It takes 18.6 years for the median household to buy the median house in NZ, and that’s excluding rates, taxes and maintenance. That’s via NBR, wo curiously neglect to mention that there is a giant photo of Don Brash on page 2 of the original Household Affordability report, as he is the Chairman of something called the Centre for Resource Management Studies. His commens about the downunder situation are telling:
Australia is perhaps the least densely populated major country in the world, but state governments there have contrived to drive land prices in major urban areas to very high levels
Governments continue to pretend that they are powerless to make housing more affordable or, worse still, implement futile interventions which make the situation worse, as the New Zealand government is proposing for this year
and from the executive summary:
The housing affordability crisis is most pervasive in Australia and New Zealand…
The least affordable markets are generally in California, Hawaii, the US East Coast, Australia, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Canada’s province of British Columbia.
Wellington comes in at 56th equal (or 50th) least affordable market, after Taranga, Auckland, Christchurch and Hamilton. Indeed:
New Zealand is the only surveyed nation in which all of its markets are rated “severely unaffordable.”
Meanwhile, over here in West Australia, there are Mandurah (6th worst in the world) and Rockingham (24th), which are closer to where I’m currently working than Perth itself (19th). That’s got to relate back to local planning laws, as well as the mining-related boom.
The report points to larger scale migration between cities, and notes that
A Sydney resident can save nearly $650,000 by moving to Adelaide, the equivalent of 13 years median income in Adelaide
And the solution? Again – let’s quote the report:
It is necessary to restore housing affordability to sustain the quality of life. Governments committed to a better future need to focus on (1) Allowing housing to be built on low-cost land in the urban fringe and (2) Removing unreasonable infrastructure charges on home buyers. In this process, governments can be aided by monitoring and publishing performance indicators, especially the Median Multiple.