Advocacy in Action | June 2024

Build to Rent: Overseas Investment bill finally here!

Property Council has long (and actively!) advocated for a Bill in Parliament that will amend the Overseas Investment Act to encourage more Build to Rent (BTR) housing. The Overseas Invesment (Build-to-Rent and Similar Rental Developments) Amendment Bill will have its first reading in the House this week.

We know offshore institutional investors are spoilt for choice elsewhere, so it’s pleasing to see the government’s own words: “…the current provisions in the Act do not work well for BTR. Investors eventually need to sell rental developments, either as part of a planned divestment strategy or if facing fiscal distress. Given the high value of BTR developments (which are held as 1 asset), confidence in their liquidity is dependent on access to sufficient capital, of which the scale required primarily sits overseas.”

The Bill introduces a new streamlined test referred to as the “large rental development test” allowing investors to acquire provided they meet the investor test requirements, namely:

  • at least 20 residential dwellings (on a single site or adjacent sites) will be available for use under a residential tenancy under the Residential Tenancies Act 1986; and
  • the overseas person (and certain related persons) cannot occupy the land.

Where the above criteria are not met, the overseas person will be required to sell the development.

To learn more of what’s in the bill and help guide Property Council’s public submission, join our BTR taskforce, a great way to connect with fellow members in this growing and exciting form of housing. Contact Denise Lee

MBIE: review of seismic risk management in existing buildings

Last week, MBIE released their terms of reference for the review of seismic risk management in existing buildings under the earthquake-prone building system.

Property Council has been working behind the scenes with MBIE, providing feedback on what we think should be included in scope for the review. We were pleased to see that some of our feedback was incorporated in the terms of reference.

MBIE expects that the findings of the review and high-level recommendations for regulatory and non-regulatory measures to better manage seismic risk in existing buildings will be reported to the Minister in the first half of 2025. 

Engagement in Auckland

Auckland Council Development Contributions - the next round

Well ahead of September’s official consultation,  we’re holding a pre-engagement meeting with the Auckland Council rates team. If you’d like an early heads-up on their thinking, join our DC taskforce and hear more of their plans for development contributions in the inner Northwest (Redhills, Westgate, Whenuapai), plus other ‘Investment Priority Areas’ we expect to hear about (e.g. the five ‘Auckland Housing Programme’ areas – Tamaki, Mangere, Oranga, Mt Roskill and Northcote).

Property Council has been very active with this workstream for the last few years as we believe it is precedent-setting for the rest of the country.

The workshop with Council is on July 9th, 12:30 pm. RSVPs are essential to Denise Lee.

Join Property Council’s Time of Use Charging Taskforce

In June 2024, Auckland Council’s Transport and Infrastructure Committee endorsed the programme’s primary objective to “manage travel demand to achieve an improvement in road network performance by reducing congestion, increasing the throughput of people and goods, and improving the reliability of the road network.”

The next step of the report is to engage with stakeholders. This will involve engagement with Property Council New Zealand.

We are establishing a Time of Use Charging Taskforce to provide Auckland Transport with feedback on their project. If you are interested in joining, please contact Katherine.   

Join Property Council engagement with Auckland Council on the Southern Rural Strategy

Auckland Council are seeking to engage with us on the Southern Rural Strategy. The Southern Rural Strategy is an implementation action in the Future Development Strategy and is intended to provide further direction on the long-term land use and development of the southern rural area (see map below): 

If you are interested in providing feedback to Auckland Council, please be in touch with Katherine Wilson before Friday 5 July 2024.  

Author | Katherine Wilson

As Property Council’s Head of Advocacy, Katherine is tasked with leading our advocacy campaigns at both a regional and national level.

Level-headed and engaging, Katherine has both a law degree from Otago University and an arts degree (majoring in politics) from Auckland University. With solid experience as a policy analyst and advisor in Wellington and Auckland, she has extensive networks and solid analytical skills.

Katherine is hugely dedicated, highly intelligent and committed to ensuring the voice of our members is heard at all levels of governance. She’s also relentlessly positive and enjoys a good chat.

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