18 Apr 2018

Master Builders alone could build 1000 homes in 2018

11:36 am on 18 April 2018

Prefabrication is key to increasing construction to meet the country's growing housing needs, Registered Master Builders says.

No caption

Photo: RNZ

Speaking to RNZ's Morning Report, Registered Master Builders chief executive David Kelly said he wanted to partner with the government to increase housing production.

"The discussion we've have with the government is that we support the need to lift the level of residential construction because we've been under-building for a number of years."

He said Registered Master Builders could use prefabrication to achieve the government's goal of building 1000 new homes this year, and it only makes up about a third of the industry.

"Prefabrication, or offsite manufacture in various ways I have no doubt is going to grow," he said.

"A good example is ... elements of the building like roof trusses are often manufactured offsite, or prefabricated and moved onto site as opposed to the traditional way of building the trusses on site."

He said about a quarter of the commercial sector was talking about 3D printing and a quarter were talking about smart materials which would allow monitoring of the building throughout its life.

Those were very tranferrable to housing, particularly in high density such as apartments or medium density as was seen more and more in Auckland.

"We can't resolve things with land and land availability, we can't resolve problems with infrastructure."

This was not just a council issue, he said.

"I think central government ... need to do a lot of the thinking around that process.

"There is some work to do. I am confident if we all have the same goal we will get there."