OTTAWA — The seasonally adjusted annual rate1 of housing starts was 181,100 units in November, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). This is down from 208,800 units in October 2011.

“Housing starts declined in November, reaching a level which is more consistent with the rate of household formation. The decrease in housing starts was due to a moderation in the multiples segment,” said Mathieu Laberge, Deputy Chief Economist at CMHC’s Market Analysis Centre.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts decreased by 14.4 per cent to 158,900 units in November. Urban single starts increased by 3.5 per cent in November to 63,600 units, while multiple urban starts were down by 23.3 per cent to 95,300 units.

November’s seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts decreased by 30.6 per cent in Ontario, 13.4 per cent in the Prairies and 3.6 per cent in British Columbia. Urban starts increased 8.3 per cent in Atlantic Canada and 3.2 per cent in Québec.

SOURCE: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Rural starts2 were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 22,200 units in November.

As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 65 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of high quality, environmentally sustainable and affordable housing solutions. CMHC also provides reliable, impartial and up-to-date housing market reports, analysis and knowledge to support and assist consumers and the housing industry in making informed decisions.

1 All starts figures in this release, other than actual starts, are seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) — that is, monthly figures adjusted to remove normal seasonal variation and multiplied by 12 to reflect annual levels. By removing seasonal ups and downs, seasonal adjustment makes it possible to highlight the fundamental trends of a series. Reporting monthly figures at annual rates indicates the annual level of starts that would be obtained if the monthly pace was maintained for 12 months. This facilitates comparison of the current pace of activity to annual forecasts as well as to historical annual levels.

2 CMHC estimates the level of starts in centres with a population of less than 10,000 for each of the three months of the quarter, at the beginning of each quarter. During the last month of the quarter, CMHC conducts the survey in these centres and revises the estimate.

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