Canada's Condominium Magazine

$8.1 billion in new building permits in June 2017, up 2.5% from May, second highest on record

With an inventory shortage in the market, builders are stepping up the pace of building permits, particularly in multi-unit buildings, such as Condominiums. The latest released data indicates that Canadian municipalities issued another $8.1 billion in building permits in June 2017 — the last month tallied by Statistics Canada — although residential permits were $5 billion (a slight drop from May, month over month, of 0.9%).


Building permit changes month over month June 2017 to May 2017 in millions of dollars. Multi-family residential is mostly up, single-family down.


Residential multi-unit building permits are significantly up 12.5% over May, further reinforcing the shift of focus to vertical living and condominiums. Single-family dwelling permits are down significantly by $342.2 million over the previous month, most of that focused on Ontario (at down $247.9 million).

Quarter over quarter up

Comparing second quarter 2017 to first quarter 2017 shows a different picture, of course, taking into account activity prior to the Ontario Fair Housing rules. Municipalities overall issued $23 billion in permits in the second quarter, which is up 10.4 percent over the second quarter of 2017.

Again, multifamily construction was the main driver, rising 11 percent year over year (for the second quarter) to $14.7 billion.


Trending total value (in $billions) of build permits for both residential and non-residential sectors from 2012 to 2017. (Statscan)


Month-over-month: building intentions

Construction intentions were up in 14 of 36 CMAs, led by Toronto, Montreal and Winnipeg. Hamilton showed the largest decline at down 60 percent, but this is largely due to a very strong May. Quebec showed continued strength — the fourth consecutive increase. Manitoba also saw the value of permits rise to $318.9 million, up 40.4 percent, most of it from Winnipeg, which increased by $225.6 million.

Multi-family in Ontario saw increases by $106.5 billion. By comparison, single-family dwelling permits dropped a significant – 257.9 million.


Multi-family dwelling permits are generally significantly up in all provinces, while single family dwelling permit values are sharply down.


Multi-family dwelling sharply up

Condominiums, high rises and other multifamily structures are showing remarkable growth in building permit issued in June versus May 2017 (in millions of dollars):

  • Ontario $106.5 million
  • British Columbia $83.6 million
  • Manitoba $39.7 million
  • Quebec $27.6 million
  • Nova Scotia $22.4 million
  • Saskatchewan $12.7 million
  • Alberta $6.1 million
  • Northwest Territories $1.7 million
  • Yukon $0.1 million

The provinces and territories showing declines in the value of permits for multi-family were:

  • Newfoundland and Labrador down $1.3 million
  • Prince Edward Island down $2.1 million
  • New Brunswick down $0.7 million
  • Nunavut down $0.5 million


Total value of building permits in billions of dollars from 2012 to 2017 (current, June)


Single family dwellings down

Meanwhile, June over May 2017 building permits issued by value in various provinces were mostly down in single family dwellings, with the notable exception of Quebec:

  • Ontario down -$257.9 million
  • British Columbia down -$28.8 million
  • Manitoba down -$14.7 million
  • Quebec UP $13.5 million
  • Nova Scotia down -$1.3 million
  • Saskatchewan down -$0.6 million
  • Alberta down -$51.9 million
  • Northwest Territories down $0.2 million
  • Yukon down -$1.2 million
  • Newfoundland and Labrador UP $1.2 million
  • Prince Edward Island down $2.2 million
  • New Brunswick UP $1.3 million
  • Nunavut UP $0.6 million.
Auberge on the Park-Tridel


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