Construction of multi-family homes took the worst hit last month, says the Canadian Mortgage Housing Corporation.


Ontario’s home starts took a hit last month.

The Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) of urban starts dipped to 56,400 units, down from 70,000 unit starts registered in May.

The volatile multi-family home segment pulled starts lower in June, particularly in the Toronto area. Despite a moderation in starts, the all important single-detached segment has remained stable in recent months highlighting the resilience of the housing market generally.

The longer-term trend for Ontario housing starts has been one of high starts levels, gradually edging lower. For example, while actual urban Ontario home starts for the year are 16 per cent lower compared to 2006, home starts are expected to remain above recent historical averages.

“Construction of multi-family homes, particularly apartments, is volatile on a monthly basis due to a host of factors, which include the volume of units currently under construction, housing completions and labour and material constraints. As strong condominium sales begin to translate into starts, Ontario construction activity is expected to run above trend,” said Ted Tsiakopoulos, CMHC’s Ontario regional economist.

“Recent tightening in Ontario resale markets combined with strong consumer confidence will support new construction activity in the back half of 2007,” Tsiakopoulos added.