Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

January 09, 2014 08:15 ET

December 2013 Housing Starts in Ottawa

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Jan. 9, 2014) - Housing starts in Ottawa Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) were trending at 7,327 units in December compared to 7,797 units in November 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 moderated slightly in December in continuation of the slowing trend in activity which began earlier in the year. Apartment construction, while tapering off over the last quarter, ended the year with levels almost on par from the previous year," 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 4,704 units in December down from 4,711 units in November.

Gloucester (outside the greenbelt) captured almost one third of activity in December buoyed by its large share in row starts. Nepean (outside the greenbelt) seized another 16 per cent of CMA activity, while peripheral(2) areas came in third position with 10 per cent. The year ended with housing starts activity still being highest in the city core with over one-third of total construction due to the continued strength of apartment starts. Kanata captured 17 per cent of Ottawa's construction this year with 60 per cent of all low-rise starts. Nepean (outside the greenbelt) and Gloucester (outside the greenbelt) had almost equal shares around the 14 per cent mark.

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.

(2) West Carleton, Clarence-Rockland and Russell.

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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

  • Sandra Perez-Torres
    Senior Market Analyst

    National Media Contact:
    Beth Bailey
    Consultant, Communications and Marketing
    (416) 218-3355