Minister Congratulated - Land Supply Investigation
“Demographia Congratulates New Zealand Housing Minister on Urban Land Supply Investigation Initiative”
Message to Hon Chris Carter, NZ Housing Minister from Hugh Pavletich, Co Author, Demographia Survey
Dear Mr Carter,
Congratulations for providing the leadership in getting an investigation underway, as outlined in this months North & South magazine (refer last paragraph Page 10), on what part the Resource Management and Local Government Acts play in strangling urban land supply and what needs to be done in addressing the problem. I look forward to learning more regarding the details of this investigation.
Please find attached, firstly, an e copy of the North & South article, provided by the magazine following my request. And secondly, a letter from me to the magazine, congratulating you for this initiative and incorporating some suggested solutions for further discussion. The Deputy Editor, Virginia Larson, with the team at North &South, have excelled themselves in providing this exhaustive, well researched and balanced 11 page article dealing with this important issue.
I will refrain from unnecessarily repeating the contents of my attached letter to North & South. You will note in reading it, that I am of the view that in addressing this issue of strangled urban land supply, that the causes and likely solutions are not complex. The serious social issue can be solved with the required political leadership at all levels of Government and the support of communities that care. The process is now underway with your initiative.
My generation had the opportunity of affordable housing - something that is unnecessarily being denied the younger generations. We must ensure this social injustice is dealt with, so that younger people see New Zealand as we did – as a country of opportunity and social justice with respect to housing.
Co author – 2006 Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey
Pavletich Properties Limited
PO Box 13 439
10 August 2006
Letters to the Editor Section
North & South magazine
AUGUST 06 COVER STORY – “ LOCKED OUT – WILL THE KIDS EVER OWN A HOUSE”
Your article “Locked Out” dealing with the housing affordability crisis facing New Zealand, is an enormous contribution to the issue, in providing a diverse range of views. It was particularly pleasing to learn of the initiative by Hon Chris Carter, Minister for Housing, in getting an investigation underway on what part the Resource Management Act and the Local Government Act have in strangling the supply of urban land. The Minister deserves our congratulations and support with this work.
This investigation will be assisted greatly by the work earlier in the year by Arthur Grimes and Andrew Aitken of Motu Research for the Centre for Housing Research and the extensive reputable international research, which clearly shows that artificial strangulation of urban land supply, is the root of the problem. Much of this international research is identified within the Demographia Survey ( www.demographia.com ), released earlier in the year.
The focus therefore needs to be on ensuring that the price differences between rural and raw (prior to subdivision works) peripheral urban land is reduced over a reasonable time. Price is after all the only real measure of scarcity or abundance. One possibility is for Central Government to create an Urban Land Monitoring Authority, to monitor and where required, guide Local Authority performance on land supply.
Local Governments must play thei part by incorporating Social Sustainability Indicators within their Community Plans, following the initiative of the New South Wales Department for Housing in recommending this approach to Local Authorities. On a phased basis over time, Local Authorities should be required to ensure that housing within their area, does not exceed three times earnings, by employing the easily understood and credible Demographia approach.
Decoupling incomes from house prices is not wealth creation, but simply inflation and severe social injustice. The solutions to this problem of our own making need not be difficult or complex. But they will require political will and initiative at all levels of government, within communities that care. The Housing Minister, Hon Chris Carter has provided the necessary leadership, in getting this process underway.
Co Author – 2006 Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey
www.demographia.com (375 words approx)