Building consent figures continue to riseHousing
Housing Minister Dr Nick Smith has welcomed today’s release of the latest building consent figures from Statistics New Zealand which show the upward trend in the number of consents issued is continuing nationwide.
“There were 22,705 building consents issued across New Zealand in the year to April 2014 – the highest number of consents issued nationally in any 12-month period since the year to June 2008, and a 27 per cent increase on the same period the year before. This continues the trend of growth with the number of consents continuously rising since March 2011,” Dr Smith says.
“We are seeing this trend also reflected in Auckland and Christchurch. In Auckland, more building consents were issued in the year to April 2014 than in any other 12-month period since the year to February 2007, and a 41 per cent increase on the same period the year before.
“Meanwhile, Christchurch saw the highest number of consents in the year to April 2014 than in any other 12-month period on record, and a 103 per cent increase on the previous year.
“I hope to see this positive trend continue. Earlier this month I announced the third tranche of Special Housing Areas under the Auckland Housing Accord agreed to between the Government and the council. This has brought the total number of Special Housing Areas established to 63 with a potential yield of 33,500 homes across Auckland. We have also agreed to an Accord in Christchurch to help restore the city’s housing stock to pre-earthquake levels and ease the pressure on its rental and temporary accommodation markets.
“We recognise however that the housing challenge is not just limited to Auckland and Christchurch, and we have negotiations underway for further Housing Accords in Wellington, the Bay of Plenty and Queenstown.
“We also have a complementary programme of work underway which includes reducing building material costs, reining in development contributions, cutting compliance costs, investing in skills and productivity in the construction sector, and supporting first home buyers through our Welcome Home Loan and KiwiSaver First Home Deposit Subsidy schemes.
“Today’s figures confirm the Government is making good progress in addressing New Zealand’s housing challenge. There is no magic bullet to solving the housing challenge but we are on the right track and delivering real results.”