So the surprise around the affordable house eligibility rules out yesterday was the $180,000 salary cap for couples.

We all quite rightly agreed the ceiling amount was a lot of money, which exposes two simple truths.

One, Housing Minister Phil Twyford has finally worked out, or been told, that you actually need quite a lot of money to buy a house.


What Phil wanted to do in the election campaign is have you believe he was the saviour of housing, that he was going to build thousands upon thousands of cheap homes that regular everyday Kiwis (Labour supporters, Kiwi battlers) could buy and move into.
All very Michael Joseph Savage, except this isn't 1935.

What he has discovered is that, and we had these numbers yesterday, you actually need well in excess of $100,000 a year income to buy a three-bedroom so-called affordable home.

And if Phil had put these homes out to the market he was intending to put them out to, no-one would be buying them because they don't have the money.

Which brings us to point two.

If you and your partner are earning $180,000 you should, if you have wanted to, already own a house. Because at $180,000 a year a house - even in Auckland - is still eminently affordable.

So really, if you're talking three-bed homes, you are only selling them to first home buyers and first home buyers who earn between $120,000 and $180,000 a year.
Not exactly a large pool I wouldn't have thought.

Factor this in as well: for those lucky enough to be in that small group of income earners, and haven't bought a house, guess what's going to happen.
They're going to buy one of Phil's houses, hold it for a couple of years and flick it on for a nice little profit.

They in their own way are going to be property speculators as supported and promoted by Phil Twyford of the Labour Party.
How ironic.


Now you could argue, and quite rightly, that's no different to anyone else who buys houses, and that is true.

But Phil has been pitching KiwiBuild as something completely different to what it actually is. He hasn't shifted the market, he hasn't made housing available to anyone who couldn't realistically already afford a house. And he hasn't actually built a house yet.

He's very Elon Musk like that - a lot of noise, a lot of promises, no actual houses.

So for the lucky few, if you earn $150,000, and you're in the market, thank Phil.

If he ever turns a key he's going to make you rich.