According to a report by The Guardian, the Clutha district, in Otago, New Zealand, has nearly 1,000 open jobs, but not enough people to fill them. To fix that that, the local town of Kaitangata is offering brand new houses and a quarter-acre of land for just $165,000 ($230,000 NZD) -- less than half the price ($394,482 USD) of even affordable housing sold by New Zealand's federal government.
“We have got youth unemployment down to two," Clutha Mayor Bryan Cadogan told The Guardian. "Not 2% – just two unemployed young people.”
The situation has been so dire, the main industries in the area, including a dairy farm, have been forced to bus in workers from over an hour away in regional capital Dunedin.
Kiwis have recently been struggling with a housing crisis, as real estate prices in Auckland have jumped almost 80% in only five years. To combat that problem, the 800 residents of Kaitangata have forged a plan to offer new houses and parcels of land for the meager sum of $165,000.
"It won't appeal to everybody, but it has got to appeal to the odd person that wants their own quarter-acre [section] and their own Kiwi dream," Kaitangata farmer Evan Dick told Radio New Zealand.
While Kai, as it is lovingly called, offers only a pub, a dairy, and a fish-and-chip shop, the nearest supermarket is only an 8-minute drive, and of course, there's all that beautifiul New Zealand landscape.
"The river, you can go fishing, catch whitebait and do all the outdoorsy things.. for half the price of a house in Auckland," said Ross Pudney, who moved to Kaitangata six years ago.
Now that the Kai's out of the bag, of course, Mayor Cadogan has gotten nearly 10,000 messages -- 5,000 unanswered phone calls alone -- since the story first came out a few days ago.
"We’ve been getting smashed,” he told The Guardian.
And it all makes sense -- a new house, a plot of land, and the lush South Island landscape, all for the same price it'd cost you to buy a home in Nebraska.
Really, it sounds like a dream come true.