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Supply standoff in Hamilton

Hamilton is facing a supply shortage and accusations over who is to blame for the lack of new properties making it to market are flying.

Wednesday, August 31st 2016, 3:31PM

by Miriam Bell

Close proximity to Auckland means Hamilton has been benefitting from Auckland’s boom while, at the same time, it is the hub of the Waikato and New Zealand’s fourth-largest regional economy.

As a result, Hamilton’s population is growing – and fast, albeit not at Auckland’s rate.

Earlier this month, Hamilton City Council staff released data which indicates the city's population is set to swell from 158,360 residents to 180,280 by 2026.

To meet the demand this will create, council staff have estimated that Hamilton will need to build 1000 new houses every year for the next decade.

Much as in other cities, there appears to be constraints which are preventing the amount of supply needed from hitting the market.

Now, outgoing Hamilton mayor Julie Hardaker has taken to Facebook to point the finger of blame at developers, saying the Council has done it’s bit and is ahead of the demand estimates.

Suggestions the Council has historically under-invested in infrastructure and constrained supply is rubbish, she said.

“On the supply side, today, right now, there is enough land zoned with Council infrastructure in place to build 3433 new dwellings in new subdivisions.

“And in the budget Council has approved infrastructure investment to provide another 4,800 through to 2025. Add to this potentially 3800 in the infill areas for the same period.”

Hardaker questioned why there aren’t more sections on the market in new subdivisions, when the numbers show there is plenty of land available.

Council staff know what subdivision consents have been issued and how much of that consented land has been released to market, she said.

“At the moment it looks like developers hold and drip feed the market.”

The Council has limited options to influence when developers release titles, she said.

“But it has continually lobbied the government to reduce the time resource consents can be held from eight years down to three years. I think that would make a big difference.”

However, Hardaker’s comments have not been well received by developers in the region, with the Waikato branch of the Property Council coming out swinging.

Property Council Waikato branch president Thomas Gibbons said he was baffled by Hardaker’s suggestion that developers are to blame for a lack of supply in Hamilton.

“It is easy to make broad accusations based on a couple of anecdotes about some developer drip- feeding sections to market.

“But the reality is that most developers want titles yesterday. Most lots are sold off the plans well in advance of titles.”

The Council claims it has made land available for housing by zoning it, but zoning land does not mean it is ready for housing, he said.

“The missing link is infrastructure. There are plenty of stories out there about battles to get the Council to understand the infrastructure needs of growth cells, and what is needed to meet demand."

Gibbons said it is not just a matter of saying that land is ‘developer ready’, a development must be cost-effective in order to be delivered.

Developers are always willing to cooperate, but want transparency and genuine two-way communication, he said.

“We need to ensure there is transparency in the Council’s assumptions and growth projections. We need a real rethink of Council policies that unnecessarily constrain development.”

“The Property Council sees effective and sustainable development as a partnership between developers, the Council, and the community.”

 

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AIA 5.35 4.49 5.25 5.55
ANZ 5.54 5.15 5.85 6.15
ANZ Blueprint to Build 2.78 - - -
ANZ Special - 4.55 5.25 5.55
ASB Bank 5.35 4.49 5.25 5.55
Avanti Finance 5.45 - - -
Basecorp Finance 6.45 - - -
Bluestone 5.29 7.49 7.59 -
BNZ - Classic - 4.55 5.25 5.45
BNZ - Mortgage One 5.55 - - -
BNZ - Rapid Repay 5.55 - - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
BNZ - Std, FlyBuys 5.55 5.35 5.94 5.99
BNZ - TotalMoney 5.55 - - -
CFML Loans ▲6.45 - - -
China Construction Bank 5.50 5.40 6.14 6.40
China Construction Bank Special - 4.45 5.19 5.45
Credit Union Auckland 5.95 - - -
First Credit Union Special 5.85 4.70 5.20 -
Heartland Bank - Online 4.00 3.85 4.70 4.84
Heretaunga Building Society 5.95 4.80 5.50 -
HSBC Premier 5.49 4.39 5.15 5.39
HSBC Premier LVR > 80% - - - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
HSBC Special - - - -
ICBC 5.25 ▲4.29 ▲5.09 ▲5.35
Kainga Ora ▲5.43 ▲4.57 ▲5.58 ▲5.85
Kainga Ora - First Home Buyer Special - 2.25 - -
Kiwibank 5.00 5.55 6.19 6.39
Kiwibank - Offset 5.00 - - -
Kiwibank Special 5.00 4.55 5.19 5.39
Liberty 4.84 - - -
Nelson Building Society 5.95 4.95 5.85 -
Pepper Essential 3.44 - - -
Resimac 4.59 5.60 6.16 6.29
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
SBS Bank 5.29 4.69 5.35 5.49
SBS Bank Special - 4.19 4.85 4.99
Select Home Loans 4.09 4.29 4.86 5.09
The Co-operative Bank - First Home Special - ▲4.19 - -
The Co-operative Bank - Owner Occ 5.45 ▲4.29 5.19 5.45
The Co-operative Bank - Standard 5.45 ▲4.79 5.69 5.95
TSB Bank 5.59 ▼5.14 6.05 6.15
TSB Special 4.79 ▼4.34 5.25 5.35
Unity 5.65 ▲4.80 ▲5.50 -
Wairarapa Building Society 5.24 4.55 5.20 -
Westpac 5.54 5.09 5.79 6.09
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Westpac - Offset 5.54 - - -
Westpac Special - 4.49 5.19 5.49
Median 5.45 4.55 5.25 5.52

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