Thursday, October 03, 2019

$47 billion

How much will NeoLiberal irregulation of the building sector and subsequent leaky homes crisis cost us? $47 billion, according to a new book:

The total cost to fix all of New Zealand's leaky homes would be $47 billion, probably.

The estimate comes from a new book,
Rottenomics written by journalist Peter Dyer, and dwarfs earlier estimates for fixing the legacy of the era in which the country forgot how to build weathertight homes.

Dyer couldn't be sure his estimate, which included the cost of both past and future leaky home fixes, wasn't out by a few billion.

"It's a conservative estimate," said Dyer. "But it's 20 per cent of GDP. It's just staggering."

Keep this in mind next time National or any other party talks about "deregulation" and "cutting red tape". Those regulations are there for a reason - for example, to stop people building houses that leak and are unfit for purpose. And while the deregulators focus only on "compliance costs" - the cost of doing things right - the cost of letting them do things wrong can be absolutely staggering. Like so much else in the NeoLiberal agenda, "deregulation" is about short-term profit for a few, while dumping long-term costs on the rest of society. And that is something we should neither accept, not tolerate.