The taxpayer, rather than developers and home buyers, should pick up the bill for connecting new homes to water, sewerage and other council infrastructure, think-tank the NZ Initiative has recommended as a measure to control house prices.
The proposal is one of three the think-tank came up with in a report on home affordability put out yesterday.
NZ Initiative executive director Oliver Hartwich said declining home affordability was down to "poor policy which has fostered an anti-development sentiment among local councils".
The think-tank proposes a "Housing Encouragement Grant", to be paid by central Government, be benchmarked on the GST levied on the cost of building the house, which would mean a $60,000 grant for a $400,000 house.
The report also recommends stripping the provision of water from councils and making that the responsibility of five specialised council-owned companies across the country, including Auckland's WaterCare.
The third proposal is to allow private companies to compete with councils for the provision of infrastructure.
• To view the full report, click here.