About KiwiBuild in 2019
Kiwi Build is the housing program launched in July 2018 by the New Zealand Government to solve housing crisis. At the beginning of the program the government aimed for building 10000 homes by 2021. The goal turned out to be “overly ambitious”, according to Housing Minister Megan Woods, therefore the deadline has been extended for 10 years.
The first houses are standing, ready to help first home buyers to purchase their first, affordable home. The type of the homes varies among the cities and exact locations. There are five property types included in the program: studio, stand-alone home, attached-home, apartment, duplex and terraced home. These properties are and will be found all over New Zealand. The current properties for sale are in Northland, Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington, Otago, Omokoroa and Waikato. There are currently 35 homes on sale, and more than 9000 home are in the process of building.
Where does Kiwi Build stand compared to the housing market?
We had a little research about the Kiwi Build houses currently being on sale, and we compared the are to the government provided housing solution to the housing market. It turned out that there is a huge supply of currently listed, similarly priced homes in Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington and Northland as well, based on the homes.co.nz database.
These four regions are the most habited regions in New Zealand, thus the housing market is blooming in these cities. Further drawback for Kiwi build is that it is impossible to build new homes in the city, unless some houses get demolished. Living in the outer suburbs can be a problem for the owners who work in the city. From Papakura it would take more than an hour to arrive to Central Auckland in the morning traffic
The main advantage of KiwiBuild
So far it can be said that neither the price, nor the location is the main advantage of Kiwi Build homes in the bigger cities. The biggest advantage is the restricted competition for the properties. Every applicant needs to meet the following requirements:
being at least 18 years old
being a New Zealand Citizen, Permanent Resident or a Resident Visa holder who is ‘ordinarily resident in New Zealand’.
being a first-home buyer or ‘second chancer’
- “Second chancers” might be eligible in case of meeting all other requirements.
having an annual income that is less than $120,000 if the applicants are intending to buy on their own
having a combined income that is less than $180,000 if the applicants are intending to buy with more than one person
- intending to own and live in the home for at least one year for a studio and one-bedroom home, or three years for a two-bedroom and larger home.
In the Kiwi Build program the price of the house is set, and not up to negotiation, which is the casee on the property market very often. In that case the bigger offer gets the home, and that clearly does not favour first home buyers. Kiwi Build homes can be purchased by those only, who meet the criteria and are registered at the Kiwi Build Program. It does not mean, that receiving a house as a registered applicant is granted. There have been almost 20 000 applications submitted within the first week of that program a year ago. So far 251 houses found an owner. In May 2019 there were almost 8000 families were waiting for state housing.
A short summary
All in all, the ambition of solving the housing crises of New Zealand by KiwiBuild has hard time to compete with the housing market in the main cities but it can be viable option for first home buyers in the less inhabited areas of the country.