Homeownership at lowest point in 66 years

Home ownership lowest in 66 years
One third of kiwis are living in rentals.

Home ownership rates are at their lowest point in 66 years, according to Statistics New Zealand.

Dwelling and household estimates data released on Tuesday shows that as of December 2016, 63.2 percent of people live in their own home.

That's only 1.2 million out of a total 1.8 million homes.

It's the lowest number of Kiwis owning homes since 1951, when ownership was at 61.2 percent.

A record high of 73.8 percent was recorded in 1991 - 10 percent more than today.

Labour leader Andrew Little says the data shows the need for political parties to come together to enact both the Healthy Homes Guarantee and the Kiwibuild Policy.

"The Kiwi dream of owning your own place is slipping away.

"With more and more Kiwis locked out of owning their own home and stuck renting, it's time for Parliament to come together and solve the crisis."

The Healthy Homes Guarantee, which requires all rentals to have heating, insulation and drainage, passed its first reading and is due to be presented before the House early this year.

The data highlights the need for the quality of rental homes to be improved, with a third of New Zealand's population living in them.

Surveys last year found mould was prevalent in nearly half of all rental homes, and contributed to higher rates of sickness for tenants.

The KiwiBuild Policy calls for 100,000 affordable homes to be built and is due for its first reading.