Building Permits, March 2013, published May 6

Posted by on May 23, 2013 in Featured | 0 comments

Municipalities issued $6.5 billion worth of building permits in March, up 8.6% from February but 6.7% lower than in March 2012.     

The only three provinces to report a growth in permits over a year earlier were Alberta (+38.2%), Prince Edward Island (+36.2%) and Saskatchewan (+22.6%) Double-digit annualized decreases over March 2012 occurred in six provinces.  Newfoundland and Labrador suffered the largest loss (-64.8%) followed by New Brunswick (-53.2%) and Manitoba (-37.2%).  Quebec experienced a 17.4% decline while Ontario’s loss was 16.2%.

Builders took out residential building permits worth $3.6 billion in March, up 1.7% from February but 8.9% lower than in March 2012.  Three provinces reported an annualized growth rate for residential permits: Nova Scotia (+16.5%), Alberta (+16.2%) and Saskatchewan (+14.5%).  Double-digit annualized decreases occurred in five provinces.  The largest losses took place in Quebec (-28.4%), New Brunswick (-27.5%) and Newfoundland and Labrador (-24.9%).  Ontario’s annualized decline for residential permits was 12.4%.

Municipalities issued permits worth $1.4 billion for multi-family dwellings in March, up 13.4% from February but 13.2% lower than in March 2012.  The growth from February to March followed seven monthly decreases in the preceding eight months.  The growth  was largely the result of major condominium apartment projects in Alberta.  Gains were observed in all provinces except Quebec and Prince Edward Island.  Permits for single-family units decreased 4.7% from February to $2.2 billion and were down 5.9% over March 2012.  The decrease from February followed two consecutive monthly increases.  It was the fourth decline in six months.  Six provinces posted monthly decreases with Ontario, Alberta and Manitoba accounting for most of the downturn.

Municipalities approved 14,558 new dwellings in March, up 4.3% from February but 18.8% lower than in March 2012.  There was a 4.3% monthly decrease and a 12.9% annualized loss in the number of single-family units, which totaled 6,237.  There was a 11.8% monthly gain but a 22.7% annualized decrease in the number of multi-family units approved, which totaled 8,321.

The value of non-residential permits in March gained 19.0% from February to $2.8 billion but decreased 3.8% from March 2012.  From February to March, industrial permits gained 17.2% to $472 million; institutional permits grew 118.8% to $980 million; and commercial sector permits were down 9.6% to $1.4 billion.