Record house prices shows bright line test failed

Record house price sales in Auckland and other major centres last month show the Government’s half-hearted attempt to cool the housing market has failed, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says.

“Figures released by the Real Estate Institute today shows Auckland medium house prices skyrocketed in the month of March to reach a new high of $820,000.

“The $70,000 increase in one month is almost one-and-a-half times the median income in Auckland.

“Of the Auckland houses that sold last month, a record 35 per cent went for more than $1 million.

“There were also record house prices in Wellington, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Nelson/Marlborough and Canterbury/Westland.

“These figures show that despite the Government’s new bright line test and tax information requirements for offshore speculators coming into effect last October, the housing market has rebounded and is as hot as ever.

“And the so-called “halo effect” caused by Auckland’s runaway prices is now affecting would-be first home buyers in other towns and centres.

“National needs to take meaningful action to take the heat out of the Auckland market and restore the Kiwi dream of homeownership.

“The Government must embark on a massive state-backed building programme to flood the market with affordable homes, ban offshore speculators from pushing prices beyond reach of Kiwi families, and genuinely reform restrictive planning rules,” Phil Twyford says.