We're now a few weeks post Budget 2018 and our initial analysis focussed on the fact that there wasn't a great deal to report.

Since then we've been able to digest the information a little more and focus on what wasn't in there.

So what was conspicuous by its absence on Budget Day 2018?

For me, the big one was the lack of any real detail as to how the Government is looking to embrace prefabrication and modular building to enable faster, affordable residential construction to happen. Of course we have KiwiBuild firmly in mind here. There's no secret the Kiwibuild target of 100,000 additional homes in 10 years is fairly ambitious.


And that's without even putting the word 'affordable' in there.

The challenges the whole industry faces are considerable — I'm talking challenges to the banking industry to fund it, councils to reduce red tape, the Government to ensure skills and build quality are high, builders to embrace these techniques and processes.

Even with the ramp up targets being back loaded, we can't rely on the old way of doing things.

Westpac has started things going with its dedicated funding for pre-fabs, so that's a start. We also know the Government has employment apprentice schemes, but although this is already in place, we don't know how realistic it is or how well it will be taken advantage of.

Maybe the detail will come from MBIE at some stage, but right now it's hard not to agree with the cynicism from within the industry about how likely it is that KiwiBuild is going to do enough to improve our housing supply, especially in Auckland.

One thing I can say, the Budget covered funding for supporting and building public housing, which may form part of KiwiBuild itself, but it is unlikely to have any major impact on the private property market.

Perhaps part of the reason the Budget didn't have much for property is that nearly everything the government had to offer had already been announced, and some implemented.

Until the market behaves in a more robust and less volatile way, both the public and private sector will continue to weigh in.

We can't use the past to predict the future. What affected the market 10 or 20 years ago may not be relevant now, and what's impacting the market now may not exist much longer.