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12 May 2010

Q4 Industry Confidence Survey: Centralisation of Consents and Processing Time

2009 Q4 Building Industry Confidence Survey Results
eboss, the online technical library for the New Zealand building industry, has conducted its quarterly survey of building industry professionals to assess confidence levels amongst the architects, architectural designers, builders, engineers, interior designers, specifiers and suppliers that comprise the New Zealand building industry. More than 175 building industry professionals representing every region of New Zealand responded to the survey.

9. Centralisation of consents not expected to increase speed of processing

More than half of the industry (52.9%) say they do not believe centralising consents will increase the speed of processing, while 25.9% are confident processing time will improve.

One skeptical Southland Architectural Designer believes centralisation will actually increase processing time, saying, “the thing it will probably create for designers is more (queries) being direct back to them due to a lack of understanding of local site conditions and local authority district scheme regulations, which form part of the consent process along with the building act. This will cause more delays in processing consent for us and more frustrations.”

Mike Flooks is more optimistic and explains, “in the short term it won’t speed things up but long term it has the potential to. Obviously there will be a bedding in process.”

Derek Baxter believes the lack of confidence in reduced processing time has to do with Council liability. “One of the things that is impacting upon the Council’s processing time is that they are the last man standing when things go wrong. As a result of that they are very careful and risk averse, and therefore not fast! If we want to get an increase in speed we need a better allocation of risk across the industry. The government is looking overseas where they’ve brought in compulsory home warrantee insurance as one possible solution. Perhaps something like that would give the councils the confidence to take more risk and ultimately to speed up processing time.”

Download the full Q4 Building Industry Confidence Report here.

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