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National backs speculators, fails first home buyers

National is showing its true colours and backing speculators who are driving first home buyers out of the market, says Labour Leader Andrew Little.

“By defending a $150m a year hand-out to property speculators, Bill English is turning his back on Kiwis who just want a fair shot at owning their own home.

"Unlike National, Labour is on the side of homebuyers. We're going to end this hand-out to speculators and invest the savings in making Kiwi homes warm, dry, and healthy.

"Bill English needs to explain why he’s giving speculators $150m a year while cutting funding for home insulation.

“It’s disappointing that speculator lobby groups are making threats. New Zealanders deserve a proper debate over the speculators’ loophole, not stand-over tactics. We've heard all this empty scaremongering from them before when depreciation was removed. It's self-interested nonsense.

“This tax loophole is turbo-charging the property speculation that has driven house prices sky high.
One in seven properties in Auckland are being bought by big time investors with five or more properties. First home buyers are not getting a look in.

“We have to cool the housing market and stop speculators outbidding first home buyers. The IMF and the Reserve Bank both agree that action needs to be taken.

“It’s speculators who are driving up rents now. Average rents have gone up by $7000 a year in Auckland in the last seven years. Reigning in the speculators will stabilise the housing market and help stop skyrocketing rents.

“Make no mistake; unlike National’s failed attempts to help first home buyers, Labour’s policies will make a difference and restore the Kiwi dream of home ownership. We are levelling the playing field in favour of first home buyers and building homes people can afford to buy.

“National have had nine years to fix this and it just keeps getting worse. They are in denial there is even a housing crisis. It is time for a fresh approach,” says Andrew Little.