Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

September 09, 2014 08:15 ET

August 2014 Housing Starts in Ottawa

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Sept. 9, 2014) - Housing starts in Ottawa Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) were trending at 6,253 units in August compared to 5,424 units in July according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR)(1) of housing starts.

"Housing starts activity accelerated further this month in seasonally adjusted terms driven by a rise in low-rise construction. Year-to-date, the share of low-rise starts has risen to 68 per cent compared to 54 per cent in 2013. Demand for such dwellings is supported by gains in full-time employment for the 45-64 year-old age group (the move-up buyers)," said Sandra Perez Torres, Senior Market Analyst for Eastern and Northern Ontario.

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 the housing market. In some situations, analysing only SAAR data can be misleading in some markets, as they are largely driven by the multiples segment of the markets, which can be quite variable from one month to the next. The multiples segment includes apartments, rows and semi-detached homes.

In Ottawa, the standalone monthly SAAR was 7,189 units in August up from 4,494 units in July.

Nepean outside the greenbelt (OTG) maintained its lead in construction activity this month with 30 per cent of total starts driven by its large share of row units. Kanata came in at a distant second place with 17 per cent of housing starts; however, it captured almost 40 per cent share of single-detached construction. Year-to-date, the suburban area of Nepean has a clear lead in starts activity capturing over a quarter of total starts activity, surpassing its five-year average share, and rebalancing from lower activity last year.

Preliminary Housing Starts data is also available in English and French at the following link:
Preliminary Housing Starts Tables

As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 65 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally sustainable and affordable housing solutions. CMHC also provides reliable, impartial and up-to-date housing market reports, analysis and knowledge to support and assist consumers and the housing industry in making informed decisions.

(1) All starts figures in this release, other than actual starts and the trend estimate, are seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) - that is, monthly figures adjusted to remove normal seasonal variation and multiplied by 12 to reflect annual levels. By removing seasonal ups and downs, seasonal adjustment allows for a comparison from one season to the next and from one month to the next. Reporting monthly figures at annual rates indicates the annual level of starts that would be obtained if the monthly pace was maintained for 12 months. This facilitates comparison of the current pace of activity to annual forecasts as well as to historical annual levels.

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Additional data is available upon request.

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Tables and a graph are available at the following address:

Contact Information

  • Market Analysis Contact:
    Sandra Perez-Torres, Senior Market Analyst

    Media Contact:
    Beth Bailey, Consultant, Communications and Marketing
    Cell: 416-988-4615