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Kiwi home buyers lose out to foreign investors

10 October 2005

Kiwi home buyers lose out to foreign investors

New Zealand house prices are being pushed beyond the reach of many ordinary Kiwis thanks to an out of control buy up by foreign investors - but lack of monitoring means the true picture is hidden, Green Party Co-Leader Rod Donald says.

Quotable Value's latest house values survey shows a national increase of 14.9 percent, the biggest rises were recorded in provincial centres.

"There is no doubt that foreign investors are artificially inflating property prices. Modest New Zealand homes are still selling at bargain prices as far as overseas buyers are concerned, especially because the exchange rate favours them.

"However, the extent of the problem is not known as sales to foreign investors are not monitored. Anecdotal reports from real estate agents suggest this is a growing trend and certainly phrases like 'overseas tenders close on' seen in weekend property advertising tend to confirm this.

"I urge the Government to follow a recommendation from the Finance and Expenditure Select Committee in August to monitor property purchases by foreign investors so their impact on New Zealand's housing market can be properly evaluated. At the moment there is absolutely no information about this," Mr Donald says.

Green Party policy would stop land sales to foreign corporations and individuals who are not New Zealand residents.

"It is not fair that many New Zealanders cannot afford to buy a family home because they are competing in the same market as well-off overseas buyers who want to profit from loose foreign investment laws," Mr Donald says.


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