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Greens urge quick action on housing

21 October, 2004

Greens urge quick action on housing

Green MP, Sue Bradford is urging the Government to move swiftly to help struggling families own their own home, following reports in the media that it is considering plans to help poorer New Zealanders raise a deposit.

"The dream of owning your own home has become a nightmare for many New Zealanders," said Ms Bradford, the Green Housing spokesperson. "A huge gap has opened between property owners and those who can never realistically afford a deposit.

"Waiting lists for state housing are bursting at the seams while rising interest rates and sky-rocketing prices have made it increasingly difficult for middle and lower income families to buy their own homes.

"We will be encouraging the Government to introduce a Universal Child Benefit that can be capitalised into a deposit for a home, rather than the present, targeted, form of assistance which the Government admits would be much more difficult to capitalise into a deposit.

"Another way the Government could assist people into their first home is by expanding the 'social housing' stock so that more people are paying income-related rents, which will place downward pressure on the private rental market. Lower rents mean more money can be saved for a deposit," said Ms Bradford.

"The Green Party is also very concerned that more and more millions of taxpayer dollars are being paid to private landlords via the Accommodation Supplement, rather than being used to build more state houses or providing deposit finance for a first home."

ENDS


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