If elected, National would pass emergency legislation in its first 100 days to force councils to open up more land for housing then it would scrap the Resource Management Act.
National unveiled its housing policy this morning and has mooted scrapping the RMA and building more social housing.
Leader Judith Collins said there was now consensus across politicians and experts that planning rules are primarily to blame for New Zealand having "some of the most expensive houses in the world".
Collins unveiled the policy today at a new housing complex in Papakura and will speak to media about the policy at 10.45am.
Collins said Labour was turning New Zealand into "a nation of renters" with the dream of home ownership slipping further away and said, if elected, her party would "fix this".
National pledged to do this by:
• Passing emergency legislation within 100 days of forming a government to amend the RMA and require councils to permit more housing.
• Repealing the RMA within the term and replacing it with new legislation.
• Allowing social housing tenants to buy their homes through a rent-to-own or shared equity scheme.
• Allowing Community Housing Providers to access $1 billion from Kāinga Ora's borrowing facility so they can build more social houses.
National's housing spokesperson Jacqui Dean said the emergency legislation would be similar to that used for the Christchurch rebuild.
It would require all councils to immediately open up 30 years of growth for urban development in Tier 1 and Tier 2 urban areas and establish a fast-tracked consenting process.
The council would retain the ability to decide the mix, but the government would control the volume they must zone.
The emergency legislation would also suspend the appeals process so district
plans can be completed right away and suspend requirements for infrastructure
to be built prior to zoning.
"If we have 30 years of land zoned for apartments or townhouses, it will give people choices on where they add density. Infrastructure can be built as density is built [if necessary]."
National said people "may fear" these zoning rules would mean apartments in areas with character houses.
"We believe our approach will actually provide more opportunity for areas of high character to remain in housing as developers will have more choices for where they wish to invest in density.
It would also extend the Covid-19 Recovery (Fast-Track Consenting) Act until the government can repeal the RMA.
And under its rental policy, National would:
• Support the Healthy Homes provisions but simplify the requirements.
• Remove ring fencing of rental losses for tax purposes.
• Move the bright line test from five years back to two years. The bright line test is the number of years someone has to own a house before selling it without the profits are taxed. Labour moved it out from two to five years in an effort to target property investors.
• Repeal the Residential Tenancies Amendment Act ends "no-cause" evictions.
Dean called Labour's rental regulations "unwieldy" and said good landlords were "fleeing the market due to cost".
Social Housing spokesperson Simon O'Connor said National would allow social housing tenants with good track-records to buy their homes through a shared equity scheme.
National's housing policy has been costed at $480 million over five years.
Q: What happens if a council doesn't have the infrastructure for zoning residential land?
A: "Councils will have a choice of whether to zone new housing subdivisions or allow greater density – 'going up or going out'.
"If a council is not able to zone new rural land for housing due to infrastructure constraints, they will need to zone greater density within their existing urban area.
"Note that the demand on the central city infrastructure won't occur right away. There is
a lag time between when the land is zoned and when density occurs.
"Councils will need to use this time to deliver infrastructure, using the National Infrastructure Bank if necessary. This is in line with National's approach of moving away from building infrastructure 'just in time'."