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For additional information relating to this article, please contact:

Barbara Ruszel Economist
Tel: 902-424-1848Email:

January 09, 2018

Nova Scotia's housing starts (seasonally adjusted annualized rate) has rebounded somewhat in the past two months, increasing 1.5 per cent month to month (seasonally adjusted at annual rates) to 3,563 in December compared to 3,511 in November. The Halifax market influenced the increase, rising by 8.5 per cent to 2,949 starts in December, up from November's estimate of 2,718.  

Compared to December 2016, Nova Scotia housing starts were up 1.5 per cent cent while Halifax starts were up 62.8 per cent, owing to a particularly slow December 2016.  

The six month average of housing starts has remained relatively flat in both Nova Scotia and Halifax in 2017, albeit with some variability month-to-month. This followed a steady increase through most of 2016, starting the year at around 2,500 and rising to around 4,000 by the end of the year. 

Across the country, the pace of housing starts decreased by 13.8 per cent to 216,980 in December compared to November. Housing starts were 5.4 per cent higher than in December 2016. Monthly starts were higher in all provices except PEI, Ontario, and Alberta.

In year over year terms, all provinces except Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Alberta saw increases. 


Nova Scotia's housing starts in 2017 were at a level of 3,895, a 5.8 per cent increase over 2016. Growth in multiples more than made up for a decline in single detached units. Apartments and other unit types led the multiples, while semi detached and row houses declined in 2017.  

Since 2011, multiples have outnumbered single detached units in Nova Scotia, the highest being in 2011 (2,599). In 2017, starts of multiples was at a level of 2,514. Single detached units dropped to a level of 1,471 in 2017. 

Housing starts for 2017 were up in all provinces compared to 2016, led by Prince Edward Island, Manitoba, and New Brunswick in percentage terms. Across Canada, housing start growth was 11.0 per cent compared to 2016. 

Note: Urban areas are defined as areas over 10,000 people

Statistics Canada: CANSIM table 027-0054, CANSIM table 027-0051. Annual Data: CANSIM table 027-0009

CHMC Housing Market Information Portal

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