KiwiBuild reset 'a damp squib', says Judith Collins

National's Judith Collins has described today's KiwiBuild reset as "a damp squib", calling it a retreat from the Government's "flashy" promises. 

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Among the changes: officials are abandoning the plan to build 100,000 homes over 10 years. Source: 1 NEWS

The Government announced a raft of changes to KiwiBuild today, scrapping the 100,000-home target, deposit requirements for first homebuyers dropped down to five per cent and progressive home ownership schemes were introduced. 

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Megan Woods’ announcement comes after the scheme’s been marred with numerous issues. Source: 1 NEWS

"New Zealanders who dream of home ownership will feel justifiably let down by the KiwiBuild reset," Ms Collins said.

"The three key elements are gone – there's no 100,000 homes target, price caps have been loosened and the asset test for 'second chancers' is no more."

"All we got from the new Housing Minister was a commitment to try harder. It's meant to be KiwiBuild, not KiwiHope."

The removal of the 100,000 target came after the Government fell significantly short of its June 2019 target of 1000 homes - with only 258 homes completed as of yesterday. The interim targets were discarded earlier this year.

"This is a massive retreat from the flashy promises," Ms Collins said. 

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The $400 million investment in new home ownership schemes is being welcomed, but some say it lacks detail. Source: 1 NEWS

Housing Minister Megan Woods said today that when targets were "driving a policy", it was appropriate to call time on that. 

"We've been determined to get this back on track."

Ms Collins said more details were needed around the progressive ownership schemes, which would see shared equity or ownership and rent-to-buy. 

"There may be some merit in this approach, but the devil is always in the detail."

The Government set aside $400 million from KiwiBuild to go toward the scheme "to help more people buy their own home", Ms Woods said. 

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Judith Collins told Breakfast Labour need to pull the plug and start over. Source: Breakfast

Ms Collins said "real change" would come from cutting red tape through Resource Management Act reform, to pull prices down.

The Government launched the overhaul of the Resource Management Act in July, saying its environmental outcomes were "disappointing" and it had contributed to the housing crisis.

Despite the issues around KiwiBuild, the June 1 NEWS Colmar Brunton Poll showed Kiwis were still backing the concept.

The poll asked, "Do you think the Government should continue with the KiwiBuild scheme?"

Sixty per cent said yes, the Government should keep going, while 34 per cent said no and five per cent didn't have an opinion.

The Government is also looking to see if market study powers could be used to investigate the cost of building homes.