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Balanced View Needed on Building Consents

30 July 2013

Building Consents: Certified Builders Says Balanced View Needed

Certified Builders Association of New Zealand, the preeminent nationwide network of qualified and trusted builders, says the record increase in building consents for the June quarter 2013 comes as no surprise.

The Statistics New Zealand figures released today show a continued increase in the number of building consents issued in the Canterbury and Auckland regions during the last quarter, and fairly static numbers throughout the rest of New Zealand.

Certified Builders Chief Executive Grant Florence says the rosy growth in Christchurch and Auckland is great news for the construction industry but needs to be kept in perspective.

“The massive upturn in construction in Christchurch and the growing capacity in the Auckland market is going to keep going, and that’s great but it’s important to keep a balanced view when looking at the figures for the remainder of the country,” Mr. Florence said.

“It’s still pretty tough out in the regions for the building and construction industry. It is worth noting that at least eight regions experienced a lower level of consents for June 2013 compared to June last year, which is a concern.”

Mr. Florence says the building and construction industry is made up of small businesses - 70% work in an organisation with fewer than 20 employees, and half work in an organisation with nine employees or less.

He warns of a trade shortage looming in the two big growth areas. “This is due to a cumulative effect of a long down turn of activity in the sector and also the introduction of licensing of builders. The downturn has seen many trades move offshore to find work or decide to exit the sector,” Mr. Florence said.

“The introduction of licensing, although a positive move for the building and construction sector did see a number of experienced builders decide to move to other business or take early retirement.”

Certified Builders is also encouraging its trade qualified building owners to take on apprentices where they can.

“Although this is a long term solution for the shortage of trades, it is vital to the ongoing health of an important sector of the economy,” Mr. Florence said.

For the past eight years, Certified Builders has operated a partnership with 10 Institutes of Technology and polytechnics under the framework of ITAB. The ITAB programme, which includes class room learning, results in a Level 4 qualification and 8,000 practical hours. ITAB combines the best of the professional skills taught by the polytechnics with the practical, on the job training given by employer builders.

About Certified Builders Association of New Zealand
Certified Builders Association of New Zealand is a nationwide network of qualified, trusted builders. Certified Builders members are the only builders in New Zealand who are guaranteed to have trade qualifications (equivalent to or better than National Trade Certificate in Carpentry Level 4).

Established in 1998, Certified Builders has more than 2800 members – who are all Certified, trade qualified, trusted building professionals offering integrity, a proven track record and experience, and the best independent building guarantee in the business.

Certified Builders is literally a “community of craftsmen” who pride themselves on the standards of excellence and professionalism they deliver – and set the standards of the building industry in New Zealand.

ENDS

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