Ottawa-Gatineau’s annual pace of housing starts jumps 39% in August: CMHC

Housing starts stock image

The annual pace of housing starts in the National Capital Region bounced back last month, rising 39 per cent after falling in July, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says.

The national housing agency says the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts in Ottawa-Gatineau came in at 14,754 units in August, compared with 10,594 the previous month.

The annual pace of starts was up on both sides of the Ottawa River in August. Ottawa’s rate ticked up 17 per cent month-over-month to 10,816, while Gatineau saw its pace of starts nearly triple to 3,938 compared with the previous month.

OBJ360 (Sponsored)

Single-detached starts made the biggest gain, rising 93 per cent to 9,348. Meanwhile, the pace of multi-unit starts such as apartments and condos jumped 32 per cent to 12,348.

Developers started work on 1,245 new housing units in Ottawa-Gatineau last month, down eight per cent year-over-year but an increase from the 916 starts recorded in July.

Single-detached starts fell 26 per cent compared with the previous year to 216, but were up from the 156 starts recorded in July. Multi-unit starts declined three per cent year-over-year to 1,029 but rose significantly from the previous month’s total of 779.

The bump in starts comes as the federal government announced last week it is waiving the GST on new rental housing construction in a bid to kickstart construction and address a growing shortage of apartments across the country. 

Local developers applauded the move, with some saying it could lower the cost of building new rental housing by as much as $20,000 per unit if the province also follows through on its pledge to eliminate its portion of the HST on new construction.

Nationally, CMHC says the annual pace of housing starts in Canada edged down one per cent in August compared with July.

The national housing agency says the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts in August came in at 252,787 units compared with 255,232 in July.

The decrease came as the rate of urban housing starts fell one per cent to 233,075 units in August.

The pace of multi-unit urban starts decreased one per cent to 191,250, while the rate of single-detached urban starts rose two per cent to 41,825.

The annual rate of rural starts was estimated at 19,712.

The six-month moving average of the overall monthly seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts was 244,507 units in August, up 0.8 per cent from 242,552 in July.

– With additional reporting from the Canadian Press

Get our email updates

Get up-to-date news about the companies, people and issues that impact businesses in Ottawa and beyond.

By signing up you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. You may unsubscribe at any time.