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After two straight months of declines, April saw the total value of building permits issued by Canadian municipalities edge up 1.1. per cent to $6.04 billion. According to Statistics Canada, the residential sector buoyed the numbers, offsetting the decline felt in the non-residential world.

Altogether, intentions for residential construction accounted for $3.7 billion in permits, a second consecutive monthly gain, while non-residential permits totaled $2.3 billion, down 0.4 per cent from March.

Six provinces, led by Quebec, Saskatchewan and Ontario, saw the value of permits in both sectors increase month-to-month. As far as the residential sector’s concerned, Ontario, Alberta and Nova Scotia helped push along the advance while British Columbia and two additional provinces posted declines.

After declining two months in a row, the value of building permits for single-family homes rose 2.8 per cent to $2.1 billion in April. Ontario was largely responsible for the surge, which kept the total tally up despite declines in five provinces. On the other side of the country, Alberta posted the biggest drop in permits for single-family houses.

Building permits for multi-family dwellings also rose, albeit not as much as the low-rise market. In April, Canadian municipalities issued $1.6 billion worth of building permits for multi-family homes, up 1.1 per cent from March. Seven of the provinces posted higher construction intentions compared to the month before, with Alberta posted the largest gain, followed by Nova Scotia and Manitoba.

Just over half of the 34 metros in the study saw their total value of permits increase in April, with Calgary, London and Halifax at the forefront.

See the chart below for more details:

Canadian building permits

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