Issue 18-27: Building Permits

February 7, 2018

The value of building permits grew 27.3% (seasonally adjusted) in December from the previous month. Increases in permits for residential (+50.6) and industrial (+12.8%) projects offset decreases for institutional (‑36.3%) and commercial (‑13.5%) buildings. The value of permits rose in Vancouver (+38.9%), where most of the province’s building activity occurs, while Abbotsford-Mission (+167.1%) and Victoria (+69.2%) both saw large increases as well. Kelowna (‑31.6%) saw a decrease in the value of permits issued.

Nationally, building permits increased by 4.8% in December. There was growth in Saskatchewan (+31.5%), British Columbia (+27.3%), and Quebec (+20.6%). Conversely, the value of permits contracted in Manitoba (‑25.4%), Alberta (‑10.5%), and Atlantic Canada (‑5.4%).

Regional Building Permits

Through December of 2017, the value of building permits issued in the province’s regions climbed 17.5% (unadjusted) above the level recorded in the same period last year. Investment intentions were up in most regions ranging from 7.3% in Kootenay to 156.0% in Nechako. Planned spending rose in Mainland/Southwest (+16.8%), where increases were seen for institutional and governmental (+64.9%), industrial (+60.2%), commercial (+17.2%), and residential (+12.2%) projects. Overall permits continued to increase in North Coast (+79.6%), Thompson/Okanagan (+23.4%), and Vancouver Island/Coast (+22.3%), while the only regions to see declines were Northeast (‑30.3%) and Cariboo (‑9.8%).

Data Source: Statistics Canada (Regional data produced by BC Stats from unpublished data)