The trend in housing starts was 264,426 units in July, up from 257,862 units in June, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). This trend measure is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) of housing starts.
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 clearer picture of upcoming new housing supply. In some situations, analyzing only SAAR data can be misleading, as the multi-unit segment largely drives the market and can vary significantly from one month to the next.
“The monthly SAAR and trend were higher in July compared to June nationally, as historically elevated levels of housing starts activity continue in Canada, which have been well above 200,000 units since 2020,” said Aled Ab Iorwerth, CMHC’s Deputy Chief Economist. “Monthly SAAR housing starts in Canada’s urban areas declined in July, driven by lower single-detached starts. However, Vancouver and Toronto both registered much stronger declines in multi-unit starts than in single-detached starts, while Montreal saw similarly large declines in both unit types.”
The standalone monthly SAAR of total housing starts for all areas in Canada in July was 275,329 units, an increase of 1.1% from June. The SAAR of total urban starts decreased by 0.8% to 254,371 units in July. Multi-unit urban starts declined by 0.3% to 195,987 units, while single-detached urban starts decreased by 2.3% to 58,384 units.
Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 20,958 units.