The first thing you need to know about the new housing boom in Auckland is that it’s not just a question of new housing, but also of making it feel like one.
“If you’ve got a house, it’s like a little museum,” says Peter O’Malley, director of Auckland housing.
“If you’re not getting it right, it just doesn’t look right.”
“You’re trying to make the house look like a piece of art.
And the more you can make it that way, the more art you’ll get out of it.”
In the past, Aucklanders had to make up for the lack of available housing in their city by living on the fringes.
But this time around, that’s changing.
“We’ve had to build new housing in every ward, because the population of Auckland has exploded,” O’Mahils says.
“We’ve got to get people to live there, and that means putting the houses up.”
The houses are being built in the most efficient way, with prefabricated units being used instead of traditional prefab homes.
In the future, O’Mails predicts that houses will have a much smaller footprint than they do now, and people will be able to afford to live in the same area as their jobs.
The housing boom is also creating a whole new set of issues, not least of which is that Aucklanders are spending a lot more time looking after their cars.
And with car ownership at a record high in Auckland, the city is now facing a huge housing affordability crisis.
The Auckland Council recently announced plans to build more than 1,000 affordable housing units over the next five years, with more than 2,500 already under construction.
But, as with so many other things in Auckland these days, Ollamas hope that by creating a more inviting, welcoming city, the new homes will make Aucklanders feel better about living in the city, too.
Ollames believes that by putting more people in their homes, they will also get people out of their cars, and make the city a better place to live.
But the city council’s plan has faced a number of problems, particularly with Aucklanders living in houses.
According to a recent study, more than 40% of households in Auckland lack sufficient affordable housing.
This includes a quarter of Auckland’s people who live in properties that cost more than $100,000.
That’s more than double the city’s average income of $28,000, and far above the national average of $23,000 for a family of three.
It’s not surprising, then, that most of the council’s new housing projects are concentrated in the suburbs, with the majority of the housing projects currently under construction in Auckland’s North Shore.
But that’s not the whole story.
Even as the council is putting the finishing touches to its new housing plans, Auckland has already experienced a housing crisis that’s already made it hard to buy a house.
Since the financial crisis of 2008, housing affordability in the country has declined dramatically, with median prices falling to a record low of $200,000 in 2015, according to the National Housing Foundation.
And the impact of this housing crisis is already being felt across the city.
In 2014, Auckland recorded its highest number of homeless people ever, and this year, a new report found that more than 70,000 people are homeless in the City.
“There’s a real fear that Auckland is going to become the next Auckland,” Ollams says.
“There’s just so much anger that the housing situation in Auckland isn’t getting better, it hasn’t improved.”