Canadian housing starts fell to 216980 units in December: CMHC

Canadian housing starts fell to 216980 units in December: CMHC

Canadian housing starts fell to 216980 units in December: CMHC

There were 3,892 housing starts in Greater Victoria - the highest number in four decades.

Only 896 of last year's housing starts were for single-family detached homes.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says the annual pace of housing starts slowed in December.

Multiple urban starts, typically condos, fell 22 percent in December while single-detached urban starts rose 4.7 percent, the report showed.

Total 2017 starts were also lower in Vancouver, mostly due to constraints in construction labor and equipment, the federal agency said.

Breaking it down by municipalities, the highest number of starts, 979, were recorded in the City of Victoria proper.

Canadian housing starts fell to 216980 units in December: CMHC

CMHC said the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts for December 2017 came in at 216,980 units, down from 251,675 units in November.

"Tighter rent controls in Ontario will cool the multiples construction cycle as last year's starts reflected decisions made before the introduction of rules that diminished the attractiveness of investing in condo projects", Holt said. The six-month moving average for December was 226,777 compared with 226,178 in November.

The housing market has been identified as a key risk to the economy and has been scrutinized by economists and policy-makers.

RBC assistant chief economist Paul Ferley said recent tightening of mortgage lending, further official interest rate increases in both Canada and the USA and current poor affordability in a number of key markets will contribute to housing starts continuing to trend lower.

"Our forecast assumes that starts will drop to 195,000 this year and 185,000 in 2019".

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