residential construction permits

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The value of residential building permits issued in Canadian cities fell 3.1 per cent to $4.4 billion in November as municipalities approved the construction of fewer homes.

According to Statistics Canada, 16,899 new dwellings were okayed that month, an 8.8 per cent drop from October. Multi-family dwellings drove the decline, falling by 11.2 per cent to 10,777 units in November, while single-family homes measured a 4.1 per cent decrease to 6,122 units.

In their latest econoFacts report, the Bank of Montreal noted that the decline is “consistent with the softening of housing starts” seen in December.

The value of building permits for multi-family dwellings dropped 3.5 per cent to $2 billion in November. Single family homes weren’t far behind with a 2.6 per cent fall to $2.4 billion.

Seven of the 10 provinces measured a month-to-month decline in the value of building permits: Quebec, Prince Edward Island, Alberta, British Columbia, Newfoundland, Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia.

On the flip side, Manitoba saw 29.4 per cent increase in the value of residential building permits between November and December, the largest among the provinces. Ontario followed with a 16.2 per cent boost, while New Brunswick saw a 5.3 per cent bump.

The decline in the non-residential building sector was more dramatic. Country-wide, the value of permits dropped 25.8 per cent to $1.2 billion in November. Statistics Canada noted that 24 of the 34 census metropolitan areas studied saw an overall drop in construction intentions in both sectors. Toronto saw the biggest jump, followed by followed by Barrie and Winnipeg. All three cities recorded a surge due to an increase in construction intentions for multi-family dwellings.

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