STEEL FRAMING ALLIANCE | FRAMEWORK ONLINE
September 3, 2008
FROM THE FIELD
 
The Popularity of Multifamily Housing Increases in Canada

By Ed Hernandez
Market Development Representative, Canada
Ehernandez@steelframing.org

As mortgage carrying costs have moved higher, less expensive multifamily housing (row, semi-detached, and apartment units) has increased in popularity relative to single detached housing.

According to CMHC, this year and next will see multifamily housing starts outnumber single-detached activity for the first time since 1982. Furthermore, 2009 will mark the sixth consecutive year in which multiple starts have surpassed the 100,000 unit mark, a feat only seen once before in the 1968 to 1973 period.

Multifamily housing starts are forecast to rise 7.4 per cent to 117,550 units this year. While multifamily starts are forecast to drop by 14.2 per cent to 100,875 units in 2009, it will be the first year-over year decline since 1998, when multiple starts barely exceeded 51,000 units.

Apartment construction has been growing for 11 consecutive years since bottoming out at just over 23,000 starts in 1996. The resurgence in apartment construction has been pushing multiple starts higher in recent years. Apartment starts are forecast to reach a 31-year high this year, growing 18.8 per cent to 85,200 units before declining 14.1 per cent to 73,175 units in 2009.


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Brought to you by the Steel Framing Alliance (SFA) on the first Wednesday of each month, Framework Online arms you with the latest news and commentary on the steel framing and construction industries. In addition to industry headlines, trends and project profiles, Framework Online provides information and ideas that will better enable members to increase their participation in the residential and commercial construction markets.