Housing and Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford spent a spiky 45 minutes at a parliamentary select committee hearing this week defending the slow progress being made on the Government's showcase policy, KiwiBuild.

So far, just 119 of the ultimate total of 100,000 homes have been built and a few have been bought by the Government under an underwriting scheme that protects developers from the cost of holding homes that failed to sell.

This week, it also became clear that cash buyers are emerging for KiwiBuild homes that voters may have assumed would assist struggling first-home buyers into a house.