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Housing allowances in comparative perspective$
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Peter Kemp

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9781861347541

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781861347541.001.0001

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The New Zealand experience of housing allowances

The New Zealand experience of housing allowances

(p.39) three The New Zealand experience of housing allowances
Housing allowances in comparative perspective

David C. Thorns

Policy Press

This chapter examines the last 20 years of debate and change with respect to the role of housing allowances within New Zealand's housing policy. The country is still predominantly a home-owning society, which the new National Housing Strategy being strongly endorsed. However, over the period under review a major reshaping was undertaken that privileged housing allowances as the form of state assistance to address problems of affordability for beneficiary and low-income households. The results were mixed. More were in receipt of such allowances after changes made in the 1990s, but housing-related poverty also increased during the 1990s, suggesting that the level of allowances and their take-up were inadequate on their own to address income deficiencies and supply problems. Some improvements have occurred since 1999 and the return to income-related rents has reduced the impact of housing on poverty.

Keywords:   housing assistance, housing policy, National Housing Strategy, poverty, New Zealand

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