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House building far below what’s needed

The latest building statistics show 2,500 houses were built in Auckland last quarter, when around 4,000 are needed, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.

“Nick Smith can crow all he likes. The reality is, these figures mean more families in overcrowded houses, more families in motels, more families in garages and cars.

“The average new dwelling consented in Auckland is valued at $400,000, not counting the land. Today’s building activity statistics show $1b of new residential construction in Auckland in the last quarter, which equates to 2,500 houses. That’s well short of the 4,000 a quarter needed to keep up with the burgeoning population.

“At this rate, Auckland’s massive housing shortage is growing, not shrinking. The city is already around 35,000 houses short and that’s growing by 500 a month.

“Bill English and bumbling Nick Smith have made a hash of the housing crisis with half-hearted measures and stunts. They are more concerned with trying to make voters think they are doing something than actually solving the problem.

“It’s simple: we’re not building enough affordable starter homes. The Government needs to do its part.

“Soon, Parliament will vote on Labour’s KiwiBuild Bill that requires the Government to build 10,000 affordable homes a year to sell to first homebuyers. If National wants to get serious about the housing crisis, they need to back the KiwiBuild Bill. They should also adopt Labour’s plan to boost the construction workforce with three years fees free tertiary study and dole for apprenticeships,” says Phil Twyford.