses in Asia. The value of money in the U.S. is higher as well so they can easily buy houses in Asia. I guess it is fine if this kind of thing happens as well on other countries. Properties are supposed to be sold to citizens rather than foreigners. I bought a house in Edgewater Elizabeth Bay and it was great.

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