Whānau Build – A Housing Crisis Solved – The Maori Party


Māori Party Co-Leader John Tamihere has announced a total solution for New Zealand Housing in an eight step programme

  1. Ensure that 50% of all Social Housing units be made available to indigenous people first.
  2. 2000 houses over the next two years built on Māori ancestral land.
  3. Immigration must be curbed until the supply side of housing meets the demand.
  4. Vacant and or empty houses will be taxed to force them into the housing market. For example there are 38,000 ghost/vacant homes in Auckland alone.
  5. The Overseas Investment Act must apply to all residential housing purchases as many of these ghost/vacant houses are owned by foreign interests.
  6. The market will not deliver in time or in quantity. Kaianga Ora will be tasked with re-entering development and to build social housing on Crown Land.
  7. Stop all sales of free hold land to off shore interests and faze in leasehold opportunities.
  8. Investment in residential property will be taxed, excluding the whānau home.

Tamihere launched the policy at the Waterview site, where as Whānau Waipareira CEO he has just finished building 120 Social Housing units. This was a once-in-a-generation opportunity to put Māori first so they would no longer be treated as second-class citizens, he said.

At a cost of $600 million – tagged from the Government announced $20 billion Covid Recovery fund – Whānau Build will allow Māori to build new homes on ancestral land, and 2000 will be built in the first two years.

“These houses will be funded by the state as a long-overdue investment that others have taken for granted. It will help in resetting and reorganising Māori whānau and Māori whenua by making available land for Papakaīnga and ensuring that our land is used in the best possible way,” Tamihere said.

Māori would also receive 50% of all new Social Housing rentals.

A ghost/vacant house tax – used effectively in Canada – and a 2% Capital Gains Tax on properties, not deemed a whānau home, would alleviate housing pressure.

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“It is expected this policy will free up over 50,000 houses and ensure that an asset class people invest in, but can never lose, has some consequences for the greater common good of our country.”

Indigenous First, the zero-immigration policy would also support the Whānau Build projects and stop market price gouging.

“Immigration must be stopped until the supply side of housing meets the demand side. Immigration is causing disruption and adding to the false elevation in demand and therefore elevation in prices,” Tamihere said.


Q: How much is Whānau Build costing?

A: $600 million

Q: Where will that money come from?

A: From the already identified $20b Covid Recovery fund

Q: How many homes will Whānau Build build?

A: 2000 in four years, built on Māori Ancestral land.

Q: Why do you think the Māori Party can build 2000 homes when Phil Twyford and all of Government resources could not deliver on Kiwi Build?

A: Because I am a developer who built 120 homes and just delivered them – and Māori already own the land.

Q: Who are you building the homes for?

A: Māori whānau.

Q: How can Whānau Build help Māori unemployment?

A: Because under the Whānau First overarching Māori Party Policy, all new projects – including Whānau Build and Social Housing Builds- will contain 25% of Māori working or contracting to it.

Q: Why should Māori get 50% of new social housing rentals?

A: Because Māori make up over 50% of the waiting list. Māori first.

Q: How do you plan to impose your new tax on ‘ghost houses’ that remain uninhabited for 3 months of longer?

A: Kiwis with holiday homes will not be penalised but foreign owners who purchase homes for Capital Gains Tax and leave them vacant will.

Q: Why a capital Gains Tax/land Tax?

A: Because investing in a residential property is like going to the casino knowing you can never lose. This deepens inequality ensures a society of have’s and have nots. Inequality thrives if Government does not correct it.

Q: Won’t the Overseas Investment Act prevent too much foreign ownership of ghost/vacant houses?

A: No, the Overseas Investment Act must apply to all residential housing purchases as many of these ghost/vacant houses are owned by foreign interests.

Q: Are you anti-immigration?

A: We are Indigenous First. Every immigrant will accept that in the country where they came from, indigenous/Tangata Whenua should come first, not last. Further our immigration stand is colour, race, and creed neutral. It is straight economics. When our housing stock meets demand, immigration can proceed.

Q: Why block free hold land sales?

A: We are not making more land. Foreign investors can and do arrive with deeper pockets given our low wage economy and do out price us. Countries like China to the UK and USA have long leaseholds that allow foreign investments but not forever alienation. We are forever but custodians and our mokopuna will always have a right to reverse the mistakes or successes of their grandparents when leases come up for renewal.

Read the WHĀNAU BUILD policy here.


  1. Isn’t there already a tax on investment properties?
    So is this 2% tax on top of the present tax and does it exclude the TraitorKey ‘Bright-line’ (now five year?) tax loop hole?


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