Prince George saw 57 new housing starts in September according to the Canada Mortgage Housing Corporation (CMHC).

That’s an across the board increase when compared to the same time last year. “On the single detached side, there was a total of 24 starts and where we saw the increase in September was on the multi-unit side as there were 33 starts in September, relative to just two starts in the same month last year,” said Taylor Pardy, CMHC Market Analyst.

Even with the recent surge, the city is still slightly off last year’s pace. “Starts are down as there have been 214 new homes that have gotten underway so far this year relative to 259 and really it’s only on the multi-unit side where things are falling a little bit behind in Prince George so far this year,” added Pardy.

The situation is essentially the same just to the south of us in Kamloops. “The multi-unit starts in 2017 haven’t really kept pace with the number that got underway in 2016 and so overall, Kamloops starts are down with 333 starts relative to 468 last year.”

However, its the exact opposite in some of the bigger centres across the province including Kelowna, Vancouver and Victoria where the number of multi-unit starts is dwarfing the single detached homes breaking ground.

Pardy says there is a simple reason for this. “The multi-unit side of the market including apartments and condos and in terms of the vacancy rate on the rental side of the market has been fairly tight for the past few years and really what we have seen in some of these larger centres in places like Kelowna, we’ve really seen builders really respond to that market tightness in 2017.”

Just under 29,000 housing starts have taken place province-wide so far in 2017.