Earlier this week, during a New Zealand general debate, NZ Green’s Chlöe Swarbrick (Auckland Central) brought up a prominent issue highlighted in the most recent financial stability report published by the reserve bank of New Zealandthe growing housing crisis.

Swarbrick states, ”We know that the [wealth inequality] spread is such that the top 10 percent of this country owns 59 percent of the wealth, and the bottom half—the bottom 50 percent of New Zealanders—own just 2 percent.

”…over the past 10 years we’ve seen wages increase by 20 percent but rents increase—far outpacing that—by 50 percent”

Chlöe Swarbricks

In that same article, Swarbrick says that during the previous responses by the governing party to help stifle this growing issue, such as tax changes, ”mum and dad renters” were being neglected.

”We know that a third of this country rent, and we also know, based on Statistics New Zealand’s data, that those renters are typically paying more of their income towards housing costs.

NZ green party policies highlight their position on rent rates, claiming that all people should be able to live in sustainable affordable housing that costs no more than 30 percent of their income.1

During the debate, Swarbrick said there was a need to have a serious conversion about rent controls. This strategy has been brought up multiple times by the green party including during a question period just a day before the general debate.2

In response to the Green party’s concerns over increasing renting costs during the question period Swarbrick was met with the recurrent response of ”we will continue to monitor the rental market closely” as well as highlighting what has already been done to curb the increasing rent struggles such as limiting rent increases to once a year, banning rental bidding and letting fees, and allowing renters to request rent reduction by the Tenancy Tribunal. Strategies in which Swarbrick showed skepticism.

During that same question period, Dr. Megan Woods stated that, ”We have no plans for rent controls or indexation…”

No additional strategies to limiting rent increases were brought up by the Minister of Housing during this question period.

Joby Moffat

Joby is from small town Manitoba, Canada. Moving to the city of Winnipeg to pursue his interest in preserving the outdoors he grew up in, Joby attained a Bachelors of Environmental Studies with a minor in economics. He holds a strong dedication to the idea that efficient & effective environmental policy and regulation is the key to drive an environmentally sustainable economy and has directed all supplementary education towards putting that principal into practice. As a writer, Joby enjoys covering Green parties relationships with the public and the new and exciting initiatives that are created from these connections.

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