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Housing Minister Sides with ACT on Housing Affordability

ACT Leader John Banks
March 7 2013

Housing Minister Sides with ACT on Housing Affordability

ACT Leader John Banks today congratulated the Minister of Housing for agreeing with ACT that land prices for residential housing were absurdly high in Auckland because land supply was too tightly constrained.

Freeing up the supply of land is the only rational answer to this problem and ACT fully supports Nick Smith’s focus on easing the Metropolitan Urban Limit,” Mr Banks said.

“The Productivity Commission report into housing affordability found that in Auckland, land accounts for approximately 60 per cent of the cost of a new home. Outside of Auckland, land only accounts for 40 per cent of a new home.

“In other words, Aucklanders are paying a 20 per cent premium on land as a result of Auckland Council’s urban planning policies.

“This isn’t fair – and the Council’s plan to constrain 60 – 70 per cent of all new development within the current MUL will only make it worse.

“ACT believes New Zealanders should be able to choose for themselves where they want to live – whether that be in intensified, compact apartments close to the city, or on the city fringes in a home with their own bit of lawn. The role of the Council plan is to enable lifestyle choices of Aucklanders rather than dictate them.

“ACT’s Freedom To Build policy provides a blueprint for RMA reform which would restore private property rights and free up restrictions on land supply.

“We are pleased Housing Minister Nick Smith supports the principles of ACT’s policy and we hope he encourages Environment Minister Amy Adams of the need to go further with the proposed RMA reforms,” Mr Banks said.

ENDS

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