November 2014 Housing Starts in Canada

The trend measure of housing starts in Canada was 195,792 units in November compared to 195,796 in October, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR)1 of housing starts.

“The trend essentially held steady for a third consecutive month in November,” said Bob Dugan, CMHC’s Chief Economist. “This is in line with our expectations for 2014, of a stable national picture with new home building concentrated in multiple starts, particularly in Quebec, British Columbia and Ontario.”

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 was 195,620 units in November, up from 183,659 in October. The SAAR of urban starts increased to 176,343 in November, from 164,784 in October. The increase was concentrated in multiple urban starts, which reached 112,583 in November, while single-detached urban starts decreased to 63,760 units.

Growth in urban housing starts was led by British Columbia and followed by Quebec, Ontario and Atlantic Canada, while urban housing starts decreased in the Prairies. Rural starts2 were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 19,277 units.

Preliminary Housing Starts data is also available in English and French at the following link: Preliminary Housing Starts Tables 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 advice to Canadian governments, consumers and the housing industry.

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