Home ownership is nudging a new low with the least number of Kiwis living in their own home in 66 years.

Nationwide 63.2 per cent of people today live in their own home - the lowest rate since the 61.2 per cent recorded at the 1951 Census - whereas 33 per cent live in a rental.

Statistics New Zealand Dwelling and Household Estimates data released today showed of the 1.8 million homes, 1.2m were owner-occupied in December 2016 and 604,900 were renting.

A record high of 73.8 per cent (848,916) was last recorded 26 years ago in 1991 - 10 per cent more than the latest figures. Renters in the same time period made up only about 23 per cent of the total.


Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little said the figures showed there was a need for political parties to do more for the growing numbers living in rental properties.

"With more Kiwis locked out of owning their own home and stuck renting, it's time for Parliament to come together and solve the crisis," he said.

He's called on other parties to back Labour's KiwiBuild and Healthy Homes Bills that were before Parliament.

The Healthy Homes Guarantee, which called for all rentals to be warm, dry and healthy to live in, has passed its first reading and was due to be presented before the House early this year.

The KiwiBuild Policy called for 100,000 affordable homes to be built and is due for its first reading.

"Our policies are ready and about to be voted on by Parliament. All parties should back them. If we work together, we can fix the housing crisis," Little said.

Home ownership rates

Lowest 61.2 per cent in 1951
Highest 73.8 per cent in 1991
Today 63.2 per cent