Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

September 09, 2011 08:15 ET

Healthy Low-Density Housing Starts in August

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 9, 2011) - According to the latest preliminary data released by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), housing starts in the Ottawa Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) totalled 650 units in August, the strongest showing so far this year. Nevertheless, the year-to-date pace of starts is still down almost 16 per cent compared to the same period a year ago.

"Although all low-density (single-detached, semi-detached and townhomes) housing was strong in August, semis and rows are challenging the traditional market dominance of single-family homes that has prevailed for most of the past two decades. The combination of demographic trends and increasing housing prices is placing affordability as one of the top considerations among homebuyers," said Sandra Pérez Torres, Senior Market Analyst at CMHC.

For its part the new condominium apartment segment posted its second-best result of the year but, nevertheless, fell short by a wide margin of the near record high number of starts last August. "Condominium apartment demand and building intentions remain healthy, and this likely heralds another strong finish of the year," concluded Pérez Torres.

To view the "Ottawa Housing Starts" graphic associated with this press release, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/ohs1.jpg.jpg.

Over half of all residential construction in Ottawa took place in Nepean -outside of the Greenbelt- and in Cumberland, both adding a similar mix of single-detached homes and townhomes. Nepean, in addition, saw builders braking ground for 116 new condominium apartment units.

The trend of activity for single family homes out farther from the city core continued this month. Seven out of ten townhomes were started in Nepean, Kanata and Cumberland, while most semi-detached starts were concentrated in Nepean and in the Old City of Ottawa.

To view the "Housing Starts by Area August 2010 and August 2011" graphic associated with this press release, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/ohs2.jpg.

A relative lower number of apartment construction has finally dragged Ottawa's city core to fall behind last year's pace, which means that now all neighbourhoods are showing softer activity compared to a year ago. Among all areas, construction activity remained the slowest in Kanata, Goulbourn and the outlying areas of West Carleton, Clarence-Rockland and Russell. On the other hand, the major areas where activity has so far moderated the least were Nepean and Cumberland, which were dragged mainly by townhome construction.

To view the "Housing Starts by Area 2010 and 2011 YTD" graphic associated with this press release, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/ohs3.jpg.

To view the "Ottawa Housing Starts" table associated with this press release, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/cmhc_ott_0909_table.jpg

As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on 65 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of high quality, environmentally sustainable and affordable homes. 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.

For more information, visit www.cmhc.ca or call 1-800-668-2642.

Ce document est aussi disponible en français.

Contact Information

  • Ottawa (in English or French):
    Sandra Perez-Torres
    Senior Market Analyst
    613-748-5120
    sperezto@cmhc.ca

    Ontario:
    Ted Tsiakopoulos
    Regional Economist
    416-218-3407
    ttsiakop@cmhc.ca

    Canada:
    Charles Sauriol
    Senior Media Relations Officer
    (613) 748-2799
    csauriol@cmhc.ca