Friday, February 14, 2020

Time to crack down on house-hoarding

The Helen Clark Foundation has released its report on the housing crisis, and found that house-hoarders are to blame for it:

Property investors are to blame for New Zealand's high house prices, a new research paper published by the Helen Clark Foundation says.


McArthur said previous attempts to address housing problems had not worked because they saw it simply as an issue of supply and demand.

But she said the windfalls for those in the property market had come at the expense of families and people's basic need for shelter.

Speculation in the market was the primary driver of house price growth, she said, and houses were being treated as an investment, fuelled by the availability of cheap credit.

To address that, she recommended debt-to-income limits on borrowing for high-income households and a capital gains tax.

Its the obvious solution. But it requires the consent of MPs, who are among the biggest house-hoarders in the country. Their self-interest and greed is a big part of why we have this problem. And we should judge them harshly for it.