The New Zealand Initiative has published an excellent report on Kiwibuild. (Kiwibuild: Twyford’s tar baby)
In essence it says the real problem is the cost of land and also construction. Having the state inserting itself into the market is unlikely to greatly increase the number of new houses, or help struggling first time buyers who don’t necessarily want a new house.
The main upside of Kiwibuild is showing Housing Minister Phil Twyford how frustratingly difficult it is for home builders to actually get houses consented and built. I believe the current unfortunate house price and supply situation is the result of 40 years poor public policy – RMA, other legislation and local authority policies.
I commend Phil’s efforts but, like the Initiative, believe he should now have a re-think, and deal with the root causes. Am doubtful his proposed urban housing development authority is the right answer also. It just side steps the blockages in favour of a powerful agency, which no doubt will be loathed by many where it chooses to operate.