TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Feb. 10, 2014) - Housing starts in the Ontario region were trending at 60,850 units in January, compared to 61,071 units in December, 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.
"Residential construction activity bounced back closer to trend levels in January from lower levels in December. Inclement weather was likely a factor during the previous month as Toronto and some surrounding areas, hit most by snowy weather, experienced a bigger bounce back in January. Strong demand for resale homes, a backlog of apartment units awaiting construction in combination with a gradual improvement in the job market are factors supportive of housing construction in early 2014," said Ted Tsiakopoulos, CMHC's Ontario Regional Economist.
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 SAAR of total housing starts was 58,756 units in January, up from 53,776 units in December. With the exception of semi detached starts, all other dwelling types posted increases in January. Ontario raw urban starts were 42 per cent above levels this time 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.
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 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.
Additional data is available upon request.
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A table and a graph are available at the following address: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/926519a.pdf