Canadian Housing Starts - December 10, 2012

Canadian housing starts continued to moderate in November, falling from 204K units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) in October, to 196,125 (SAAR).  New home construction in BC urban centres also declined, falling to 22,300 (SAAR) in November from 26,700 units (SAAR) in October.  On a year-over-year basis, multiple unit starts in BC were 14 per cent lower in November while single family starts were 20 per cent lower. Overall,  BC housing starts were 15 per cent lower than in November 2011 but remain 5 per cent higher year-to-date compared with 2011.

Looking at census metropolitan areas (CMA) in BC, Vancouver CMA starts fell 27 per cent year-over-year in November. Both the single-detached and multiples sector fell over 20 per cent compared with November 2011. New home construction in the Abbotsford CMA was off 43 per cent compared to 2011 due to relatively slow activity in multiple starts. Housing starts in the Kelowna CMA rose 9 per cent year- over-year as a jump in multiple starts offset sagging single-detached construction. Housing starts in Victoria were 64 per cent higher than November 2011 as multiple unit starts more than doubled November 2011 levels. Victoria single starts were off 20 per cent year-over-year.

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