Tender documents for the KiwiBuild “Buying off the Plans” initiative — whereby the Government will underwrite or purchase new homes the private sector and others are developing — were released recently.
“This initiative will help us develop more affordable homes for New Zealanders, sooner,” according to Housing and Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford.
“There’s an obvious need for us to take urgent action to address the national housing crisis which is what this initiative is designed to do. It will operate alongside our work to fundamentally shift the housing market, and help restore the Kiwi dream of home ownership by expanding the supply of affordable homes,” Mr Twyford says.
“We know that a common challenge faced by developers is the need to sell a significant proportion of dwellings off the plans in order to secure funding for construction, which means that developments can sometimes stall or be put on hold.
“The Buying off the Plans initiative is a unique opportunity for developers to partner with the Government to increase the supply of affordable housing.
“We’re essentially giving developers the certainty and backing they need to deliver suitable developments that would not otherwise proceed.
“It will also enable other developments to be finished at a faster pace than initially planned, in exchange for accelerating a greater number of affordable, KiwiBuild dwellings.
“Our intention is to have a number of these developments under contract in the second half of this year, which I’m confident we will be able to achieve given the positive response to our initial market sounding,” Mr Twyford says.
The Buying off the Plans initiative is specifically seeking proposals that either promise volume or innovation, for developments in Auckland, Wellington, Hamilton, Napier-Hastings, Queenstown-Lakes District, Tauranga, Whangarei District and Nelson-Tasman. Proposals for other areas will also be considered.
For this initial approach to market, priority will be given to developments that are able to commence within the 2018-19 and 2019-20 years. The opportunity will be re-opened later in 2018 for years 2020-21 onwards.
“This focus on innovation, alongside our focus on procuring at scale, recognises the kind of step-change we want to achieve with KiwiBuild.
“We need to think differently, and do things differently, to meet our target of building 100,000 homes over the next decade.”