Canadian housing starts rose modestly in September as builders broke ground on more multiple-unit dwellings, typically condominiums, data showed on Wednesday.
The report from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp showed housing starts climbed to a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 197,343 units last month from an upwardly revised 196,283 units in August.
The homebuilding sector has shown resilience this year, bouncing back from weakness at the beginning of 2014 that was caused by severe winter weather, and the housing market generally has remained strong, defying expectations for a correction or crash.
Housing Starts, Canada
September’s rise in starts lifted the six-month moving average to 197,747 from 191,095, reflecting stronger activity since April, which has been largely concentrated in multiple unit homes.
The six-month trend is running above the level consistent with demographic fundamentals, which is around 185,000,
Multiple unit starts, most often condominiums, rose 2.4 per cent in September, offsetting a 2.9 per cent decline in single-detached homes. Starts in rural areas rose 1.4 per cent.
The elevated level of condos under construction supports the view that ground-breaking on condos should trend lower over the coming months, CMHC chief economist Bob Dugan said.
Activity was concentrated in the provinces of Ontario and Quebec, where starts rose 5.2 per cent and 16.6 per cent, respectively.