Ottawa housing starts stable in December: CMHC

Housing starts trended up just slightly in Ottawa in December, according to numbers released Friday by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

There were 6,246 housing starts last month, an increase of 36 from November.

“Ottawa housing starts remained stable in December, particularly supported by the construction of townhouses,” CMHC senior market analyst Sandra Perez Torres said in a statement. She said that while overall starts were down in 2014, single-detached construction was “almost on par” with 2013 and the comeback for row construction that started in the middle of 2013 is continuing.

“Recovering job growth in recent months also stimulated demand for new homes in multiple housing, particularly those that provide bigger living spaces, such as townhomes,” said Ms. Perez Torres.

Kanata had the most starts in December with 26 per cent, with Nepean – both inside and outside the Greenbelt – coming in second, followed by Gloucester and Cumberland, which were tied for third.

Across the country, housing starts slowed in December.

CMHC says the equivalent of 180,560 units were started on a seasonally adjusted basis last month, down from 193,199 in November.

CMHC says the number of multiple-unit starts in urban areas fell to 103,054 units in December from 110,766 in November.

There was also a decline in urban single-family house construction, which fell to 59,861 units from 62,861.

On a regional basis, there were small increases in Ontario and B.C. urban starts and relatively large declines in other parts of the country.

CMHC said the six-month trend in December was 192,047 units, down from 194,807 in November.

In a separate report, Statistics Canada reported Friday that the value of building permits dropped by 13.8 per cent from October to November, when they had a total value of nearly $6.59 billion.

-with files from the Canadian Press