Housing crisis puts pressure on new council

An aerial view of Tauranga.

The house crisis in Tauranga only seems to get worse, according to a lobby group that is campaigning for a more equal society.

“The housing crisis has been around so long it runs the risk of becoming the new norm,” cautions Tauranga Closing the Gap chair and national secretary of Income Equality, Peter Malcolm.

He lays responsibility for housing directly on central and local government leadership.

"For many years central government permitted overseas buyers to push up house prices and Tauranga City Council, despite assurances to introduce new town planning rules to allow more intensification, has deferred that decision yet again,” says Peter.

Because of the upcoming local body elections, the TCC won’t make a decision on the plan changes around intensification until early 2020 and has suggested it may be deferred until a complete review in 2023.

Peter says there's some hope a new set of councillors will understand the urgency of relieving the housing crisis.  "Another disappointment with council is around community housing, volunteers who despite receiving nods of approval have seen nothing tangible offered to demonstrate a shared solving of this societal problem."

Peter says on a national level it's yet another wait and see as the current "unsatisfactory" Resource Management Act, is being reviewed.

"It's well overdue but in the meantime, there's a rising number of working poor whose basic housing needs are having to be supplemented by the tax payer, playing yet again into the argument for the living wage to become the new norm."

For further information message: peter@closingthegap.org.nz

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Posted on 20-08-2019 13:09 | By morepork

The Professor has a point. The reality is that housing, just like any other commodity, is a marketplace. The prices are set by supply and demand. If you want cheaper housing, build more of it. Cut the numbers of people entering the country (who all require accommodation), and provide reasonably priced accommodation for those who will never be able to afford their own home. We should be able to shelter all of our people and homelessness (when forced) is a national disgrace.

Get real........

Posted on 19-08-2019 13:45 | By The Professor

There was only something like 2% of property purchases made by foreign buyers, so this wouldn’t have had a significant effect on house prices. Kiwi’s are amongst the other 98% of people wanting to make as much profit out of their property sale as they can. If Kiwi’s want the process of houses to come down, then why don’t they sell them well below market value? And as cruel as it sounds (sorry), but we’re not ALL the same, so this equality rubbish is just that. There will always be people with more money than you and there will always be people with less money than you........that’s life I’m afraid. If people can’t afford to live in a region, then they should consider other areas of the country that are cheaper.

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