Housing Starts Drop

The trend in housing starts was 260,567 units in December, down from 267,606 units in November, says the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). However, actual urban housing starts were 21 per cent higher in 2021, adding much needed supply, says Bob Dugan, chief economist for CMHC. The increase was driven by higher single-detached (28 per cent) and multi-family (19 per cent) starts and was mainly due to recovery following COVID-19 shutdown measures in 2020. Additionally, among Vancouver, BC; Toronto, ON; and Montreal, QC; Vancouver was the only market to post growth in total seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) starts in December, due to higher single-detached and multi-family starts. The standalone monthly SAAR of housing starts for all areas in Canada was 236,106 units in December, a decrease of 22 per cent from 303,813 units the previous month.