TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Jan. 9, 2015) - Housing starts in Hamilton Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) were trending down at 2,696 units in December compared to 2,888 units in November, 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.

"The trend in Hamilton CMA total housing starts declined in December 2014, mostly due to weaker townhouse construction. Prior to this month's decline, townhouse starts had increased for seven consecutive months. Total housing starts for 2014 were up 4.5 per cent compared to 2013. A tight resale market, with listings of affordable homes in short supply, continued to encourage home buyers to buy new townhouses, which are a more affordable ground-oriented home type," said Abdul Kargbo, CMHC's Senior Market Analyst for Hamilton and Brantford CMAs.

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.

The standalone monthly SAAR was 1,632 units in December, down from 3,146 units in November. The December decline in housing starts occurred across all dwelling types, with the exception of apartment segment. However, apartment starts for 2014 were down 28 per cent compared to 2013.

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

As Canada's authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers objective housing research and advice to Canadian governments, consumers and the housing industry.

Follow CMHC on Twitter @CMHC_ca

Additional data is available upon request.

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To view the graph and tables associated with this release, please visit the following link:

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.

Contact Information:

Market Analysis Contact:
Abdul Kargbo

Media Contact:
Beth Bailey