OPINION: I’ve always said my timing was lousy. For instance I’m a baby-boomer but too late in the cycle to have reaped many of the rewards. I was born too late to enjoy the nihilistic 60s and also just too late to benefit from New Zealand’s golden era of commodity prices in the 50s. I came onto the job market in the early 80s when the economy was tanking under Prime Minister Robert Muldoon and his bankrupt policies, and, just when I should have been hitting my straps, the sharemarket crash of 1987 hit.
By then I did have a house in Auckland, for which I paid top dollar at the time. When I needed to sell in 1991, the property market was dire and I made pretty much nothing on it. Had I waited a couple of years, it would have fetched double what I paid.
When we started a family, the family benefit scheme had long bitten the dust, and the Working for Families welfare benefits came in just as the kids were getting too old to qualify and my salary put the family just