OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Oct. 8, 2013) - Housing starts in Ottawa Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) were trending at 7,963 units in September compared to 7,525 units in August according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR)1 of housing starts.

"Seasonally adjusted housing starts trended slightly lower in September compared to August, but remained robust boosting third quarter starts 28 percent ahead of the previous quarter. While low-rise construction scaled back compared to the previous month, stronger apartment construction lifted total starts," said Sandra Perez Torres, Senior Market Analyst for Eastern and Northern Ontario.

CMHC uses the trend measure as a complement to the monthly SAAR of housing starts to account for considerable swings in monthly estimates and obtain a more complete picture of the state of the housing market. In some situations, analysing only SAAR data can be misleading in some markets, as they are largely driven by the multiples segment of the markets, which can be quite variable from one month to the next. The multiples segment includes apartments, rows and semi-detached homes. In Ottawa, the standalone monthly SAAR was 7,768 units in September down from 8,966 units in August.

In September, fourty per cent of total construction activity took place in Gloucester (outside the greenbelt), where apartment construction represented the Lion's share of activity in the area. This is the highest apartment construction on record in this area. Following in second place was Ottawa's core. However, year-to-date downtown Ottawa has seen most activity driven by apartment construction.

Preliminary Housing Starts data is also available in English and French at the following link: Preliminary Housing Starts Tables

As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 65 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of 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.

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1 All starts figures in this release, other than actual starts and the trend estimate, 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 allows for a comparison from one season to the next and from one month to the next. 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.

Additional data is available upon request.

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Tables and a graph are available at the following address:

Contact Information:

Sandra Perez-Torres, Senior Market Analyst

National Media Contact:
Beth Bailey, Consultant, Communications and Marketing
(416) 218-3355