The Reserve Bank’s most scathing critique to date of National’s inability to handle the housing crisis shows the Bank is sick of having to pick up the pieces, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.
“John Key continues to deny there is a housing crisis – to the shock of anyone trying to buy their first home. That’s why he refuses to do anything.
“Now the Reserve Bank deputy governor Grant Spencer has weighed in, saying ‘housing market imbalances have become more accentuated, especially in Auckland’. That’s Reserve Bank language for, ‘We have a Housing Crisis’.
“He has been scathing of National’s response, saying ‘the shortage of housing is getting worse’. He says the Special Housing Areas have led to few completed homes and the shortage increased over the past year to between 15,000 and 20,000 houses. That gap will take years to plug.
“The Reserve Bank is still gamely trying to stem the flow of problems in the housing market by looking at options to make it riskier for banks to lend to investors lend to than the average family looking to buy a home.
“But as we saw with loan to value mortgage restrictions, Reserve Bank tools can be too blunt and hurt first home buyers and the regions. The Bank is rightly wary of weighing in.
“It’s the Government’s job to fix the housing crisis. That’s what the Reserve Bank is saying today. John Key hasn’t listened to anyone else. Hopefully he will listen to Mr Spencer,” Andrew Little says.