Oct 07, 2021 6:00 PM
James Palmer
New Zealand’s Housing Crisis: An overview of the real stats and state of housing in NZ

An overview of the real stats and state of housing in New Zealand, and a discussion on some of the solutions needed to tackle New Zealand’s greatest social crisis since the Great Depression.

James Palmer, BA, LLB - Chief Executive, Community Finance and Christian Savings.

Christian Savings is New Zealand’s only registered charity that is also licensed by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand as a non-bank deposit taker.  Christian Savings manages over $225m, with over $180m in loans to a range of not-for-profits and Community Housing Providers.    

James identified a need to grow impact investing to help meet New Zealand’s significant housing crisis.  He founded and launched Community Finance in 2019.  Community Finance is now New Zealand’s largest open impact investment intermediary established to facilitate investment into affordable housing.  The core focus is on permanent solutions delivered by reputable organisations who are equipped to take care of our most vulnerable New Zealanders. Community Finance has already advanced over $50 million to Community Housing Providers such as The Salvation Army and Community of Refuge Trust.  In 2021, Community Finance launched the Aotearoa Pledge to raise an additional $100m for impact investing through the housing sector.  By April 2021, $71m had already been pledged from a range of fund managers, KiwiSaver providers and community trusts and foundations.

At the Institute of Financial Professionals of New Zealand Gala event in May, James won the coveted Emerging Leader Award for 2021.