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Building and Construction Minister Dr Nick Smith and Nelson Mayor Rachel Reese today signed a three-year extension to the Nelson Housing Accord to help grow the city’s housing supply.

“The Accord signed today provides the basis for the Government and the Nelson City Council to continue working together to ensure sufficient sections and homes come on stream to match the region’s strong economic and population growth. The answer to Nelson’s housing issues is helping get more homes built,” Dr Smith says.

“We’ve increased our targets in the renewed Accord. Over the next three years – 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2019-20 – we’re aiming for 450 sections and 900 homes. We need 300 homes per year to be constructed to be meeting the projected population growth of 500 per year. It’s a 50 per cent increase over the current rate and will help address the extraordinary growth in the Nelson region. Average house prices in Nelson have increased 16 per cent in the past year and the most effective tool to constraining price rises is increasing supply.”

Ms Reese says the renewed Housing Accord will enable new Special Housing Areas (SHAs) to be created.

“Nelson City Council recently approved 13 additional SHAs for recommendation, doubling the number of SHAs in Nelson and potentially adding about 410 dwellings to Nelson city. The Council has also committed to appointing a new SHA co-ordinator to ensure these new targets are achieved,” she says.

The Housing Accord was first entered into in June 2015, setting a goal of 200 additional sections and 480 new homes over two years. In the first year of the Accord (2015-16) 125 new sections were issued with titles and 180 dwellings consented. The final figures for 2016-17 are not yet known with one month of data to come but are on track to be well up on 2015-16. This growth has been assisted by the 13 new SHAs that have been established in this year. Of these, 11 have started granting consents, with a projected yield of 470 dwellings.

“Nelson and Tasman are enjoying a record building boom, with $350 million of work consented in the past year. This renewed Accord with Nelson will ensure we keep up this pace of strong investment and growth,” Dr Smith concluded.

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