Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The disappointment of winning

The Greens announced their healthy homes policy today, promising a warrant of fitness for rental housing and funding to insulate 200,000 homes. And my initial reaction was "meh, Labour and National are offering this too". Which is a sign of how conclusively the Greens have won this policy argument, and convinced everyone. When they first pushed for a government insulation scheme and rental WOFs, National denounced it as a waste of money and a threat to landlords. Now they're implementing both policies and the debate is just over timing and numbers. Which rather robs policy announcements of their impact, but its a great problem to have.

But there is one important difference in the Greens policy: improved security of tenure for renters, and a move to a European model where landlords can't just chuck you out without a reason. Unfortunately the driving force here is increasing housing unaffordability, meaning more people will be renting for longer (or even forever). But it seems like a good solution to the problem. And now doubt, in three or six years, we'll see Labour and National adopting it too.