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Home building slumped further last month, with the 1328 new housing units authorised in August the lowest monthly total since December 2000, Statistics New Zealand (SNZ) says.

Residential building consents issued in August were valued at $457 million, down $308 million from August 2007, and the lowest monthly total since April 2006.

The seasonally adjusted number of authorised new dwellings, including apartments, fell 7.9 per cent in August compared to July, while excluding apartments, the number fell 8.9 per cent.

Non-residential building consents were valued at $362m, down $36m million from a year earlier.

For the year ended August, the value of consents issued for residential buildings was $6.83 billion, 13 per cent lower than in the year ended August 2007.

The value of non-residential construction authorised for the year rose 6 per cent to $4.38b.

SNZ said the trend for the number of new housing units had been falling since mid-2007, dropping 42 per cent since then.

The trend for the total value of residential building consents was down 33 per cent in the same period.

The value of consents issued for all buildings in August was $819m, down 30 per cent from a year earlier, while for the year the total value was down 6.6 per cent to $11.2b.

- NZPA