Home building in the Queenstown Lakes District is on the
rise, and those in the industry are ''cautiously optimistic''
the trend will continue.
Figures provided to the Otago Daily Times show the
district recorded a 6.5% increase in the value of building
consents between the 2012 and 2013 calendar years.
But a far bigger gain, according to the Queenstown Lakes
District Council figures, was in the value of new houses,
units and cribs - up 18.8% from $179,410,936 in 2012, to
213,118,636 in 2013.
In that sector, the most notable change occurred in the
Wakatipu and Wanaka areas.
The value of new residential building in Wanaka went up 29%
(from $64,424,502 to $83,238,566), and Wakatipu 38% (from
$58,116,741 to $80,381,716).
The total value of all building consents in the district rose
by 19% in Wanaka and 16% in the Wakatipu region, but dropped
20% in Queenstown and 2.5% in Arrowtown.
Wanaka Placemakers spokesman Tim Davis was yesterday
cautiously optimistic the signs of a recovery in the building
industry would continue.
''We've definitely noticed an upturn but it's coming off what
was a very low base. It's difficult to predict where it will
Placemakers had increased its staff by one in the past six
months - to 21 - after cutbacks during the global financial
''We are beginning the slow process of increasing numbers
again, but off a very low base.
''We're nowhere near back to those heady days of 2008.''
Mr Davis said it was too early to predict the likely trend in
2014, with one large permit able to distort figures
''The trend looks good, but it's still early days.''
He found it ''extremely encouraging'' to read building work
on the 112ha Three Parks commercial and residential
development on the edge of the Wanaka township was expected
to start in 2015.
And next Monday, a two-week hearing begins into an
application to create a special zone for a proposed
1600-section subdivision on 222ha along Wanaka's northern
The same trend was evident in Dunedin, where the number of
building consents issued - and their combined value - had
The total number of consents issued was up just 0.84%, from
2499 in 2012 to 2520 in 2013, mostly for residential work,
council building consents team leader Robert Ramsay said.
However, the value of the consents issued was up 11%, from
about $198 million in 2012 to $219.9 million last year, he
Stonewood Homes Central Otago director Mark Harry said sales
were up 30%-35% on a year ago.
His company was getting new business from Auckland. He
believed people there were selling while the value of their
homes was high, retiring early and moving south.
His business was building about 40 houses a year in Wanaka
and Cromwell, Mr Harry said.
He noted the new Highlands Motor Sport Park had boosted house
building in Cromwell - particularly among motorsport fans,
some of whom had a large disposable income to spend on a
''I know that a lot of houses that were for sale got snapped
up pretty much as soon as that park was finished.''
He believed the region was in for ''quite a big boom''.
Building consents in the Waitaki district fell by more than
70 in 2013, compared with the previous year, but Waitaki
District Council regulatory services manager Lichelle Guyan
said although volumes were down on 2012, the average value of
those consents had increased in 2013.
In 2013, 577 building consents, worth a total of $47,288 876,
were approved, with an average value of $81,956.
In 2012, 655 consents were approved, worth a total of
$52,460,645, with an average value of $80,093.
In Clutha, building consents dropped from 532 in 2012 to 472
However, the overall value had risen nearly $3.8 million,
from $31,011,769 in 2012 to $34,780,740 last year.