‘Home for Life’ pledged

Matamata Chronicle - - Out & About -

The Greens Party is pledg­ing to build 10,000 new homes for peo­ple who can’t af­ford a de­posit, giv­ing them a boost onto the prop­erty lad­der through ‘‘pro­gres­sive own­er­ship’’.

It’s a reaf­fir­ma­tion of the party’s 2014 elec­tion prom­ise, with an ex­pan­sion to pro­vide com­mu­nity hous­ing providers with low-in­ter­est loans to build more homes.

Co-leader Me­tiria Turei launched the pol­icy at the Habi­tat for Hu­man­ity con­fer­ence in Ro­torua.

Build­ing more houses ‘‘that peo­ple can ac­tu­ally af­ford’’ was crit­i­cal to solv­ing the hous­ing cri­sis, she said.

The pol­icy was cen­tred around a ‘‘pro­gres­sive home own­er­ship’’ plat­form, or rent-to­buy. It would see 10,000 homes built over 10 years, and pro­gres­sive home own­ers would pay a weekly pay­ment of no more than 30 per cent of their in­come.

Part of each pay­ment would be rent to cover the Crown’s costs, while the re­main­der would pur­chase eq­uity shares in the home. That meant the time taken to out­right buy a home would vary, de­pend­ing on how much the ten­ant was able to pay.

Turei said the plan would save peo­ple more than $100 per week, com­pared to a mort­gage. It would work along­side any Govern­ment plan to build more af­ford­able homes.

That would likely be a Labour Govern­ment, with the Greens’ sign­ing a mem­o­ran­dum of un­der­stand­ing to cam­paign on a com­mon plat­form with Labour, ear­lier in the year. The two par­ties would col­lab­o­rate on poli­cies and views where an agree­ment could be reached. It’s un­der­stood the pol­icy has the sup­port of Labour.

In ad­di­tion to the 10,000 houses sold di­rectly to con­sumers, Com­mu­nity hous­ing providers would be able to pur­chase 5000 newly-built houses from a Govern­ment that in­cluded the Greens, through a pro­gres­sive rent scheme.

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