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Shared Equity pilot creates strong foundations

The Salvation Army Media Release

Sallies hope Shared Equity pilot creates strong foundations

Auckland, 01 July 2008 - The Salvation Army is welcoming the start of the Government's Shared Equity pilot with the hope it will form the foundation for a permanent and better-resourced scheme in the future.

The $35m two-year Shared Equity pilot aims to assist lower income households into housing in Auckland, Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch and Queenstown.

Salvation Army Social Policy and Parliamentary Unit manager, Major Ian Kilgour, says that the pilot is a positive step towards helping people on lower incomes into their own homes.

'The pilot shows that the Government is getting more serious about addressing New Zealand's housing affordability crisis which has seen home ownership rates declining to their lowest levels in 50 years.

'Big price rises in the housing market in recent years have put the dream of home ownership firmly out of the reach of most modest income families.'

Major Kilgour says that although the pilot is relatively small and limited in terms of the numbers of people who are actually going to be helped, it is still a step in the right direction.

'Our hope is that the pilot will evolve into a permanent and better resourced scheme that provides a more comprehensive solution to the affordable housing crisis.'

A Salvation Army report issued last year urged Government to invest up to $1 billion annually for the next 10 years to build and provide mortgages for affordable houses.

Major Kilgour says that better resourced housing provision would have a significant and long-term impact on improving New Zealand's social stability and contribute significantly to community and family well-being.

ENDS


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