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Canadian housing starts fell 3 per cent in November to 192,235 units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR).  The trend in Canadian new home construction declined slightly to 194,014 units SAAR over the past six months, a rate that is slightly higher than demographic demand suggests is needed.  On a year-over-year basis, housing starts were down 5.5 per cent.

New home construction in BC urban centres increased in November by 12.5 per cent to 26,954 units SAAR . On a year-over-year basis, total starts were 23 per cent higher than November 2012. Single-detached starts were up 47 per cent over last November, while multiple starts rose 15 per cent. Year-to-date, total BC housing starts are down 3 per cent.

Looking at census metropolitan areas (CMA) in BC, total starts in the Vancouver CMA rebounded from some weakness in October, rising 19 per cent year-over-year at 1,477 units.  Single family starts increased 62 per cent while multiples were up 10 per cent. In the Victoria CMA, total starts fell 15 per cent year-over-year as a sharp drop in multiple unit starts offset a rise in single detached units. New home construction in the Kelowna CMA continues to post marked improvement. Total starts doubled year-over-year in November on strength in both single detached and multiple unit starts.  In the Abbotsford-MIssion CMA, starts increased 50 per cent from November 2012.

Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.

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