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$377 million for extra bedrooms and infill housing

Hon Dr Nick Smith

Minister of Housing

14 May 2013 Media Statement

$377 million for extra bedrooms and infill housing


Housing Minister Nick Smith today announced two initiatives which will result in the building of up to 3000 new state house bedrooms and 500 new homes.

Dr Smith said the first initiative is called Project 324&5 and is designed to convert three bedroom houses into four and five bedroom homes.

“Project 324&5 recognises that Housing New Zealand, and particularly Auckland, have an oversupply of three bedroom homes and a real shortage of larger ones,” Dr Smith said.

“The initiative is expected to deliver up to 3000 new state house bedrooms to 2000 properties over the next two years, with three quarters of them in Auckland.

“Adding an extra one or two bedrooms to these properties will better meet tenants’ needs in relation to size, location and amenity. It will also result in less overcrowding and better health and education outcomes.

“Properties targeted for modification will be houses which are up to 40 years old and on medium to large sections able to accommodate extensions and still have enough land to provide a decent outdoor area for tenants and their families.

“Some of the three bedroom houses involved in Project 324&5 will be expanded to five bedroom, two bathroom homes where this can be accommodated on the site and where there is demand in the community.

“Along with adding an extra bedroom the houses will also be modernised and upgraded, including work on landscaping and fencing.

“I’m confident the modifications can be done quickly, efficiently and with minimal disruption to tenants. Housing New Zealand has designed and trialled modular units that are suitable to most locations and that can be attached to existing structures.”

Dr Smith said the second initiative will see an additional 500 two bedroom state houses built over the next two years on large Housing New Zealand properties in Auckland.

“There is strong demand from Housing New Zealand tenants for more two bedroom homes in Auckland. This is a result of a shortage of supply and increasing demand for two bedroom properties, particularly for single people with caregivers, couples with children, and solo parents.

“The Simply Smart Homes infill project will see pre-fabricated modular homes, to minimise disruption to existing tenants, assembled on the sections of large Housing New Zealand properties in Waitakere, North Shore and Manukau.”

Project 324&5 is expected to cost up to $260 million and Simply Smart Homes initiative $117 million from Housing New Zealand’s Asset Management Strategy. The work will be completed by the 2015/16 year.

“These new initiatives are part of the Government’s Accord with the Auckland Council to increase the supply and affordability of housing. The issue of better utilisation of existing Housing New Zealand properties came up early in joint discussions. Mayor Len Brown and I both recognise that more housing is needed inside Auckland’s current urban boundaries as well as outside to accommodate population growth. The 500 new infill houses will contribute towards the target 39,000 houses over three years announced in the Auckland Housing Accord.

“These projects are also consistent with Housing New Zealand’s direction of reconfiguring its housing to be of the right size and in the right location to match tenants’ needs. It also meets the Government’s focus on ensuring state housing is targeted to people with the highest housing needs.”

ENDS


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