OTTAWA, June 8, 2016 — The trend measure of housing starts in Canada was 191,000 units in May compared to 194,950 in April, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) of housing starts.
“Housing starts slowed in May, and are now on pace to reach 191,000 units in Canada — falling within the upper range of our housing market outlook forecast for the year,” said Bob Dugan, CMHC Chief Economist. “The decline we see in the trend is led by fewer multiple starts in urban areas, particularly in larger centres like Toronto.”
CMHC uses the trend measure as a complement to the monthly SAAR of housing starts to account for considerable swings in monthly estimates and obtain a more complete picture of the state of Canada’s housing market. In some situations analyzing only SAAR data can be misleading, as they are largely driven by the multi-unit segment of the market which can vary significantly from one month to the next.
The standalone monthly SAAR for all areas in Canada was 188,570 units in May, down from 191,388 units in April. The SAAR of urban starts decreased by 2.5 per cent in May to 170,432 units. Multiple urban starts decreased by 5.7 per cent to 110,834 units in May and the single-detached urban starts increased by 4.2 per cent to 59,598 units.
In May, the seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts decreased in British Columbia and the Prairies, but increased in Ontario, Atlantic Canada, and Québec.
Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 18,138 units.
Preliminary Housing Starts data is also available in English and French at the following link: Preliminary Housing Starts Tables
As Canada’s authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers objective housing research and information to Canadian governments, consumers and the housing industry.
Information on This Release:
CMHC Media Relations
This release is also available at www.cmhc.ca.
Additional data is available upon request.
|April 2016||May 2016|
|Trend1, all areas||194,950||191,000|
|SAAR, all areas||191,388||188,570|
|SAAR, rural areas2||16,675||18,138|
|SAAR, urban centres3|
|Atlantic, urban centres||4,002||8,118|
|Quebec, urban centres||27,619||33,769|
|Ontario, urban centres||62,403||64,918|
|Prairies, urban centres||35,081||28,315|
|British Columbia, urban centres||45,608||35,312|
|Canada||May 2015||May 2016|
|Actual, all areas||18,690||17,678|
|Actual, rural areas||1,561||1,702|
|Actual, urban centres|
|May — Single-detached||5,611||5,859|
|May — Multiples||11,518||10,117|
|May — Total||17,129||15,976|
|January to May — Single-detached||19,693||20,316|
|January to May — Multiples||45,216||45,743|
|January to May — Total||64,909||66,059|
1 The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR). By removing seasonal ups and downs, seasonal adjustment allows for comparison of adjacent months and quarters. The monthly and quarterly SAAR and trend figures indicate the annual level of starts that would be obtained if the same pace of monthly or quarterly construction activity was maintained for 12 months. This facilitates comparison of the current pace of activity to annual forecasts as well as to historical annual levels.
2 CMHC estimates the level of starts in centres with a population of less than 10,000 for each of the three months of the quarter, at the beginning of each quarter. During the last month of the quarter, CMHC conducts the survey in these centres and revises the estimate.
3 Urban centres with a population of 10,000 and over.
Detailed data available upon request