Canadian housing starts rose 28 per cent on a monthly basis in June to 248,000 units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR). The six-month trend in Canadian housing starts was steady at about 222,000 units SAAR.
In BC, total housing starts declined 16 per cent on a monthly basis to 34,300 units SAAR and were down 10 per cent year-over-year. On a monthly basis, starts of multiple units were down 21 per cent to an annual rate of 24,563 units. Multiple unit and single detached starts were both down10 per cent compared to June of last year.
Looking at census metropolitan areas (CMA) in BC:
- Total starts in the Vancouver CMA were down 28 per cent year-over-year due to a 34 per cent decline in multiple unit starts and were down 36 per cent from May 2018. In the first six months of the year, housing starts in the Vancouver CMA were essentially flat compared to the first six months of 2017.
- In the Victoria CMA, housing starts nearly doubled year-over-year and were up 85 per cent on a monthly basis to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of nearly 6,000 units. New home construction is up 45 per cent year-over-year in the first six months of the year. Much of that new construction is the result of a doubling of rental starts compared to last year.
- In the Kelowna CMA, new home construction increased 43 per cent year-over-year as a result of continued growth in multiple unit starts. However, on a monthly basis, total starts were down 6 per cent from May to a rate of 3,590 units SAAR.
- Housing starts in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA fell 5 per cent from May to 515 units SAAR due to a dip in multiple unit starts. Year-over-year, total housing starts fell 82 per cent as only 47 total units including only 16 multiple units were started in June.
Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.