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Govt spending $6m a day to house people

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 20/04/2017

A new $5 note. © Mark Tantrum/Getty Images A new $5 note. The Government spent $550 million over the last three months to support New Zealanders with a roof over their heads - the equivalent of $6.2 million every day, says Social Housing Minister Amy Adams.

Ms Adams on Thursday released the latest Social Housing Quarterly Report for the March 2017 quarter, which shows that waiting times are down.

"We're helping more people than before, and sooner. 1800 families were helped off the register into suitable housing, and they spent less time waiting to be housed," Ms Adams said.

The report shows the increase in the Housing Register has slowed slightly.

At the end of March there were 4865 applicants on the register - up two per cent from 4771 in the previous quarter. The median time to house was down eight per cent.

The report shows 9218 emergency housing Special Needs Grants were paid to 2616 clients, totalling $8.8m.

"As more transitional and social housing is secured, we expect the need for the Special Needs Grant to decrease," Ms Adams said.

"These numbers underscore the importance of our plan to grow the number of social houses available, from 66,000 today to 72,000 over the next three years."

Figures at a glance:

* $550 million total housing support provided in March 2017 quarter (89 days)

* Helped 1800 households into homes

* 4865 people on the housing register - up 2 per cent on last quarter

* 9218 emergency housing Special Needs Grants paid to 2616 clients - total spent $8.8m.

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