TODAY |

Hurdles deterring potential buyers from snapping up KiwiBuild homes, developer says

Ten KiwiBuild homes at a complex in Auckland's Otahuhu have been slow to sell - with just one of the apartments having been bought to date.

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Restrictions around selling and the complicated procedures are getting in the way, says Shane Brealey of NZ Living. Source: 1 NEWS

They've been on the market since late last year and the complex's developer Shane Brealey of NZ Living says at the moment there are too many hurdles in the way of KiwiBuild buyers.

He says the restrictions around selling the property within three years and the complicated registration procedures are getting in the way.

"In a softer market, like we've seen since about September last year, any little impediment, any little chip in the road is enough to deter people."

New figures released to 1 NEWS today show 74 KiwiBuild homes have now been built around the country.

Of those homes, 39 have not yet been sold - although some have only just been completed.

Mr Brealey says KiwiBuild needs to start treating first home buyers better.

"The whole empathy with the buyer, put your arm around the buyer and help them through the process and be a pleasant vendor to deal with," he says.

Housing Minister Phil Twyford is not alarmed with the rate of sales in Otahuhu.

"(I'm) completely relaxed about that. The median or typical time it takes for a Kiwi house to sell is 48 days, these houses were only completed right at the end of last year."

But the Minister concedes Kiwibuild needs streamlining and says that's why the Government is looking at a reset.

"We are looking at the issue of how we can make the process less clunky and better for first home buyers."

But ACT leader David Seymour views the slow Otahuhu sales rather differently.

"Only the Government could declare a housing crisis and then go on to build houses and fail to sell them," he told 1 NEWS today.

While the National's housing spokesperson Judith Collins said the slow sale rate was a reflection of an underlying flaw with the flagship KiwiBuild programme.

"Phil Twyford's not producing houses or dwellings where people want them and in the configuration they want."

"I think the whole scheme doesn't work," she said. .

But Mr Brealey says KiwiBuild is just what New Zealand needs.

"I think to give first home buyers an unfair advantage is a good thing - it gives them the first opportunity to come in.

Previously they were always sitting second and third tier behind, and the investors would be in there first and they'd snap up all the good stuff," he told 1 NEWS.