Otago takes crown for home building costs: Statistics NZ
Planning to build a new home? Otago is the most expensive place in the country to do so, new data reveals. The data, from Statistics New Zealand, also shows that Kiwis are building fewer homes but their floorplans have mushroomed by 60 per cent, thanks to a love of bigger houses.
The data shows that back in the mid-70s, 38,000 new homes were approved, and the average floor area was 110 square metres. Thirty years later, in August 2004, the building rate had dropped to 33,000 new homes and the average floor size had ballooned to 181 square metres.
Fast forward to today, 42 years later, the building rate had dropped again, to 30,000 new consents, although the average floor size had plateaued at 182 square metres.
Statistics NZ spokesman Neil Kelly said collectively New Zealand was building over a million square metres more in residential space than it used to, but that was not due to an increase in houses.
“This is because houses are now so much bigger than they used to be,” he said
There was also a large $196,000 gap between the most expensive and cheapest places to build.
Otago narrowly beat Auckland for the crown, with new homes in Otago costing on average $396,000 to build.
However, Otago costs are skewed by Queenstown, where the average cost was $445,000 – land not included.
Auckland building costs were $390,000, with a higher cost per square metre than Otago, but a smaller average dwelling size.
“We don’t have a lot of insight into the cause of the differences by region, but obviously we can make some educated guesses,” Kelly said.
Factors included availability of labour, cost of building materials and, in some regions like Christchurch, tighter construction rules.
The cheapest place in the country to build was the South Island’s West Coast at $274,000, followed by Wellington ($284,000).