Friday, July 7, 2017
Metiria Turei, Green Party Co-leader
“Housing is a really important issue for New Zealanders and it’s an important issue for us too. We know having a home that you can feel safe, secure and settled in is a key part of making people feel like they’re included and part of the community. And when people feel included and part of the community – they’re more likely to participate in their communities. This means better grades, less crime and more local jobs in the area – all good things we want to promote.
Unfortunately, after eight long years of National – New Zealand has become one of the least affordable countries in the world to buy a home. It’s more expensive to buy a home in New Zealand than in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom or Australia – which is a damning indictment of National’s record.
The Green Party has a positive vision for making a positive difference for New Zealanders at all levels of housing. We know that this is a particularly important topic as we know that Indian and Asian New Zealanders are almost twice as likely to be renting rather than owning their own home. We can improve this.
We will make sure that all New Zealanders are in warm, dry and safe rentals that won’t make people sick because of poor insulation. We will improve rights for tenants and make renting more secure so that renters can put down roots and form communities where they live.
Our policies will help people get their foot on the property ladder with our “Homes for Life” package assisting families into home ownership through progressive rent-to-buy ownership and housing bonds.
This means that families struggling to buy a home will be able to enter a rent-to-buy agreement with the government so that they can borrow at a lower rate than what the market would have set.
Our Homes Not Cars policy will ensure homeless people have a home. We will free up millions of dollars for emergency housing by not requiring Housing NZ to pay a dividend to the Crown. It’s outrageous that in a country as prosperous as ours that so many New Zealanders are forced to sleep in cars or under bridges.
The National Government has let the housing crisis go on for too long and let it get too out of hand. The Greens at the heart of government will make sure that no New Zealander is forced to sleep in cars or substandard accommodation and that everyone is supported into decent accommodation. Whether it’s a warm, safe, dry rental or a house of their own. There are changes Government can do, but we need a determination to address our housing issues.”