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Home building in Auckland lifts construction activity

Home building in Auckland drove an increase in the overall volume of building activity in New Zealand in the September 2018 quarter, Stats NZ said today.

Nationally, the volume of building work increased a seasonally adjusted 0.7 percent from the June 2018 quarter, driven by residential construction, up 1.2 percent. Over the same period, the volume of non-residential work was unchanged from the previous quarter.

“Auckland residential work picked up in the latest quarter, more than offsetting recent falls in Canterbury,” acting construction statistics manager Dave Adair said.

“While this quarter’s overall construction volume recorded a new high, construction activity has been around this level for two and a half years,” Mr Adair said.

Volume measures of building activity exclude the effects of increasing construction costs to show underlying changes in the volume of work.

Construction values in Auckland and Canterbury mixed

In seasonally adjusted value terms (which do not adjust for cost changes), Auckland residential work rose 7.0 percent from the June quarter (to $1.6 billion), the largest percentage rise since the June 2016 quarter. Residential construction in Auckland accounted for over a quarter of all building work in New Zealand in the September 2018 quarter.

The overall value of construction in Auckland increased 3.8 percent in the September quarter, with the rise in residential work partly offset by a fall in non-residential work.

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In Canterbury, overall building value rose 2.7 percent in the September 2018 quarter, due to a 13 percent rise in non-residential construction. Meanwhile, residential construction fell 5.0 percent, down for the third quarter in a row.

Value of building work versus building consents

The value of building work put in place shows construction completed each quarter, while building consents issued are an indicator of planned work (see Auckland home consents hit 13,000). Typically, more than 95 percent of consented building work is constructed over time (see Building plans put to work).

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