Construction on townhouses in the MidTown development on Yale Road in Chilliwack on Aug. 10, 2018. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

Construction shift towards multiples in Chilliwack: CMHC report

Move away from single family homes reflective of national trend

The slow move away from single family home construction continues in Chilliwack.

The shift toward multi-unit housing is a common theme across the Lower Mainland and indeed across Canada, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) data.

Overall construction activity across the region was lower in July 2018 compared to July 2017 including in Chilliwack, but year-to-date local starts are up, despite a drop in single family home construction.

There were just 15 single family home starts in July compared to 60 in July 2017 in Chilliwack. Year to date, there were just 284 singles compared to 372 a year ago.

But overall starts for the first seven months of 2018 were 569 up from 532 in 2017. That’s because of 285 multiple-unit starts compared to 160 the year prior.

“Housing starts trended lower in July 2018 as fewer projects in both the single-detached and multi-family segments got underway,” said Eric Bond, CMHC’s principal analyst for Metro Vancouver. “The densifying cities of Vancouver, Burnaby, and North Vancouver were focal points for new multi-family construction during the month.”

The construction numbers cooling slightly while moving towards multiples, understandably mirrors the real estate market, which is seeing a slight move towards multiples away from single family homes.

With 1,958 units sold so far in 2018 that’s a 21.1 per cent drop from the same period in 2017.

The average price of a home sold in July 2018 was $490,652, a significant drop from the average around $530,000 for the three months prior. This is as a result of, not an actual drop in home prices, but increased activity in the lower end of the market, which includes apartments and townhouses.

• READ MORE: Chilliwack real estate sales hit a cool spot in July’s hot weather


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