Local housing starts pick up in November: CMHC

Housing starts in the capital trended up in November, according to the latest numbers from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

At 6,162, the number of starts was up 736 from October, CMHC said Tuesday.

“Housing starts trended higher for all housing types in November compared to the previous month led by purpose-built rental apartment and single-detached home starts,” CMHC Ottawa market analyst Anne-Marie Shaker said in a statement. “A scale back in condominium starts due to a high level of unsold units, together with some pent-up demand for single-detached homes, boosted starts for this dwelling type so far this year."

The trend measurement is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR), meant to account for considerable swings in monthly estimates.

November’s SAAR of 8,169 was up from 4,798 in October. CMHC said there was an increase in all types of starts, but the biggest jump came in single detached homes. Single-detached starts came in at their highest level for the year-to-date compared to the same period since 2011.

Across the country, CMHC said the annual pace increased to 211,916 units in November compared with 197,712 units in October.

That compared with the 197,300 that had been expected by economists, according to Thomson Reuters.

The rate of urban starts increased by 7.7 per cent in November to 195,121, boosted by a gain in multi-unit starts which increased by 13.2 per cent to 137,898. Single-detached urban starts fell 3.6 per cent to 57,223 units.

Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 16,795 units.

The six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates for housing starts across the country was 208,401 units in November, up from 206,125 in October.

- with files from the Canadian Press