Duncan Garner: Brand new, 4-bedrooms, Auckland - $447k. Why didn’t David Cunliffe come here?

28/08/2014

I’ve been out to Waimahia Inlet housing project in Weymouth; 282 houses which are regarded as affordable Auckland houses.

And the truth is this is affordable, because developers and their need for hefty margins and profits aren’t involved. That’s the difference.

Houses start at $322k for two bedrooms, up to $515k for five bedrooms. It’s set on 16 hectares of former Crown land – houses with a view too. It is what’s called 'social housing'.

What that means is a number of agencies have come together to provide the houses; Government, iwi and other community housing trusts. It’s a not-for-profit organisation, but this is not state housing: it’s social housing.

The Government released the land and invested $29m. The first couple and their family move in on September 19 - the day before the election. Their house is the first house under the Auckland Housing Accord. Although, to be fair, the process for their house began before the Accord was signed.

I have looked at their house; it’s 4 bedrooms and cost them $447k. It’s brand new, with a small patch of land outside. I have been looking for affordable housing in Auckland and this is as close as it gets.

Some houses get a view of the Manukau Inlet. These houses can be built in 8 weeks, but that hasn’t been achieved yet. They arrive largely pre-built. It's the future of affordable housing in Auckland.

There are jobs close-by in industrial areas and the train station is up the road. This housing project is 40 minutes south of the Auckland CB, so the location isn’t blue-chip, but people need to lower their expectations about where they live in Auckland if they want to get on the property ladder.

David Cunliffe had a train-wreck of a housing announcement yesterday. Why didn’t he make a different phone call and come here? We made two calls and the people behind this project welcomed us onto the land and into the houses. They were decent and fair-minded and have a good story to tell. They don’t sell to property investors.

I urge you to look at the video and let me know what you think.

Duncan Garner hosts RadioLIVE Drive, weekdays from 3pm, investigating the issues that matter and news as it happens

source: data archive