Canada Has Never Had This Much Housing Under Construction At The Same Time

Canada’s recent real estate price boom is creating a lot of incentive for development. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) data show housing under construction jumped in Q4 2019. The number of homes currently being built across Canada is now at the highest level since… uh, ever.

Canada Has Never Build This Much Housing At The Same Time Before

Canada has never built more housing at the same time. There were 274,829 units under construction in Q4 2019, up 2.82% from the previous quarter. This represents an increase of 7.40% from the same quarter a year before. The current peak is a little over 30% higher than any other previous peak.

Canadian Homes Under Construction

The number of housing units under construction across Canada.

Source: CMHC, Better Dwelling.

Ontario Hasn’t Built This Many Homes Since 1973

Ontario represents the largest segment of the units currently under construction. The province represents 118,576 of the units in Q4 2019, up 2.33% from the previous quarter. Units under construction are up a whopping 8.77% from the same quarter a year before. The previous peak for housing under construction was all the way back in 1973.

Ontario Homes Under Construction

The number of housing units under construction across Ontario.

Source: CMHC, Better Dwelling.

B.C. Has Over 47% More Houses Under Construction Than Any Other Period

British Columbia also represented a decent chunk of units currently being built. The province represented 65,941 housing units under construction, up 2.39% from the previous quarter. Compared to a year before, this is an 8% increase. Currently, the number of units under construction is over 47% higher than any other previous peak.

BC Homes Under Construction

The number of housing units under construction across BC.

Source: CMHC, Better Dwelling.

Canada’s recent real estate price boom spurred a lot of investment into construction. The country is now building more units than it ever has. Most of this supply won’t be hitting the market in the near term, but when it does – it’s going to relieve a lot of pressure for prices to move higher.

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  • Yvette L 4 years ago

    Finally pointed out the big issue. House prices rise, increasing the amount of production available to cash in. If they stop rising, people stop building. How do you handle an inflow of immigrants as large as the one we’re seeing?

    • Matt 4 years ago

      Immigrants don’t just keep pouring into a region when it becomes too expensive. Look at Monaco or HK. When the economics make sense, people move there. When they don’t, they don’t.

      It’s not a coincidence that immigration drops when housing construction declines. When there’s no more money, there’s no more opportunity. The crash boom cycle continues.

      • Alan Mc 4 years ago

        Its the other way around, people come, homes get built, people stop coming, why built homes??

        Lots of reason to come however, $550 a month per kid, free health care, OAS, cheap University, anchor kids can sponsor parents and a generous welfare system etc etc.

        I know a few people who have 6 month+ pregnant woman staying in their basement until the kid is born….

  • Little Red Riding Hood 4 years ago

    Will these units/homes actually be sold to Canadian citizens who need them? Or to foreigners who want to keep putting laundered money in our country. That’s the big question. I say the latter.

  • SUMSKILLZ 4 years ago

    I worry most about building build quality. The horror stories I hear socially make me wonder. The news stories of falling glass and flooding, make me wonder.

    Let me guess…the building industry will deflect blame to climate change as the decades go by? Not shoddy design or materials or construction work.

    Shortages of materials and skilled/knowledgeable trades in a bubble market scare me. Vacant condos or too many condos for sale, less so.

  • Gregory Costigan 4 years ago

    Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

  • Bill Ferguson 4 years ago

    This article has been posted to the “Metro Vancouver Housing Collapse” Facebook group; feel fre to join and share in the information/discussions along with 8,251 others.

  • CanadaSucks 4 years ago

    Graphic are point toward the sky around 2015-2019. The are basically approaching infinite rate of
    growth. Take Ontario graph.

    2015 81343
    2019 118576

    Slope =(118576-81343)/(2019-2015)=9308 new unites per yer for this periods.

    What is the average price of these new unites. Can immigrants afford them,. If they cannot this can only come from money laundering, Like I said Canada is nation with future that will pimp itself out to the cheap buyer.

  • SH 4 years ago

    Look at all that bulding in Ontario in the 1970s. On a per capita basis given the population at the time, those were crazy high build rates. Back when governments put citizens’ interests first over foreign investors.

  • @xelan_gta 4 years ago

    Great article.
    Supply in GTA will start hitting the market right now.
    30k condo completions expected for both 2020 and 2021. This is more than 50% increase compared to 2019 ones.

  • Holton 4 years ago

    I like Justin Trudeau as a person, but Im afraid his and the Liberals political legacy for these two terms will be making housing unaffordable for young families. Many many young talented people can no longer afford homes and are forced and lured to the states. We need to bring down housing price by taxing all none primary residential property and corporate owned residential properties.

    • Sophia 4 years ago

      Unfortunately, the reality is that young people will not be able to afford houses in Canada and they will leave to states or somewhere else but that is not a problem for the country because we have a high immigration .

      Here is a good summary that I found on another forum what actually happened in past 2 years:

      “Basically, this is what happened with stress test, carefully analyze update from the real estate agent : “The Great Toronto Real Estate Market went through a number of changes, and now that we’re in 2020 we are seeing a return to tight inventory conditions that were common over the past 10 years.
      For Home Buyers, this means that if you’re shopping in the under 800k market, you’re going to want to be prepared because homes are selling fast. This means having your pre approvals and understanding the market that way when the right home does come up, that you’re in a position to act.
      For Sellers, this means that if you are looking to move up to a larger home, it’s a great time to take advantage of the equity you gained in your smaller home.” basically, the price of smaller properties elevated so that expensive detached can be still sold. That also means that the rent on smaller properties will increase due to increased value (bigger mortgage) and first time buyers are excluded from the market all together, they will pay high rent.”

      • Holton 4 years ago

        What you said makes no sense, if young Canadians cant afford homes how will immigrants making possibly less afford homes? Would these people eventually leave?

        Or if you are thinking immigrants all come here with cash and are not dependent on income then the question is we are basically replacing young in demand Canadian talent with immigrants with no professional skills? If you argue they are professionals mostly then we are back to the point where these people making the same amount will eventually leave too.

        If we have a supply problem make people with multiple residential real estate sell those extra home. Simple as that

        • Sophia 4 years ago

          Canada used to be attractive for professionals but nowadays, you have to be a professional and bring a lots of money with you, otherwise you will have a hard time surviving in this country even if you get a decent job, considering a cost of living. Nobody will come here to live on the edge unless they run from something and they didn’t have a better choice. If the current housing trend continues, young Canadian professionals will leave for a better opportunities elsewhere ; better paid job and cheaper housing. Unfortunately , the Canadian real estate market is a global market and as long as we have enough buyers in the world to invest in Canadian properties for whatever reason they do it (ROI, money-laundering , “just in case”), the local residents will need to compete with the rest of world . This has been happening for a while. I hope you noticed it. Do we have stats on how many properties are vacant and how the vacant tax will improve the current situation. Everyone is talking about the vacant tax , but not sure if we have studies done on how it will correct market ? Will it drop 30% or 3-4 % , still unaffordable

  • Max 4 years ago

    Humans destroy ecosystem. Rich humans destroy human ecosystem.

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