Pacific Island people, the poor and the young are bearing the brunt of Auckland's housing crisis through falling home ownership rates and crowding, a new report based on Census data shows.

Housing Minister Nick Smith says the Government is aware of housing pressures on particular ethnic groups and is working on specific initiatives for Pacific communities.

Statistics NZ's Housing in Auckland report out yesterday underlined the growing shortfall in housing; while Auckland's population grew by 8.5 per cent between the 2006 and 2013 Censuses, the number of dwellings increased by only 7.6 per cent.

Since the 1990s, Auckland's housing had changed so much it was distinct from the rest of New Zealand with more multi-storey dwellings, lower rates of home ownership, more renting, and house prices that had risen to higher levels than the rest of the country, said the report's author, Rosemary Goodyear.


"It is not only young people who have been affected by the fall in home ownership. There have been substantial drops in home ownership for Aucklanders aged in their 30s, 40s and 50s since 2001."

The report found while Auckland's rate of home ownership - including homes owned by households through trusts - was similar to the rest of New Zealand in the mid-1980s at just under 74 per cent, it had now fallen to 61.5 per cent compared to the national figure of 66.2 per cent.

While home ownership rates had fallen across all of Auckland's ethnic groups since 2001, the drop was greatest among Pacific Island people - down 8.3 percentage points to 17.4 per cent.

The report also highlighted the large differences between ownership rates of households with different income levels.

The latest Census shows more than three-quarters of Auckland households with income over $100,000 owned their home compared with less than two thirds of those with income of $70,001 to $100,000. Only 57 per cent of those with income of $50,001 to $70,000 owned their home.

Although crowding had decreased among households across the country since 1991, it had remained persistently high in Auckland where one-in-seven or 203,817 people lived in crowded households.

People aged 20-24 were most likely to live in a crowded household and crowding was highest among the Pacific Island community with 45.3 per cent living in crowded households last year.

Dr Smith said the report contained few surprises. "But it does provide some more accurate numbers around the key elements of Auckland's housing challenge."


He said he had spoken with Pacific churches about "expanding the sorts of proposals we've got at Weymouth [affordable housing project]".

Seeking shelter

• Home ownership rates are lower in Auckland (61.5 per cent of households) than elsewhere in New Zealand (66.2 per cent).

• The percentage of households renting in Auckland at 35.4 per cent is higher than the rest of the country and has risen from 32.4 per cent in 2006.

• Home ownership rates among Pacific Island people have fallen 8.3 percentage points to 17.4 per cent since 2001.

• One-in-seven or 203,817 Aucklanders now live in crowded households, including 45.3 per cent of the city's Pacific people.