- The House Price Problem
ACT believes that the cost of housing is unacceptably high. Auckland has a significant housing shortage. The price of an average house in Auckland is nearly ten times the income of an average household. Internationally, three times the median income is considered ‘affordable’. The high price of houses means mortgage payments and rents are higher. Household budgets feel the pressure.
The high cost of housing is widening the gap between people who own houses, and who don’t. People who own houses have increasing wealth as house and land values increase. People who don’t are paying more in rent and their income is not keeping pace. It is getting harder for renters to save for a deposit on their house. High rents are a cause of deprivation for low-income families.
The housing shortage is placing costs on taxpayers as well. The high cost of private housing means the Government spends more on social housing through the Income Related Rent subsidy, and funds more support in Accomodation Supplements.
住房短缺同时也加重了纳税人的负担。高昂的个人住房成本意味着政府要花更多的资金用于社会福利住房，例如与收入挂钩的租赁补贴（Income Related Rent Subsidy）和住房补助金（Accomodation Supplements）。
- The Resource Management Act:
ACT believes that the major cause of the housing shortage in our cities is the RMA. Council plans and policies under the RMA determine whether enough houses will be built.
行动党认为造成城市房屋短缺的主要原因来自现行《资源管理法案》（Resource Management Act，简称RMA）的不足，正是因为市议会遵循RMA法案制定的计划和政策导致了我们没能建造足够的房屋。
The Act gives too much power to councils to restrict development. It requires councils to provide for environmental protection and conduct consultations, but doesn’t require them to consider property rights of owners, economic growth or provide for an adequate supply of housing.
The number of new dwellings consented nationwide each year is still well below its peak of 39,000 in 1974. The Government’s Housing Accords and Special Housing areas have been a band-aid on a broken planning system but they do not address the fact that the RMA in its current form is not fit for purpose to deal with a major housing shortage in our main urban centres.
每年全国新建的房屋数目一直远低于1974年的最高值（39,000）。政府以修订特殊住宅区法案（Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act）来弥补其不完善的规划系统也只是治标不治本，它并不能掩盖现行的RMA法案已无法解决主要城市中心房屋短缺问题的事实。
- ACT’s Housing Affordability Policy
- Take Cities Out of the Resource Management Act.
ACT would rewrite the Resource Management Act, and introduce new supply-focused urban planning legislation (Urban Development Act) for cities of 100,000 people or more. Urban environments, and areas at the edges of our cities should not be regulated and protected in the same ways as undeveloped natural environments.
ACT’s urban development legislation would prioritise supplying land and infrastructure, in response to demand. We would set price thresholds above which land would be automatically released for development. It would include obligations to set out future infrastructure corridors. 行动党的城市发展法案将以充分满足需求的土地的供给与基础设施的建设作为首要任务。我们提倡设定土地的价格区间，超过某一价格区间的土地将自动得到释放用于开发建设。新法案将涵盖制定未来基础设施建设的义务。
We would make zoning less restrictive, with fewer levels and types of zoning. We would strengthen property rights for existing owners by limiting objection rights to people who are directly affected, rather than allowing third parties to have a say.
- Share GST Revenue to Build Infrastructure.
ACT would share a portion of GST revenue collected from the construction of new housing with the local council to incentivise them to approve planning of new homes.
The shared revenue would help cover the cost of infrastructure like roads, water and sewerage which councils must build to support new development. The cost of this infrastructure currently disincentivises approval of new houses and subdivisions.
We also allow councils to use more flexible funding mechanisms for infrastructure. This could include permitting special targeted rates on new developments, to pay for the new infrastructure. Councils need both more flexibility and stronger incentives to plan for more housing.
- Compulsory Insurance for New Buildings.
ACT would reduce the cost of compliance for builders, and reduce the financial risk on councils, by removing council building certification, in favour of a compulsory bond or insurance over new buildings. Requiring insurance for the replacement of the building would ensure standards are upheld while reducing the time spent on council inspections and red tape.
Replacing council building certification with compulsory insurance for 25 years would incentivise insurers to find the most reliable builders and best building supplies to insure. The builders’ incentive would be to get the best premiums and service, by proving they are building high-quality homes. Insurers could sign-off on building materials that are certified overseas, where councils are reluctant to today.
This is an agenda to fundamentally reform the housing market. Our great country deserves nothing less from its politicians.