The government's announcement of a ban on foreigners buying existing residential housing has had a mixed response.
When SunLive revealed the news on Tuesday, Facebook users were quick to endorse the idea.
The story received more than 120 ‘likes', with comments including ‘Yay we are finally going in the right direction', ‘Yay!! It's about bloody time!!', and ‘Awesome news for kiwis'.
Tauranga-based New Zealand First list MP Clayton Mitchell says their position on this issue has been ‘pretty clear' from the moment the party was formed.
“As far as the housing crisis goes, this has been the elephant in the room right from the start. These changes will enable New Zealanders to have the first opportunity to buy property around the country.”
He believes it will make a huge difference to the shortage of housing.
“Foreigners will have to actually build a home, which creates opportunities for the building sector, and adds another house.
“It's a bigger problem in Auckland, but you have people from Auckland who have sold to foreign speculators coming down to Tauranga and putting pressure on our housing stock. So it will definitely cool the market down.”
However, Tauranga Property Investors Association president Simon Darmody doesn't believe the proposed changes will have much of an impact on the market.
“From what I see and conversations I have had, the number of foreign speculators purchasing properties anywhere outside of Auckland and Queenstown is a very, very low number.
“It is a very smart move from the government as gives the perception of doing something to stop the housing shortage, but in reality it will have negligible effect on prices or demand.”
He says if it encourages a ‘few new builds in Auckland or Queenstown', then the policy could be welcomed in those areas.
“I think the expectation of most people will be different to the reality, as they do not understand foreign buyers who are New Zealand citizens or residents will still be able to buy properties.”
National Party Finance spokesperson Steven Joyce says the government's announcement ‘raises many more questions than it answers'.
"The first and strangest thing about Labour's announcement is that it isn't an actual ban. Putting houses through a sensitive land purchase criteria is definitely bureaucratic but does not constitute a ban on such sales," says Steven.
"There are also all sorts of definitional questions. Is an apartment on the fourth floor of a building ‘sensitive land'? Is a two hectare property with two houses on it being sold for development able to be sold to an international investor?
"This proposal would also be a massive compliance cost for house buyers of all types. For example, will somebody with a foreign sounding name have to prove their citizenship to the real estate agent?
"The whole announcement was very strange. There has been no paperwork released and the Prime Minister indicated many of the detailed decisions remain to be made.