CMHC: Slow market to carrry into 2014

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The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has released its fourth quarter housing outlook in which it warns about a slower market carrying over into 2014.

“Housing starts have remained relatively stable since March 2013 and are expected to continue this trend until mid-2014. In the latter half of 2014, housing starts are forecast to moderate,” the report said. “Total housing starts are expected to decline to 185,000 units in 2013 and then remain mostly unchanged, reaching 184,700 units in 2014.”

Resales are expected to remain relatively unchanged for the rest of 2013 before experiencing an uptick in early 2014 and eventually levelling back out. CMHC expects 2013 to see 456,700 resales, while 2014 is expected to see 468,200.

For its part, Western Canada – and, specifically Calgary – will lead the country in housing starts in 2014.

“After declining in the first quarter of 2013, total housing starts in Canada exhibited a stable quarterly path in the two last quarters and are expected to show a similar trend for the remainder of 2013,” the report states. “The trend in total housing starts edged up in September while remaining close to the range of roughly 182,000 to 188,000 units that was observed between March and August of 2013.”

For its part, Ontario is forecast to see a slowdown in multi-family housing starts; signalling a shift to a more balanced market between single-family homes and multi-family homes, such as apartments and condos.

“Multi-family home construction will slow to 37,300 units this year, and to 36,600 units in 2014. The apartment sector has captured a growing share of new home activity in recent years, but has begun to normalize,” reads the report. “As a result, a rebalancing away from apartments toward semi-detached and row construction will occur, given more modest inventories for these dwelling types.”

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