Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

October 11, 2011 08:15 ET

Single-Detached Starts Post Growth in September

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 11, 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 627 units in September. Representing the second straight month of strong activity, construction during September closed the third quarter on a positive note and led to an improvement in the year-to-date pace of starts, which is nevertheless still trailing last year by almost 11 per cent.

"Continued labour market resilience and rock bottom financing rates have led to renewed demand at builders' sales offices for new single-detached homes. Single starts have in this way posted the first quarterly advance for this segment in 2011," said Sandra Pérez Torres, Senior Market Analyst at CMHC.

Nevertheless, single-detached home starts still accounted for just under a third of total residential construction activity for the month, reflective of the continued shift in household preference for more affordable housing choices. "Higher density construction continued to gain momentum in September, pointing to an active race to year-end. Condominium apartment starts came in close to an annual high for the second straight month as upbeat building intentions begin to materialize," concluded Pérez Torres.

To view the image, "Ottawa Housing Starts," please visit the following link:

To view the image, "Housing Starts by Area, September 2010," please visit the following link:

For the second month in a row, Nepean -outside of the Greenbelt- and Cumberland attracted over half of all residential housing starts in Ottawa, exceeding other regions across most housing segments and accounting for almost all new condominium apartment units. In fact, nearly all housing starts in September took place outside of the Greelbelt, with Nepean and the eastern suburbs of Gloucester and Cumberland outperforming. Kanata, with a mix of singles and rows, as well as Goulbourn, mostly with apartments, remained active contributors to starts growth. The most significant drag on construction this past month came mostly from the lack of apartment building in central Ottawa.

To view the image, "Housing Starts by Area 2010 and 2011 YTD," please visit the following link:

Construction outside of the Greenbelt has picked up speed and for the first time this year it is outperforming the inner areas in terms of contributions to the year-to-date starts pace. Another slow month for apartment construction dragged new home market activity within the Old City of Ottawa further behind last year's pace. In contrast, Nepean -outside of the Greenbelt- and Cumberland now stand alone as areas surpassing last year's construction pace. Worthy of note, Nepean continued to experience buyant demand for most housing types and is well set to achieve a new record in 2011, while closing in to rival the Old City of Ottawa's dominance in the number of new apartment starts.

Across the other Ottawa areas, activity in the western suburbs of Kanata and Goulbourn, as well as in the outlying areas, remained the slowest as these regions have so far been affected the most by the moderation in single-detached home starts.

Ottawa Housing Starts
Sep-10 Sep-11 % Change 2010 (YTD) 2011 (YTD) % Change
Single-Detached 117 204 74.4 % 1,623 1,449 -10.7 %
Multi-Family 346 423 22.3 % 2,939 2,627 -10.6 %
Semi-Detached 24 34 41.7 % 246 271 10.2 %
Row House 147 170 15.6 % 1,488 1,354 -9.0 %
Apartment 175 219 25.1 % 1,205 1,002 -16.8 %
Total 463 627 35.4 % 4,562 4,076 -10.7 %

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 or call 1-800-668-2642.

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Contact Information

  • Ottawa (in English or French):
    Sandra Perez-Torres
    Senior Market Analyst

    Ted Tsiakopoulos
    Regional Economist

    Charles Sauriol
    Senior Media Relations Officer
    (613) 748-2799