Data Collection

Building consents issued frequently asked questions

Building consents issued frequently asked questions en-NZ
Building consents issued frequently asked questions en-NZ



Building consents issued – frequently asked questions

Building consents issued data includes the number, floor area, and value of planned new dwellings, and the floor area and value of planned non-residential buildings. It also includes the value of alterations and additions to existing buildings.

Building consents data reflects an intention to build. The value of building work put in place estimates the value and volume of work put in place on construction jobs.

What geographic levels are available?

  • Region

  • Territorial authority

  • Auckland local board

  • Statistical area 2 (for number of new dwellings)

  • Meshblock (customised data requests only)

Updated monthly in tables at Building consents issued - information releases and Infoshare

What does building consents data cover?


  • building consents issued with a value of at least $5000

  • estimated cost of building work including GST

  • floor area for new construction


  • building work that does not require a building consent

  • consents that are predominantly for demolition work

  • the cost of land

What are dwellings?

There are four dwelling types:

  1. Houses (stand-alone houses)
  2. Apartments
  3. Retirement village units
  4. Townhouses, flats, units, and other dwellings.

• Dwelling units is the total of all 4 types

• Apartments, townhouses, units, and other dwellings is a subtotal excluding houses, also referred to as multi-unit homes

• Sleepouts are generally not dwellings unless they are fully self-contained, including a kitchen and bathroom

• Student hostels, workers accommodation, boarding houses, prisons, and other accommodation buildings are non-residential buildings in our classification, so are not counted as new dwellings. See Building types V1.0.0 classification.

How do I find the number of new dwellings consented?

In Excel tables attached to monthly release Building consents issued - information releases Building consents issued: Mmm YYYY.xlsx from December 2021:

Table 1 - NZ actual number by type, total floor area and value by month (25 months) and year ended (6 years)

Table 2 - Seasonally adjusted and trend by month (49 months)

Table 3 - Monthly number and percentage change, by region and dwelling type (13 months)

Table 4 - Annual number and percentage change, by region and dwelling type (11 years)

Table 5 - Trend for selected regions (21 months)

Table 6 - Actual number by territorial authority or Auckland local board by month (13 months) and year ended (6 years)

Infoshare under Industry sectors > Building Consents - BLD.

What is the new dwellings number?

We publish the number of new dwelling units consented, not the number of consents for new dwellings.

Most new dwellings consented are intended as entirely new construction, but values also include conversions of existing buildings. For example, if an office building is converted to apartments, we treat them as new dwellings in our statistics.

The number of consents is usually lower than the number of new dwelling units, as some consents are for more than one new dwelling

• For stand-alone houses there is usually one consent per new dwelling.

• For complex projects such as apartment buildings and retirement village units, there are often several building consents (stages) for the project, issued across more than one month.

• For staged projects we capture the value at each consent stage, but only count the floor area and number of new dwelling units once (often at the first large stage).

For new plus altered, why is there no number or floor area?

• We don’t sum the new number (of units), with the altered number (of consents) as they are different measures. And there is no floor area data for alterations and additions.

• For new construction there is number of units, value, and floor area. The number of new residential units equals the number of new dwellings.

• For altered construction, there is value and number. The number is the number of consents, not the number of units. We don’t capture floor area for alterations and additions.

How are new dwelling averages calculated?

Use year ended (annual) data to calculate average values, price per square metre, and average size of new dwellings, as monthly statistics can be volatile. Also note that the types of new dwellings consented varies by area, with a higher proportion of multi-unit homes in urban areas, and of stand-alone houses outside of urban areas.

• the average value of new dwellings is the value divided by the number of units

• the average price per square metre (m2) for new dwellings is the value divided by the floor area

• the average size of new dwellings is the floor area divided by the number of units.

What is included in new dwelling floor area?

• any attached building such as a garage – around 36m2 for a standard double garage - is included in the floor area. This is partly why stand-alone houses tend to be larger than other dwelling types.

• for multi-unit homes such as apartments, any lobby, parking or other shared area is included in the floor area.

Why are there a lot of new dwellings in some areas?

• New subdivisions, apartment blocks, and transportable/ prefabricated dwellings increase the number of new dwellings in certain geographic areas.

• transportable/ prefabricated dwellings are counted where they are built (factory), not the destination - which may be in a different territorial authority area.

Can StatsNZ supply individual building consents data?

• StatsNZ does not supply individual building consents to any party except occasionally to the building consenting authority (BCA) that supplied it to us.

• Some territorial authorities sell building consent lists, such as Auckland Council and Christchurch city


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12 9/03/2022 10:13:35 AM
10 14/02/2022 3:46:30 PM
9 22/12/2021 10:58:26 AM