State Houses On Maori Land – First Time In Decade
Housing Minister Mark Gosche and Te Tai Tokerau MP Dover Samuels today open four new homes at Takou Bay in Northland, the first State houses to be completed on Mâori land since 1992.
“The Far North is an area of real housing need. These new homes are the result of the government working with the local community to help meet that need,” said Mr Gosche.
“In the last decade the previous government dramatically reduced the number of state houses by selling houses and not replacing them. On the rare occasions they did build new state houses those decisions were made on the basis of profits, not people’s needs.
Building on Maori land was viewed as uneconomic and therefore ruled out even though the need has been there for decades.”
Mr Gosche said this government was committed to reversing the trend of the last decade which saw a massive reduction in the number of state houses.
“The previous government sold off 13,500 houses and replaced only 2000. Already in the last two years we have acquired 568 houses. This year we plan to increase the number of state houses by 678.”
The four houses, near Kerikeri, have been built by Housing New Zealand Corporation in partnership with Takou Trust on land owned by the Trust. They are part of a larger housing subdivision where other Trust shareholders can build their own homes, Mr Gosche said.
They are designed as “transition homes” for people attending Low Deposit Rural Lending (LDRL) courses administered by Kia Ora Ngapuhi Housing, until they are able to build their own homes.
The LDRL scheme aims to help people living in targeted rural areas into home ownership with low deposit loans. Funding for the scheme comes from the pool of up to $20 million for home loans in rural areas that was announced in the last Budget.