Canadian housing starts increased 1 per cent in August to 223,232 units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR). The six-month trend in Canadian housing starts was also higher at 219,447 units SAAR.
New home construction in BC fell 21 per cent on a monthly basis to a still robust 35,773 units SAAR but were up 4 per cent on a year-over-year basis. Single detached starts fell 7 per cent month-over-month and were 3 per cent lower year-over-year. Multiple unit starts declined 26 per cent on a monthly basis but were up 7 per cent year-over-year.
Looking at census metropolitan areas (CMA) in BC:
Total starts in the Vancouver CMA fell 13 per cent year-over-year in August. Both single and multiple unit starts declined, falling by 2 and 16 per cent respectively on a year-over-year basis.
In the Victoria CMA market, housing starts followed up a surge in new units in July with a further 22 per cent year-over-year increase in August. Multiple unit starts were once again the main source of growth, rising 46 per cent year-over-year.
- New home construction in the Kelowna CMA more than doubled compared to August 2016 due to a number of multiple unit projects breaking ground. Many of those units are new rental units, which year to date have totaled 1,366 starts. That is the highest 8 month total for construction of rental units in Kelowna's history.
- Housing starts in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA continued a torrid pace of growth in August, rising 93 per cent year-over-year, boosted by strong growth in both single and multiple unit starts.