Why are the regions still facing restrictions?

Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford is questioning why the regions should continue to be saddled with LVR lending restrictions announced by the Reserve Bank today.

“Labour has been calling for the regions to be exempted from LVRs for the best part of a year. In the absence of any meaningful action from the Government, at least the Reserve Bank has now taken some action against property speculators.

“Having taken the step to loosen the LVRs outside of Auckland, you have to ask why the Reserve Bank doesn’t go the whole hog and exempt the regions.

“Why should first home buyers in Dunedin, Palmerston North or Gisborne face minimum deposits when there is no housing crisis there.

“In large areas of New Zealand house prices are static or even declining. In fact, house prices in 47 of the 104 areas monitored by QV since National took office have either declined or increased by less than 10 per cent.

“Regional New Zealand continues to pay the price of National's failure to fix the Auckland housing crisis. Homeowners and businesses around the country are paying higher interest rates because the Reserve Bank is fearful of lowering rates in case it stokes the Auckland housing market.

“National has run up the white flag and surrendered to the housing crisis, after six years of failed policy. The Reserve Bank's U-turn on regional LVRs shows just how worried the central bank is about the risk to financial stability posed by the Auckland housing crisis,” Phil Twyford says.