Can anyone join House Club?


Yes anyone can join but you have to be over 18 and enrolled or qualified to vote in the 2020 NZ general election to be in the Founding 500.  We need 500 paid up members to become a registered political party to contest the party vote in general elections.

How will House Club make cheaper houses?


Most of the excessive cost of New Zealand houses is in the land cost.  Added to that is building materials are controlled by a limited number of suppliers - and then there are restrictions on who can build what. All of these reasons are due to excessive regulation.

The crazy land costs are caused by the RMA and restrictive zoning usually to satisfy council planners and politicians preference for a "compact urban form". In markets like Auckland this can add over $500K to the cost of a house. What House Club does is zone its own land - so the huge windfall profits made for landowners or developers when a council rezones land from rural to housing - are instead savings to House Club members. Only House Club can rezone land instantly - councils will still need to go through the RMA and district plan process. This puts the House Club members with all the power - and the landowners and landbankers are now on the back foot. To see the prices of sections in a country which doesn't restrict land supply, check out how low prices are in the US for new housing here

House Club will also not require houses built in a Club Zone to comply to the Building Act, NZ Building Code or any New Zealand standards. All of these force you to buy locally made or approved products which are usually controlled by monopolies or cartels. Instead Club Zone houses can use anything they like. So low priced products like amazing windows from Eastern Europe or plasterboard from China is fine in our houses. Or complete kitsets from Australia or Scandinavia are all acceptable in the Club Zone

Further to this Club Zone houses can be built by anyone. We have no "Restricted Building Work" and no requirement for designers or builders to be LBP's (Licensed Building Pratictioners). This will mean the Club Zone will be the only place where non-LBP holders (the majority of builders in New Zealand) can do the full range of building work. This will bring some of the very experienced older builders out of retirement - there are thousands who have simply given up trying to deal with endless Government and council interference.

The Club Zone will also have much simpler health and safety rules. So Worksafe NZ will not have full jusidiction in the zones. There will be more workers building roads and less traffic control people getting in the way. 

None if this is particuarly radical - it is simply a winding back to times when building houses was simple and they cost much less. The need for all these regulations is a recent thing and House Club members are happy to go back to the old ways and have a much cheaper house built by much happier people!


Aren't high house prices due to immigation and low interest rates?


This is a common misconception but does not make any sense. If demand increases you would just increase supply so there are more houses available. New Zealand has tons of really buildable land, a lot of around the main centres and serviced by good networks of rural roads. It has been estimated that extending the city limits in Auckland by just 2km would accommodate another million people. Mobile phones don't increase in price because there is increased demand - they just make more of them.

Low interest rates should be helping people buy houses not hindering them. House Club is here to expose the myths you have been told about house prices by simply building them! And you can be a part of it.

What is a Club Zone?


A Club Zone is land where building does not have to comply to the RMA, the Building Act or local council zoning. This is nothing new - until the 1980's the Government and its departments like the Post Office, Railways and Ministry of Works did not need to get building or resource consents for anything they built on Government owned land. In some US states such as Texas there are no town planning rules. This was the same in NZ until 1953 and the Town and Country Planning Act - yet houses build before this act are equally sought after and valued than later ones - often more so! 

House Club decides solely on where a Club Zone is created. The land can be bought outright by House Club or it can award a group or private landowner a Club Zone - or a combination of both. Each Club Zone site can determine it's own rules or convenants to suit its purpose, but these will need to be approved by House Club if it is not a partner or owner.

House Club operates always for the benefit of it members to deliver houses to them at the lowest possible cost. There is no government interference in House Club in the same way as the Government does not interfere in Fonterra - despite Fonterra having special rights awarded to it by legislation.  

Would House Club homes be in the city or the country?


Typically they will be at the edge of town where the land is zoned rural so is much cheaper.  Although planners and environmentalists prefer to jam people inside artificial city boundaries, very few people seem to actually like it.  In this recent survey 91% of Kiwis seem to need or want a backyard. https://www.westpac.co.nz/rednews/property/kiwis-prioritise-home-with-backyard-over-luxury-features/

Here you can see the people starting to rebel against the putting too many houses in the existing suburban areas https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/property/119507153/rule-changes-mooted-to-stop-hamilton-slum-builders

Developing in the fringes is not only cheaper but faster too. If the density is kept low then the rural road network and infrastructure that exists around most cities will be sufficient for the intial Club Zones. Modern self contained wastewater plants can service the zones if trunk connections are not nearby. Freshwater and stormwater can be collected and disposed of on site if need be and most rural roads have a power network.  

It is unlikely House Club could offer inner city houses much cheaper than the market currenltly offers as the land is already zoned residential so very expensive, and building high rise and in a city location is also very pricey. However if you are looking to buy in the city voting House Club in to power will likely reduce the price of houses there as the overall supply will be greatly increased. The same applies to rents.


Will House Club houses be safe?


Yes they will be safe. Most existing houses in NZ would not comply to the latest code anyway yet can still be very expensive. Individual Club Zones can apply their own rules and the buyers can choose areas to buy where they feel confident. Houses particulary single level lightweight timber ones have a very good safety record in earthquakes and fire. Not one person lost their life in a single level timber house in the Canterbury earthquakes. 

Do Club Zone houses need to comply to standards like NZS3604?


No they don't as long as they are only one or two storeys.  There would be well over a million houses in NZ which come nowhere near to complying to standards like NZS3604 and you can legally buy these - often at very high prices.  Builders will probably choose to use some standards as a selling feature but making them not compulsory means you can import a house kit or building materials from overseas without restriction. This undermines the local materials supply cartels which contribute to the very high building prices here. 

Members buying in the Club Zones will accept they are paying much less for having a house which may contain building products which are not made in New Zealand or made to a 'special' NZ standard. Most imported mass production materials are made to adequate or better standards than we have here anyway. At present aluminium windows made for Australia do not comply to the NZ standard NZS4211:2008 - yet they have hurricanes in Australia. The current review of the Building Act will tighten importing rules - supported of course by the NZ Building Industry Federation who represent the local suppliers and manufacturers.


All House Club does is provide a choice to buy a house which complies to all the plannng and building regulations in New Zealand - or not.  People decide what is of value to them. At present everyone is forced to buy the house the system has decided you should have - House Club members simply opt out and say they would rather save hundreds of thousands of dollars instead.

Is it true houses must meet 2500 rules and regulations and boats have none at all?


It is hard to add up all the rules and regulations the Government and councils have made for building a house but it is true pleasure craft in New Zealand need to comply to no construction rules at all, irrespective of size. You can build a 100 metre boat and unless you are using it for commercial use or charters there are no regulations at all - you can build it out of blotting paper if you like. This applies to around one million boats in New Zealand and could of course equally apply to basic housing.

Will banks lend on homes in the Club Zones?


Of course! The Club Zone houses will be far cheaper than the equivalent house outside the zone. For example with the Auckland median house price now nearly $900K and a good 3 bedroom Club Zone house costing around $300K then the banks will have far better security over the lower priced house. And of course banks lend against used houses which often don't comply to any standards at all. 

The problem may well be that the overpriced townhouses and apartments will find financing difficult. 

I am concerned other houses in a Club Zone development might not be built to the same standard as mine.


All Club Zone's will have their own covenants which houses need to comply to in the same way as most subdivisions do. There will be a wide range of these and you will be able to choose a development which suits the standard and style of housing you want to live amongst. 

Can tiny houses be built in a Club Zone


Yes they can as long as the convenants of the particular development allow it. What is anticipated is the Club Zones will be used for dedicated tiny house villages, and will be developed all over the country. Like all houses in the Club Zones there will be no requirement for tiny houses to have wheels or comply to the Building Act, RMA or local council planning rules.

I own a lifestyle block in a modern subdivision with restrictive covanants which limit houses to one per lot. Will my neighbour be able to build a number of houses by getting a Club Zone?


No the Club Zones don't overide the covenants as they are legal agreements between the owners in the subdivision. If all owners agreed they wanted to build more houses then a Club Zone could be created though.

What is the plastic supermarket bag policy in the Club Zones?


Yes of course they will be allowed!  In fact supermarkets will be allowed as well as there is a need for a third operator in New Zealand to break the duopoly and creating Club Zones for them throughout the country is probably something that the main parties would support anyway. 

Can Club Zones incorporate employment areas?


Yes the Club Zone is ideal for either straight employment zones or a mixed use zone. For example when Sleepyhead beds wanted to expand their Auckland factory they found no land available with the right zoning. So they are moving to Ohinewai in the middle of nowhere where they are planning 1100 houses to sell to staff. But with a Club Zone they could stay in Auckland and the families would not suffer the upheaval of moving and the houses they buy will retain a lot more value. Plus if the company fails in the future the workers can find other jobs without moving.

Why didn't National's Special Housing Area's work to lower prices?

National granted certain areas SHA's which like a Club Zone created a housing zone outside the local council district plan.


The effect of the SHA's were to grant a windfall profit to the landowner.  There were never enough areas created to make competition so the developers just charged the full price for the sections. Under our system, House Club has the sole right to grant the zoning - so the landowner has no power and what would have been windfall profits is instead a much cheaper house for the club members.

Why can't KiwiBuild ever work?

KiwiBuild is Labour's flagship housing policy where the Goverment builds and sells YOU a house.


KiwiBuild cannot lower house prices much as it is working within the same RMA. local council and Building Act rules that the private sector is. Governments have no incentive to act fast - where developments in the Club Zones are being driven for the benefit of the members - everyone will want their house as soon as possible! 

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  • Graeme Farr
    published this page 2020-01-20 01:26:41 +1300