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Faster consenting with remote inspections

Hibiscus Coast App

Staff Reporter

09 July 2024, 8:25 PM

Faster consenting with remote inspectionsRemote inspections to streamline building process

The New Zealand Government is moving towards making remote inspections the default for building consents, aiming to simplify and reduce the cost of home construction, according to Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk.

“Building anything in New Zealand is too expensive and takes too long,” Penk said.

“Building costs have increased by 41 per cent since 2019, and it takes around 569 days on average to build a home, not including the time to get consent.”

The Hibiscus Coast, currently experiencing a surge in housing development, stands to benefit significantly from these changes.

Current in-person inspections often cause delays, as builders must wait for available slots, sometimes for weeks.

Remote inspections promise significant productivity gains by enabling more daily inspections and reducing the need for inspectors to travel, especially in congested cities and rural areas.

“Remote inspections offer significant productivity gains that make it easier and cheaper to build,” Penk noted.

However, he acknowledged that adoption is inconsistent, with some councils hesitant to implement them.

The Government's initiative aims to make remote inspections the standard nationwide, with benefits including lower costs, reduced delays, fewer transport-related emissions, and improved documentation and quality assurance for homeowners.

“The Government will release a discussion document in quarter three of 2024,” Penk stated.

This will provide an opportunity for councils and the building sector to give feedback on the best approach to implement this change.