Building consents rise for first time in three months

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BUSINESSDESK: New Zealand home building consents rose for the first time in three months in June, helped by an increase in Canterbury amid earthquake rebuilding and a jump in permits for apartments, including resthome units.

The number of new dwellings authorised, including apartments, rose a seasonally adjusted 5.7% after two months where the total fell by more than 7%, Statistics NZ says. Excluding the volatile apartments sector, consents rose 2.1%.

Residential building consents were up 27% in June from the same month last year. Consents for apartments jumped to 118 from 68 in May, with 47 of the total made up by retirement village units.

In the South Island, the biggest surge in consents was in Canterbury, which soared by 163, or 123%. In total, South Island consents climbed 83%, while those in the North Island gained 6%.

Canterbury consents identified as earthquake-related amounted to $45 million in June, down from $47 million in May but still the third-highest monthly total since September 2010, when the earthquakes began.

The value of consents issued in June rose 27% to $456 million from the same month last year.

For the year ended June 30, the value of consents for residential buildings rose 12% to $5.5 billion, while for all building types it gained 6.9% to $9.2 million.

The value of non-residential buildings rose 7.7% to $256 million in June from a year earlier.
 


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The building industry is on its knees and so is the NZ economy. We're a far cry from the 25,000-odd annual building consents required just to sustain the industry's infrastructure investment.

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Agreed, we need more building and for that to be economic and affordable, land supply needs to be increased. This does not need to mean swallowing up vast tracts of land around Auckland, if all our existing residential zoned land was rezoned to allow one dwelling per 300m2, with higher densities of one dwelling per 100m2 or 150m2 on all bus routes and within two kilometres of all train stations.

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