State housing sell-off worth $5B

  • Breaking
  • 06/10/2014

A big state-house sell-off is on the way, and up to $5 billion-worth of homes could be put on the block.

The shake-up of the Government's housing stock will be a key focus for the next three years, with Finance Minister Bill English to lead it.

On the block is everything from a tiny 75 square metre two-bedroom state house in Auckland's Remuera, on the market for $740,000, to a three-bedroom home in Taumarunui for just $38,000. Thousands more properties will soon hit the market. 

"There will be state house sales because we need to move a lot faster if we're going to provide enough houses for low-income families," says Mr English.

Currently the Government owns around 68,000 homes, worth around $17 billion. Around 22,000 have been identified as being in the wrong place or size which equates to around $5 billion. Many of those could soon be sold off.

"We haven't set a target about what will be sold down," says Mr English.

Mr English says the Government will pump the money into social housing, run by the likes of the Salvation Army.

"The Government will be owning less houses and social housing providers will be owning more."

So a big cull of state houses is about to get underway, but the crucial question is: Will all that money make its way back into social housing or will some be pocketed by the Government? The official response is that hasn't been worked out yet.

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source: newshub archive