Labour will build a mix of 400 state houses and affordable KiwiBuild homes in the Hutt Valley in its first term in government to tackle the housing crisis there, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little.
“Housing in the Hutt Valley is in crisis with many Kiwi families being priced out of both home ownership and the rental market. House prices have soared 25 per cent in the past year, and rents are up 9 per cent.
"266 Hutt families are on the waiting list for a state house. I know of one family that has been living in a garage for six months.
"Under Bill English, Housing New Zealand demolished hundreds of state houses in the Hutt and left the land empty for years. Now, Housing New Zealand is sitting on large tracts of empty land, where families used to live. That’s the heart of the housing crisis in the Hutt.
"Labour will build 400 additional houses and units in the Hutt Valley before the end of 2020. They will be affordable KiwiBuild homes for first homebuyers and Housing New Zealand houses. We are keen to work with the councils on housing solutions for the Hutt.
“We will build a mix of 2-3 bedroom family homes, and one bedroom units for older and disabled people. They will cost from $200,000 for one bedroom units to $350,000 for three bedroom starter terraced homes.
"We will build these houses on empty Housing New Zealand land in areas including Epuni, Naenae, Waiwhetu, and Petone, and look at opportunities to build in new developments around the Hutt.
“Our plans for the Hutt Valley show how Labour will tackle the housing crisis in government.
“Our KiwiBuild programme will build good, modern starter homes and units and sell them to first homebuyers at cost. We will ban overseas speculators from buying existing houses. We will stop Bill English’s policy of bleeding Housing New Zealand dry and, instead, allow it to invest in more houses for Kiwi families in need.
“For nine years, Bill English as Finance Minister and now Prime Minister has failed to show leadership on housing. Labour’s plan is what Hutt families have been crying out for,” says Andrew Little.