New Zealand's government has announced ban on purchase of homes by foreigners. Soon-to-be Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced on Tuesday that ban would begin in early 2018. The measure is to address current housing crisis in New Zealand. For past few decades, overseas buyers have been snapping up houses as investments or for holiday homes in New Zealand. This has created increased demand for properties, which has seen house prices soar. Prices have risen by more than 50 per cent in last decade. New Zealanders are up in arms at inflated prices they now have to pay to buy home. Many citizens have simply been priced out of market and cannot afford to get on housing ladder.
Ms Ardern expressed her determination to end practice of overseas investment increasing property prices. She said: "We are determined to make it easier for Kiwis to buy their first home, so we are stopping foreign speculators buying houses and driving up prices. Kiwis should not be outbid like this." However, new measure will not apply to Australians. Furthermore, overseas investors will still be able to buy land. Ardern said changes would not stop non-residents or non-citizens from buying residential land to build house on. She stated: "Our position has always been that if you're adding to supply…then you will be able to build." Ardern said she hopes ban will "take some of the heat" out of property market.