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Building activity reaches record high

Building and Housing Minister has welcomed today’s release of the latest figures from Statistics New Zealand which showed $14.6 billion of building work consented in 2014 – the highest ever.

“There were 24,680 consents issued across New Zealand with a value of $14.6 billion across New Zealand in 2014 – an increase of 16 per cent in consent numbers and 21 per cent in value on the total issued in 2013,” Dr Smith says.

“I’m particularly encouraged to see that 30 per cent of these consents were for Auckland. The 7595 issued in the city reflects a 20 per cent boost on the previous year and is a testament to the collaborative effort by the Government and Auckland Council to free up land faster and to speed up consenting under the Housing Accord.

“I am also pleased to see the positive numbers coming out of Christchurch. The 4389 consents issued there is the highest in any year on record and amounts to three times more houses being built each month now than there were before the earthquakes.

“These figures confirm the direction of the Government’s reforms to address New Zealand’s housing challenge. We now have Housing Accords in place with six local councils. We are also reducing building materials costs, reining in development contributions, cutting compliance costs and investing in skills and productivity in the construction sector.

“The Government has an ambitious agenda of further housing initiatives. We will be launching the KiwiSaver HomeStart scheme from 1 April to assist 90,000 first home buyers put together a deposit on a house.

“We also have our planned second phase of Resource Management Act reforms to be legislated this year, which is aimed at addressing the long-term issues affecting affordability and supply. We are also planning further initiatives in Auckland and Christchurch where the housing issue is most challenging.

“The Government remains committed to maintaining this momentum to support more New Zealanders into their own home.”

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