Construction industry significantly contributes to New Zealand’s economic development. However, the delivery of construction projects is usually plagued by cost overruns, which turn potentially successful projects into money-losing ventures, resulting in various other unexpected negative impacts. The objectives of the study were to identify, classify, and assess the impacts of the factors affecting project cost in New Zealand. Recognising the lack of a systematic approach for assessing the influencing factors associated with project cost, this study identified 30 influencing factors from various sources and quantified their relative impacts. The research data were gathered through a questionnaire survey circulated across New Zealand construction industry. A total of 283 responses were received, with a 37% response rate. A model was developed for testing the relationship between project cost and the influential factors. The proposed research model was examined with structural equation modelling (SEM). According to the results of the analysis, market and industry conditions factor has the most significant effect on project cost, while regulatory regime is the second-most significant influencing factor, followed by key stakeholders’ perspectives. The findings can improve project cost performance through the identification and evaluation of the cost-influencing factors. The results of such analysis enable industry professionals to better understand cost-related risks in the complex environment.