building

Housing starts trend increases in September

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Housing starts in Canada have trended upwards in September, according to CMHC. The trend measure of housing starts was 199,503 units this past month compared to 196,465 in August. The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) of housing starts.

“Housing starts were on an upward trend in September, as residential construction increased across the country with the exception of Ontario, where the multiples segment softened to levels that are more consistent with household formation,” said Bob Dugan, CMHC Chief Economist. “Quebec saw the largest gain in housing starts due to the development of new rental apartments intended for seniors. That said, Quebec’s growing apartment stock emphasizes the importance of inventory management.”

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 the state 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 for all areas in Canada was 220,617 units in September, up from 184,201 units in August. The SAAR of urban starts increased by 19.7 per cent in September to 201,848 units. Multiple urban starts increased by 22.3 per cent to 137,803 units in September and single-detached urban starts increased by 14.5 per cent to 64,045 units.

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