Housing starts decline to end the year

(© Can Stock Photo / Babar760)

Housing starts in Canada fell by five percent in December from the previous month.

The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation released its monthly data on January 17, showing the seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban single detached housing starts fell 11 percent and the multi-unit urban starts dropped four percent.

According to a statement from CMHC, rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 20,917 units.

Housing starts in the Toronto Census Metropolitan Area were up 7.6 percent, driven entirely by multi-unit homes like condos, apartments, and row houses.

“The 2022 year ended with a slight decline for both the monthly SAAR of housing starts and the trend at the national level in December; however, Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver all posted increases in total SAAR housing starts, with Toronto posting a significant increase of 72% in December,”¬†said Bob Dugan, CMHC’s Chief Economist. “The rate of new construction continued at an elevated pace in 2022 overall, ending the year with actual total urban starts at 240,590 units (-1%) in Canada, similar to levels observed in 2021 (244,141 units). While these additional units will provide much needed supply on the market, demand for housing in the country will continue to grow. We need to find innovative ways to deliver more housing supply and keep building at a higher pace in the coming years in order to improve affordability.”