Building consents for new homes raced up almost 10 per cent in January, with more new houses planned in Auckland, Wellington and Bay of Plenty.
The trend for new house consents has risen 50 per cent since early 2011, Statistics NZ said.
Consents were issued for 1312 new homes in January, including consents for just 58 apartments.
Statistics NZ said that seasonally adjusted house consents, excluding apartments, were up 9.6 per cent in January, compared with December.
"We've seen continuous steady growth in the trend for the number of new houses consented since March 2011," Statistics NZ industry and labour statistics manager Blair Cardno said.
"Over 22 months, the trend has increased by 50 per cent.
"All of the growth in January 2013, compared with 12 months ago, was from the North Island, with increases in Auckland, Wellington, and Bay of Plenty regions."
Together, Auckland and Canterbury made up more than half of all new housing consents, as they had done almost every month since January 2012.
Compared with January a year ago, the 1312 new homes and apartments were up 19 per cent. Excluding apartments, new homes alone were up 39 per cent to 1254. The 58 new apartment consents in January were down from 198 in January last year.
There were 372 consents issued in Auckland in January, up 140 from January last year. But in Canterbury, the 378 consents were down one from the same month last year.