Canadian Housing Starts Trend Decreases in July

OTTAWA, Aug. 9, 2018 /CNW/ - The trend in housing starts was 219,988 units in July 2018, compared to 221,738 units in June 2018, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). This trend measure is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) of housing starts.

"The national trend in housing starts decreased in July, reflecting a decline in the SAAR of multi-unit dwellings in urban centres from the near-historical high registered in June," said Bob Dugan, CMHC's chief economist. "Despite decreasing in July, the trend remains well-above historical averages, reflecting elevated levels of multi-unit starts in most major markets that has more-than-offset declining single starts."

Monthly Highlights

Vancouver
Housing starts trended lower in July 2018 as fewer projects in both the single-detached and multi-family segments got underway. The densifying cities of Vancouver, Burnaby, and North Vancouver were focal points for new multi-family construction during the month. Despite the generally weak response of housing supply to changes in prices in Vancouver, particularly large increases in home prices and strong demand from a growing population in the Vancouver Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) have resulted in an elevated level of new home construction so far in 2018, equaling levels recorded in the first seven months of 2017.

Victoria
The trend for housing starts moved higher in July 2018, continuing strong construction activity in the first half of the year for the Victoria CMA. While the number of multi-family projects getting underway declined relative to the same month last year, single-detached starts expanded, particularly in the West Shore municipalities of Langford and Colwood. With strong demand for all types of housing in the region, builders have responded by starting 14% more units in 2018 compared with the same period last year.

Lethbridge
The housing starts trend in Lethbridge CMA declined slightly in July compared to the previous month. Actual housing starts were down 19% in July compared to the corresponding period in 2017, with both single-detached and multi-family homes contributing to the decline. Elevated inventories and an easing of demand continue to assert downward pressure on housing starts in the Lethbridge area.

Saskatoon
Total housing starts trended lower in July as fewer multi-family projects got underway in the month. Homebuilding activity during the first seven months of 2018 has been characterized by a mixed performance, with single-detached starts down by 31% and multi-family starts up by just under 1%, compared with the previous year. So far in 2018, modest economic growth has kept residential construction below the levels seen during the same period of 2017.

Toronto
The total housing starts trend in the Toronto CMA was virtually unchanged in July. The decline in the single-detached starts trend was matched by rising apartment starts. High house prices continued to shift buyers from purchasing low-rise units towards relatively more affordable condominium apartments. Consequently, condominium apartment starts were the highest for the month since 2005. The majority of condominium apartment starts took place in the City of Toronto (60%), with the remainder taking place in Mississauga (19%), Vaughan (11%), and Oakville (10%).

Oshawa
Total housing starts trended lower in the Oshawa CMA, as both single-detached and apartment unit construction declined. In fact, July saw the lowest number of single-detached starts for the month since 1992. While demographic and economic conditions remain favourable, the number of units under construction is the highest it has been in over 25 years, which slowed the pace of new projects.

Peterborough
The overall trend for total housing starts in the Peterborough CMA remained relatively unchanged into July, remaining close to the high levels witnessed over the last 19 months. This strength comes off the heels of a strong year for housing starts in 2017 and robust single-detached starts in the first seven months of 2018. Demand has been driven by the relative affordability of single-detached homes compared to other Ontario CMAs.

Québec CMA
In the Quebec region, year-to-date housing starts decreased by 10% compared to the same period in 2017. This decrease was due to the condominium and freehold (single-detached, semi-detached and row) housing segment. However, the rental housing segment continued to stand out. In fact, conventional rental or seniors' housing units saw an increase of 48% over the same period last year.

New Brunswick
The first seven months of 2018 has seen total housing starts increase by 8% compared to the same period last year. Construction of multi-family projects continues to drive this growth, with an increase of 13% compared to 3% in single-family housing starts. The increase in multi-family construction projects are a response to a 7-year low in New Brunswick's apartment vacancy rates.

CMHC uses the trend measure as a complement to the monthly SAAR of housing starts to account for considerable swings in monthly estimates and obtain a more complete picture of Canada's housing market. In some situations analyzing only SAAR data can be misleading, as they are largely driven by the multi-unit segment of the market which can vary significantly from one month to the next.

The standalone monthly SAAR of housing starts for all areas in Canada was 206,314 units in July, down from 246,200 units in June. The SAAR of urban starts decreased by 16.2% in July to 190,093 units. Multiple urban starts decreased by 20.3% to 136,231 units in July while single-detached urban starts decreased by 3.6% to 53,862 units.

Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 16,221 units.

Preliminary Housing Starts data are also available in English and French through our website and through CMHC's Housing Market Information Portal. Our analysts are also available to provide further insight into their respective markets.

As Canada's authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers objective housing research and information to Canadian governments, consumers and the housing industry.

For more information, follow us on Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.

 


Preliminary Housing Start Data in Centres 10,000 Population and Over



Single-Detached

All Others

Total





July 2017

July 2018

%

July 2017

July 2018

%

July 2017

July 2018

%

Provinces (10,000+)










N.-L.


97

68

-30

64

28

-56

161

96

-40

P.E.I.   


31

31

-

47

5

-89

78

36

-54

N.S.   


145

125

-14

224

358

60

369

483

31

N.B.   


119

113

-5

78

111

42

197

224

14

Atlantic


392

337

-14

413

502

22

805

839

4

Qc


694

597

-14

2,709

2,199

-19

3,403

2,796

-18

Ont.   


2,644

2,048

-23

4,510

3,901

-14

7,154

5,949

-17

Man.   


266

223

-16

134

500

273

400

723

81

Sask.   


219

156

-29

206

75

-64

425

231

-46

Alta.   


1,291

1,092

-15

1,567

1,451

-7

2,858

2,543

-11

Prairies


1,776

1,471

-17

1,907

2,026

6

3,683

3,497

-5

B.C.   


1,000

888

-11

2,929

2,772

-5

3,929

3,660

-7

Canada (10,000+)

6,506

5,341

-18

12,468

11,400

-9

18,974

16,741

-12

Metropolitan Areas










Abbotsford-Mission

24

42

75

157

111

-29

181

153

-15

Barrie


101

169

67

1

0

-100

102

169

66

Belleville


39

47

21

36

9

-75

75

56

-25

Brantford


31

37

19

63

21

-67

94

58

-38

Calgary


430

301

-30

716

709

-1

1,146

1,010

-12

Edmonton


498

563

13

716

518

-28

1,214

1,081

-11

Greater Sudbury

28

22

-21

2

8

300

30

30

-

Guelph


18

10

-44

8

81

##

26

91

250

Halifax


83

74

-11

194

330

70

277

404

46

Hamilton


52

76

46

204

226

11

256

302

18

Kelowna


87

46

-47

41

112

173

128

158

23

Kingston


42

37

-12

18

26

44

60

63

5

Kitchener-Cambridge-Waterloo

69

49

-29

299

62

-79

368

111

-70

Lethbridge


45

43

-4

18

8

-56

63

51

-19

London


197

156

-21

38

92

142

235

248

6

Moncton


37

44

19

17

20

18

54

64

19

Montréal


275

253

-8

1,553

1,287

-17

1,828

1,540

-16

Oshawa


100

51

-49

9

68

##

109

119

9

Ottawa-Gatineau

276

339

23

1,015

514

-49

1,291

853

-34


Gatineau


62

38

-39

427

247

-42

489

285

-42


Ottawa


214

301

41

588

267

-55

802

568

-29

Peterborough


32

64

100

15

0

-100

47

64

36

Québec


118

70

-41

364

266

-27

482

336

-30

Regina


84

29

-65

105

38

-64

189

67

-65

Saguenay


16

32

100

10

16

60

26

48

85

St. Catharines-Niagara

155

53

-66

94

12

-87

249

65

-74

Saint John


26

19

-27

1

52

##

27

71

163

St. John's


79

46

-42

60

24

-60

139

70

-50

Saskatoon


111

111

-

89

27

-70

200

138

-31

Sherbrooke


12

19

58

36

36

-

48

55

15

Thunder Bay


16

28

75

2

0

-100

18

28

56

Toronto


928

491

-47

2,864

2,872

0

3,792

3,363

-11

Trois-Rivières

27

13

-52

34

44

29

61

57

-7

Vancouver


492

411

-16

1,906

1,746

-8

2,398

2,157

-10

Victoria


84

97

15

611

320

-48

695

417

-40

Windsor


81

59

-27

41

24

-41

122

83

-32

Winnipeg


207

173

-16

83

474

471

290

647

123

Total


4,900

4,074

-17

11,420

10,153

-11

16,320

14,227

-13



















Data for 2017 based on 2016 Census Definitions.









Data for 2018 based on 2016 Census Definitions.









Source:  Market Analysis Centre, CMHC









## not calculable / extreme value






















 


Preliminary Housing Start Data - Seasonally Adjusted at Annual Rates (SAAR)



Single-Detached

All Others

Total







June 2018

July 2018

%

June 2018

July 2018

%

June 2018

July 2018

%


Provinces (10,000+)











N.L.


643

600

-7

119

286

140

762

886

16


P.E.I.   


266

244

-8

504

60

-88

770

304

-61


N.S.   


1,501

1,116

-26

3,904

4,233

8

5,405

5,349

-1


N.B.   


809

787

-3

1,879

1,222

-35

2,688

2,009

-25


Qc  


6,616

6,081

-8

42,358

27,771

-34

48,974

33,852

-31


Ont.   


21,394

20,577

-4

79,370

45,165

-43

100,764

65,742

-35


Man.   


2,308

2,229

-3

3,384

6,000

77

5,692

8,229

45


Sask.   


1,280

1,458

14

1,224

900

-26

2,504

2,358

-6


Alta.   


11,288

11,397

1

13,548

17,409

28

24,836

28,806

16


B.C.   


9,765

9,373

-4

24,553

33,185

35

34,318

42,558

24


Canada (10,000+)

55,870

53,862

-4

170,843

136,231

-20

226,713

190,093

-16


Canada (All Areas)

68,734

66,382

-3

177,463

139,931

-21

246,200

206,314

-16


Metropolitan Areas

Abbotsford-Mission

357

424

19

192

1,332

##

549

1,756

220


Barrie


242

1,062

339

3,048

0

-100

3,290

1,062

-68


Belleville


458

409

-11

72

108

50

530

517

-2


Brantford


764

502

-34

48

252

425

812

754

-7


Calgary


3,827

3,380

-12

8,484

8,508

0

12,311

11,888

-3


Edmonton


5,241

5,933

13

4,644

6,216

34

9,885

12,149

23


Greater Sudbury

167

124

-26

132

96

-27

299

220

-26


Guelph


181

95

-48

936

972

4

1,117

1,067

-4


Halifax


909

667

-27

3,372

3,960

17

4,281

4,627

8


Hamilton


465

671

44

5,976

2,712

-55

6,441

3,383

-47


Kelowna


1,107

585

-47

2,520

1,344

-47

3,627

1,929

-47


Kingston


347

318

-8

2,160

312

-86

2,507

630

-75


Kitchener-Cambridge-Waterloo

824

595

-28

2,436

744

-69

3,260

1,339

-59


Lethbridge


393

451

15

156

96

-38

549

547

0


London


1,027

1,596

55

5,760

1,104

-81

6,787

2,700

-60


Moncton


236

277

17

696

240

-66

932

517

-45


Montréal


2,800

2,592

-7

29,553

15,475

-48

32,353

18,067

-44


Oshawa


1,448

474

-67

1,548

816

-47

2,996

1,290

-57


Ottawa-Gatineau

2,966

3,365

13

9,744

6,168

-37

12,710

9,533

-25



Gatineau


279

340

22

2,448

2,964

21

2,727

3,304

21



Ottawa


2,687

3,025

13

7,296

3,204

-56

9,983

6,229

-38


Peterborough

364

482

32

60

0

-100

424

482

14


Québec


790

819

4

9,744

3,192

-67

10,534

4,011

-62


Regina


320

302

-6

492

456

-7

812

758

-7


Saguenay


251

263

5

264

192

-27

515

455

-12


St. Catharines-Niagara

614

434

-29

1,044

144

-86

1,658

578

-65


Saint John


204

150

-26

0

624

##

204

774

279


St. John's


528

439

-17

84

288

243

612

727

19


Saskatoon


816

952

17

516

324

-37

1,332

1,276

-4


Sherbrooke


263

262

0

1,368

432

-68

1,631

694

-57


Thunder Bay

118

163

38

96

0

-100

214

163

-24


Toronto


6,231

5,444

-13

49,392

34,464

-30

55,623

39,908

-28


Trois-Rivières

159

163

3

504

528

5

663

691

4


Vancouver


4,462

4,282

-4

12,540

20,952

67

17,002

25,234

48


Victoria


958

1,039

8

5,016

3,840

-23

5,974

4,879

-18


Windsor


537

560

4

276

288

4

813

848

4


Winnipeg


1,767

1,769

0

2,868

5,688

98

4,635

7,457

61




















Data based on 2016 Census Definitions.









Source:  Market Analysis Centre, CMHC









## not calculable / extreme value
































 

SOURCE Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

For further information: Audrey-Anne Coulombe, Media Relations, CMHC, 613-748-2573, acoulomb@cmhc-schl.gc.ca

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