Building a new home? Here's the places in NZ where you can build for less.

According to data provided by statistics NZ, the cheapest place in the country to build was the South Island's West Coast at $274,000, followed by Wellington ($284,000).

In the North Island, the district with the lowest average building costs was Kawerau ($200,000), and in the South Island, it was Grey district ($252,000).

Within Auckland, the cheapest place to build was Manurewa-Papakura ward ($266,000), and the most expensive was Waitemata and Gulf ward ($532,000).

Otago is the most expensive place in the country to do so, new data reveals.

The data shows that Kiwis are building fewer homes but increased their floorplans by 60%. Back in the mid-70s, 38,000 new homes were approved, and the average floor area was 110 square metres. Whereas today - 42 years later, the building rate had dropped to 30,000 new consents, although the average floor size had plateaued at 182m2.

Otago narrowly beat Auckland for the crown of the most expensive city to build, with new homes in Otago costing on average $396,000 to build. Queenstowns average cost was $445,000 - land not included.

Auckland building costs were $390,000, with a higher cost per square metre than Otago, but a smaller average dwelling size.

Factors included availability of labour, cost of building materials and, in some regions like Christchurch, tighter construction rules. Also, the mix of housing could influence a district's costs for example, apartments are generally cheaper to build per dwelling but they're generally more expensive to build per floor area because you're building big tall homes and everything that goes along with that." 

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