Monday, August 07, 2017

Getting stuff Built

David Hargreaves writes: If you can't make builders put a spade in the ground, and the bankers give them the money, it ain't going to work

Darn tootin' right.

It looks to me like some sorta Compulsion is gonna be needed to get anything moving, because the current modus operandi won't, and for perfectly clear reasons:

  1. The Planning is local, and incompetent at that, but the economic drivers - immigration, banking, building standards, materials costs are all central, not to say Cartelised
  2. The building industry would be quite familiar to someone from the 19th century, plonked onto a building site. A couple of days to come up to speed with nailguns, glues, portable power tools and materials, and they'd be clonking frames together in the rain along with the best of 'em
  3. The price of land screws up everything on top, so that';s why it's only worth building large footprints, and for the upper quartile of the market
  4. TLA's, desperate for non-Rates revenue streams, charge for everything they possibly can and, like the financiers, are adept at inventing ever longer chains of tickets to clip. And as a local monopoly, fat chance of getting any competitive behaviours to sort That out.

So the way forward will have to involve some combination of the following:

  • Remove TLA's incompetent hands from the Planning Tiller by simply nullifying all local Plans, and letting the effects-based RMA handle the lot
  • Remove BRANZ etc control and simply adopt whatever international standards seem appropriate for materials. We don't use BRANZ to certify materials for boats, caravans or planes, Why do they need to be in the loop for Houses?
  • Hosuing factories - lotsa them. Everything CNC, fitted out in QC conditions, under cover. Litmus test: that 19th-century builder should be totally, utterly lost on the factory floor.
  • Land, of course. So compulsorily acquire everu scrap of greenish land wherever thought appropriate, use Kiwisaver investors to finance it as there will be a return as it's developed and sold, and develop/sell it using the usual PPP approach. But, and importantly, the CG thus invented has to stay largely in the public side (KS returns, Gubmint's General Account) and applied largely to the replacement aspects noted above - getting factories, standards, etc up and humming, and a bit of trust-busting amongst the Cartels.

A thought experiment, of course - the safest kind....but at least it is Relentlessly Positive (unless yer a Planner).

No comments: