Canadian Housing Starts (March 2021)

BC New House Real Estate BuildingCanadian housing starts increased 21.6% m/m to 335,200k units in March at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR), after declining in February. Building activity was up month-over-month in both multi-unit (+34%) and single-detached (+4%) segments. On a year-over-year basis, starts were up 70%, though this measure will become quite distorted by base-year effects going forward as we compare to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The six-month moving average in Canadian housing starts stands at a very strong 273,664 units SAAR.

In BC, housing starts increased by 57% m/m to a record high 71.2K units SAAR, following an increase of 21% in the previous month. That remarkable jump in new home construction was the product of a flood of building activity in the multi-unit segment, which was up by 77%, while single-detached starts were up 7%. The rise in the multi-unit segment was led by Vancouver, which reported a 71% increase in multi-unit starts in March to an all-time record of 3,120 units or 41K units SAAR. On a year-over-year basis, total housing starts were up by 106% in BC.

BC Real Estate Housing Starts
Housing Starts By City
Source - BCREA