The fact that Adrian Orr has made headlines this week for basically saying nothing, tells you all you need to know about how absent the previous Reserve Bank Governor was, when it came to engaging with the real world, and the public.

I don't think I ever interviewed Graham Wheeler. I chatted with Alan Bollard, the man before him, periodically.

They are all a bit circumspect, given the power of their words to move markets.

But like all key jobs, a major part of the road to success lies in the personality of the person concerned.


Wheeler basically didn't have one, and wasn't interested in saying a lot.

Orr is a different kettle of fish, and a welcome one at that.

So what has he said that has got so much attention?

House prices might fall - you can see why that got a headline.

We obsess about houses. The price, the mortgage rates, the number of foreign buyers, how priced out of the market we are.

And, of course, the party piece, is there a bubble and will it burst?

So any sign of a hint of a price drop and we are all over it like a rash.

This started with Australia's issues. Sydney is falling, Melbourne has just gone negative. But when I say negative, it's infinitesimally small in terms of a drop.


But the key point is both those markets have had the same sort of hot run we have, so it doesn't take a genius to join a few dots.

There is no bubble, and most importantly what Orr went on to say, almost in a fine print sort of way, was house prices might fall. But they might go up to.

So in other words, who knows? And it would seem, not him.

Having been in the housing market myself recently, the word is from everyone, it's flat or flatish.

But even if prices do start to fall what is critical to remember, is that that fall will be nothing close to the rise we've enjoyed.

And that is how housing has to be viewed, it's a long term deal. Prices these past 10 years or so are up well in excess of 100 per cent.

So if we woke up tomorrow and prices collapsed by 10 per cent, the usual suspects would scream "fire", or "bubble".

But in all reality, house prices would be up 90 per cent instead of 100. In other words, not really a problem.

The basics have not changed, we don't have enough houses.

We aren't building enough houses, therefore demand still outstrips supply, and the ridiculous ban of foreigners this week won't change that either.

If immigration collapsed, it might. If the flood of apartments about to hit the market is too great, it might. There might be bits of the country that get sticky while others still grow.

But overall, in the big picture, our market is going nowhere dramatic, and certainly Orr isn't all that bothered.

And, as history shows us, we've never had a bubble.

Housing is a brilliant investment and none of that, for the here and now, is changing.