Falling consents adding to Auckland housing woes

Falling numbers of building consents being issued in Auckland will add to the city’s housing shortfall and fuel skyrocketing house prices, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford

“The Productivity Commission found there was a shortfall of around 32,000 houses by the end of 2014. It warned that if the number of new homes in Auckland don’t rise more than the current rate of about 8000 a year, there will be a 60,000 house shortfall by 2020.

“New building consent figures released today show that in the year to May only 8195 homes were built in Auckland.

“Auckland is drifting further and further away from resolving its housing shortfall.

“So far this year only 3329 homes have been consented in Auckland. If the 13,000 new homes needed to address the shortfall are to be built, there should have been 5417 consents issued.

“That means a further 2088 homes have been added to the shortfall in the past five months.

“It is concerning that Canterbury building consents are already slowing when there are still so many people not in their own homes. In the year to May there were 549 consents issued, down 9.3 per cent on this time last year and the fifth consecutive month it has fallen.

“The Government needs to recognise that the only way to fix the housing crisis is to back a large-scale affordable house-building programme.

“Housing Minister Nick Smith’s half-baked and piecemeal measures such as his surplus Crown land programme just won’t cut it,” Phil Twyford says.