'No one cares' about National's housing record - Judith Collins

"No one cares" about National's much-criticised housing record anymore, the party's housing spokeswoman has claimed.

Judith Collins, who took over from Michael Woodhouse in the weekend's shadow Cabinet reshuffle, told The AM Show on Friday Kiwis are now focused on Labour's lack of progress on KiwiBuild.

The previous National Government came under increasing criticism for its perceived lack of action on affordable housing, as prices doubled, ownership rates fell and homelessness grew.

Housing Minister Phil Twyford, appearing alongside Ms Collins, said he felt "compassion" for her taking on the housing role for National after "nine years of total failure".

"No one cares about that," Ms Collins told Mr Twyford. "What they care about is you not building a house yet, mate. You've had 140 days, how many have you built?"

Labour's KiwiBuild programme promises 100,000 affordable houses in 10 years, half of them in Auckland. Mr Twyford said the scheme will kick off in July, and people "would have been a bit sceptical if we'd announced a whole lot of houses being built in our first couple of months in Government".

"I'm very confident we're going to meet our targets for Kiwibuild - which is 1000 houses in our first 12 months from July 1, 5000 after that, 10,000 after that," he said.

"A day does not go by without developers, without councils, without iwi knocking on my door with proposals and plans to build Kiwibuild houses - not just in Auckland, but all around the country... People want to build houses because they're sick of the last nine years, when no affordable houses got built."

New National leader Simon Bridges last month did a U-turn from his predecessors in admitting there was a housing crisis, albeit "for those who don't have houses".

Ms Collins wouldn't call it a crisis, opting for "serious problem", but otherwise echoed her boss' words.

"If you need a house and you can't get one, it's a serious problem for you... If you take into account the global financial crisis, and you take into account all the mezzanine financing that just disappeared after that, and then you take into account the fact we're no longer losing 40 to 50,000 New Zealanders to Australia every year, clearly we need more houses."