Housing starts were up 21% last year

Housing starts were up 21% last year

New CMHC data shows signifcant increase

Although Canadian real estate is currently mired in a supply shortage, new CMHC data shows housing starts took quite the leap last year. And this growth is slowly starting to hit the market. New home completions reached one of its highest levels on record.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) for housing starts reached 261,0000 homes last month, down from November's SAAR of 268,000 units. Last year, actual housing starts were up 21 per cent from the previous year.

Despite serious material and labor shortages, Canada had 223,000 new homes completed and and delivered, the highest figure sine the 1970's. Douglas Porter, chief economist for BMO believes the discrepancy between starts and completions is at around 48,000 units, which would make for the largest gap ever recorded. He believes the average gap is at about 8,000 units.

Source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

As per new stats, Canada is home to approximately 10.5 million families, an increase of 120,000 from 2020. This number does not include people who are not in a "census family," such as adults living with another family, renting a house, living with their parents or their children.

Next year is forecast to see even more completions. Canada may deliver even more units next year, as supply chain pressures ease. “…this year could easily see a record-high number of units completed (1974 holds the record at 257,000),” explains Porter.

As interest rates slowly increase and home price hikes slow down, an increase in housing inventory should materialize.