New Zealanders now have an extra 8,000 warm, dry public housing places to call home, under a Government public housing programme that is full steam ahead, says Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern today.
“Of the 74,337 households now being supported in public housing places, more than six thousand (6,503) are living in brand new public homes built since November 2017 under this Government.
“We believe every New Zealander deserves to live in a warm, dry home and that the state has a role in helping make that happen. We have committed to adding over 18,000 public and transitional housing places by 2024 and this is well on track,” Ms Ardern said.
Housing Minister, Megan Woods said at the opening of six newly built one-bedroom state homes in Spreydon, Christchurch, that delivering over 8,000 additional public housing places is a great milestone to celebrate.
“Between November 2017 and 30 June 2021, 8,121 public housing places have been added by Kāinga Ora and Community Housing Providers, taking total public housing places to 74,337,” Dr Woods said.
“Together, Kāinga Ora and Community Housing Providers delivered 6,503 newly built homes over this period, sometimes replacing old houses that had passed their use-by-date and allowing a greater number of homes on the same site.
“We inherited a housing crisis following a hands-off approach from the last National Government, which had a mass state housing sell-off, ending up with a net 1,500 fewer public housing places.
“We have rebuilt the public sector’s ability to plan and build new housing and have also more than tripled the amount of funding for Community Housing Providers (CHPs) to deliver more housing, as we all work together to resolve this housing crisis.
“I have set an expectation for both Kāinga Ora and the CHP sector that as many of the public housing places as possible, should be new builds.
“While this isn’t always possible if they need to provide urgent housing, we have made great strides in adding new stock; about87% of Kāinga Ora’s additional housing places (public and supported) delivered in the last financial year were new builds, from a low under National of just 24% in 2010/11.”
She said the public housing programme was supporting people with rent subsidies and places to live, as well as enabling more new homes to be built with infrastructure investment, and intensification of housing following the demolition of old housing that is no longer fit for purpose.
“We are seeing massive growth in construction activity in the housing sector, with new home consents at an all-time high of 44,299, in the year ended June 2021.”
“Building new housing not only means people have warm, healthy, new homes, but the construction sector is also supported, including through workforce development; apprenticeships in the building and construction sector have nearly doubled since 2017 to 23,000 apprenticeships.
“Our housing programme is helping New Zealanders and our recovery from the economic impacts of COVID-19,” Dr Woods said.