Here is the report ‘Off the Track’ February 2017
What the report says on housing
The report finds that housing has become harder to find and less affordable in Auckland, but the situation is more stable elsewhere.
The report says Auckland’s population grew by 181,500 in the five years to last September. At the 2006 census average of three people per dwelling, it needed 60,500 more homes to cope.
In fact, only 39,627 new homes were consented – a shortfall of about 20,000.
In contrast, the population everywhere else grew by 174,500, requiring 58,167 more homes.
In fact, 89,907 new homes were consented – more than enough.
The result is that both house prices and rents have risen faster than incomes in Auckland, but have been stable in most other places.
Average Auckland rents jumped from $392 to $490 a week in the five years to December. An average Auckland wage-earner worked 14.2 hours a week to pay the rent five years ago, and now works 16 hours just to pay rent.
For comparison, the average hours required to pay the rent increased only from 10.8 to 11.8 hours a week in Christchurch, and from 11.2 to 11.5 hours a week in Wellington.
Report author Alan Johnson said the Government should be more “hands-on” to fill Auckland’s housing gap.
“Maybe the state has to be more active in land development instead of relying almost entirely on the market.”