Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation



Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

February 10, 2014 08:15 ET

January 2014 Housing Starts in Ottawa

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Feb. 10, 2014) - Housing starts in the Ottawa Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) were trending at 6,039 units in January compared to 7,341 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.

"The year began with housing starts activity slowing down from December levels across all market segments. The strongest adjustment in starts levels was seen in apartment construction which saw just 25 units started outside the greenbelt. Apartment construction is expected to wind down from previous years` highs as inventories are absorbed by the market," 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 3,482 units in January down from 4,745 units in December.

Gloucester (outside the greenbelt) seized one third of all starts on the back of strong row construction. The area captured 62 per cent of all rows. Nepean (outside the greenbelt) seized another 28.5 per cent of CMA activity, while Kanata came in third place with 13 per cent. Activity by area at the start of the year followed a similar trend to that of a previous month. The three areas are becoming the most prominent ones in low-rise construction.

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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(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.

Additional data is available upon request.

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Tables and a graph are available at the following address: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/926512a.pdf

Contact Information

  • Sandra Perez-Torres
    Senior Market Analyst
    613-552-0798
    sperezto@cmhc.ca

    National Media Contact:
    Beth Bailey
    Consultant, Communications and Marketing
    (416) 218-3355
    bbailey@cmhc.ca