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Affordable Housing underway at Wānaka subdivision Hikuwai

Affordable Housing underway at Wānaka subdivision Hikuwai

Queenstown Lakes Community Housing Trust’s ground-breaking assisted ownership model, Secure Home, is coming to Wānaka for the first time – with six houses under construction at Hikuwai.

QLCHT is building two 2-bedroom, three 3-bedroom, and one 4-bedroom houses with local building firm, Breen Homes at the popular subdivision. Construction is due for completion April 2021.

QLCHT executive officer Julie Scott says the Trust is currently planning to allocate four of the properties into its assisted ownership model, Secure Home. The first of its kind in New Zealand, Secure Home is a programme where people purchase the properties through a 100-year land lease arrangement, with the Trust retaining ownership of the land in perpetuity.

“We have received a lot of  interest from our waiting list for people wanting to purchase one of these  homes through Secure Home. It’s exciting to be able to offer this programme to the residents of Wānaka for the first time,” Scott says.

The remaining two properties will be retained as long term rentals through the Trust’s various rental propgrammes.

The six sections were transferred to QLCHT by the developer, Exclusive Developments Ltd, as part of their obligation when the land was rezoned from rural to residential. This process, known as inclusionary zoning, enables a small portion of the value uplift created through the upzoning of land, to be shared with the community for the purposes of affordable housing.

Hikuwai developer Lee Brown says: “Although our development includes a portion of sections already pitched at the more affordable end of the market, it’s rewarding to know we are playing a role in helping a small number of families into their own homes, who would not otherwise be able to access home ownership.”

Wanaka-based QLCHT Trustee Phil Smith says Hikuwai is a sought-after subdivision. “Property sales have remained strong for Wanaka post COVID-19, and the Hikuwai subdivision provides good value for money. It’s in a desirable north-facing location, and just five minutes drive to the town centre, schools and the shores of Lake Wanaka.”

Established to manage and deliver affordable housing solutions to residents who cannot afford it,  QLCHT has several programmes in place to help low-moderate income households including public housing, assisted rental, rent-to-buy, and assisted ownership. It has assisted 177 households to date with another 55 expected over the next 12 months. It has 630 households on its waiting list currently, of which around 120 are Wanaka-based.


Wanaka-based QLCHT Trustee Phil Smith, and Hikuwai developer, Lee Brown.

For further information please contact:
QLCHT Executive Officer Julie Scott – 0276452447

About the Queenstown Lakes Community Housing Trust
QLCHT is a not-for-profit social enterprise created to manage and deliver affordable housing solutions to those vital to the community who cannot afford it. Initiated by Queenstown Lakes District Council in 2007, which recognised the affordability issue and acted upon it, the Trust is an independent entity operating throughout the Queenstown Lakes District.

Celia Crosbie
Written by Celia Crosbie
Celia is an award-winning former journalist who has worked for newspapers and radio stations in New Zealand and magazines in the United Kingdom. She has worked in public relations in both NZ and London. Celia also specialises in digital media strategy and website copywriting for SEO.