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Annual building consents top 27,000

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

The latest figures from Statistics New Zealand showing 27,132 consents for the year and 2538 for the month of December are the highest in more than a decade and show residential construction is booming, Building and Housing Minister Dr Nick Smith says.

"The doubling in the annual rate of new home construction from 13,500 in 2012 to 27,000 in 2015 is unprecedented. This is the longest sustained growth in residential construction in New Zealand history and is now topping $1 billion per month. The December consent figures of 2538 are equally encouraging, as it is usually a quieter period with holidays. Last month’s figures were one of the strongest Decembers ever.

"I am particularly encouraged by the progress in Auckland. The annual rate of new house construction in Auckland of 9251 in 2015 is up 21 per cent on 2014, and has been growing at over 20 per cent every year since the Housing Accord was entered into with the Auckland Council. The 947 consents in December 2015 compares to 630 in December 2014 and 233 in December 2008 when National came to Government. I am also encouraged by the increasing proportion of townhouses and apartments in Auckland’s growth that will be an important part of the solution to the city’s housing challenges.

"Today’s figures are the latest in a recent series indicating the growing pace of Auckland’s new house build rate. The National Construction Pipeline Report has projected an extra 80,000 new homes will be built in the six years to 2020, as compared to the 30,000 in the preceding six years. The Household Labour Force Survey shows the number of people employed in Auckland’s construction industry has increased from 45,000 to 75,000 over the past three years.

"We need to keep our foot on the accelerator to ensure we support this positive momentum. The Government is continuing to free up more land faster through the Auckland Housing Accord, together with the council. We also have in place initiatives to constrain building materials costs, rein in development contributions, cut compliance costs and invest in improved sector productivity. Our new $435 million HomeStart support package, which came into effect last April, will help 90,000 people into home ownership over the next five years.

"The next steps in the Government’s programme include advancing new housing on Crown-owned land in Auckland, supporting the Auckland Council in the completion of the new Auckland Unitary Plan, consulting on a new Urban Development National Policy Statement, and reform of the Resource Management Act to address the long-term issues affecting housing supply and affordability."

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