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Residential construction investment, first quarter 2016

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Released: 2016-06-02

In the first quarter, total investment in residential construction rose 2.1% compared with the same quarter in 2015 to $26.1 billion. This marked the ninth consecutive year-over-year gain.

The increase came from all components, except acquisition costs related to new dwelling units and semi-detached dwellings. Higher investment in apartment and apartment-condominium building construction (up 21.2% to $4.1 billion) was responsible for much of the advance at the national level.

At the provincial level, increases were recorded in four provinces, with Ontario and British Columbia registering the largest gains.

In Ontario, spending on residential construction grew 11.3% to $10.8 billion in the first quarter, marking the second consecutive double-digit year-over-year advance. Higher investment in single-family dwelling construction, renovation work, and apartment and apartment-condominium building construction accounted for most of the advance.

Total investment in British Columbia increased 10.1% from the first quarter of the previous year to $4.6 billion in the first quarter. This was largely the result of increased spending on apartment and apartment-condominium buildings, acquisition costs related to new dwelling units and single-family dwellings.

The largest year-over-year decline was recorded in Alberta, followed distantly by Manitoba and Nova Scotia.

Compared with the first quarter of the previous year, spending in Alberta dropped 16.1% to $4.0 billion in the first quarter. This was the fourth straight year-over-year decline and was mainly attributable to lower investment in the construction of single-family dwellings and decreased acquisition costs related to new dwelling units.

In Manitoba, residential construction spending totalled $656 million in the first quarter, down 11.8% from the same quarter in 2015. The decline was mostly due to decreased spending on renovation work and single-family dwelling construction.

In Nova Scotia, total investment fell 13.7% to $456 million in the first quarter. The decline occurred mainly as a result of lower spending on renovation work and, to a lesser extent, acquisition costs and single-family houses.

  Note to readers

Data on residential construction investment are not seasonally adjusted and all comparisons in this release are between the first quarter of 2015 and the first quarter of 2016. Data are expressed in current dollars and are available at national and provincial levels.

With this release, data from the first quarter to the fourth quarter of 2015 have been revised.

Unless otherwise stated, the highlights are ranked in terms of dollar change rather than percentage change.

Next release

Data on residential construction investment for the second quarter will be released on September 2.

Contact information

For more information, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300;

To enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact Mariane Bien-Aimé (613-951-7520;, Investment, Science and Technology Division.

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