New Zealand Labour Party

Better homes for Maori

Labour’s vision is that all New Zealanders have a fair shot at owning a place of their own, and all of our families have a warm, dry, safe home to live in. Working with iwi and other Māori organisations will be crucial to making that vision a reality.

Labour will work with iwi and Māori organisations so all New Zealanders are treated equally and have a fair shot at owning their own warm, dry, safe home to raise happy, healthy families.

The Māori home ownership rate, in the last 30 years, has fallen from nearly half to barely a quarter. There are 14,000 homeless Māori. Inflexible rules make it tough for Māori land owners to access private mortgages and government housing policies if there’s more than one owner.

Labour will work with iwi Māori organisations on affordable housing development projects to help ease the housing crisis. Labour will introduce policies that will help more Māori into homes.

Labour will:

  • Partner with hapu, iwi and Māori organisations to develop affordable and social housing through the procurement process and by creating joint development organisations

  • Expand home ownership support programmes proven to assist Māori into home ownership including:

    - Invest an additional $20 million over four years in NGOs and Māori providers who deliver supported home ownership services such as budgeting advice
    - Reform the Kāinga Whenua and Welcome Home Loans schemes so Māori are able to access home loans on an equal basis to other New Zealanders whether the land has one owner or is part of a whānau trust with multiple owners
    - Work with financial institutions, iwi and Māori organisations to enable iwi and Māori organisations to access mortgages collectively on behalf of their members
    - Investigate the option of shared equity and rent to buy for KiwiBuild houses with iwi

  • Establish a Māori Housing Unit within the Affordable Housing Authority to ensure housing policies are tailored to meet the specific needs and aspirations of Māori

  • Increase state housing stock by at least 1,000 homes per year

  • Implement a Healthy Homes Guarantee to ensure all rental homes are warm and dry

  • Work to end homelessness by increasing emergency housing, developing a national strategy and action plan, adopting a Housing First approach and implementing a licensing regime and minimum standards for boarding houses.

These policies will see more affordable houses built and create more possibilities for iwi Māori to buy homes.

By building affordable homes and state houses, and taking account of the special status of Māori land, Labour will reduce homelessness and help more Māori buy their own homes providing long term stability.

Labour’s housing policies will house over 20,000 more Māori families. Based on their income we have modelled that over 17,000 Māori renters will purchase KiwiBuild homes; we expect to shift more into home ownership through our supported home ownership programmes; iwi, hapu and Māori organisations will be enabled to develop more housing for their members by partnering with Government through the Affordable Housing Authority; and our state housing policies will help more than 2,500 Māori on the social housing waiting list.