The number of new homes consented in Auckland for the year to November has topped 10,000 for the first time in 12 years, Building and Construction Minister Dr Nick Smith says.

“The 1156 consents issued in Auckland during November makes it the strongest month in more than 10 years. It is more than treble the 325 consents issued in Auckland in November 2008, when National became Government. We need to consistently achieve more than 1000 consents per month in Auckland to match population growth,” Dr Smith says.

“It’s great to see such strong growth in our area of greatest need but this isn’t just an Auckland story; 30,303 consents were issued nationally for the year to November 2016 – up 13 per cent on the previous November year and the second consecutive month where we’ve topped 30,000.

“The value of residential construction nationally increased 23 per cent for the year to $12.45 billion, and all construction increased 15 per cent to $19 billion. In Auckland, residential construction is at $4.8 billion, up 32 per cent, and all construction is worth $7.2 billion, up 30 per cent.

“This is the fifth straight year of strong growth in construction, with growth averaging more than 20 per cent per annum. This is as fast as you can practically grow a sector as large and as complex as construction without compromising quality,” Dr Smith says.

“This ongoing strong growth shows the Government’s programme to increase housing supply is working. We have aggressively increased land supply with Special Housing Areas in the short-term, changes to Auckland’s planning in the medium term, and the National Policy Statement on Urban Development Capacity and Resource Management Act reforms in the long term.

“We have complemented this with the Crown Land Programme and a record level of direct Government projects to build homes, such as Hobsonville. We’ve also provided record levels of assistance for first-home buyers with the KiwiSaver HomeStart scheme, which has helped more than 20,000 people into their first home with about $500 million in KiwiSaver withdrawals for a deposit.

“This Government is step by step, development by development, getting on and addressing New Zealand’s housing challenges.”

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