The CMHC released the montly housing data for markets across Canada. Here is an updated chart tracking housing starts, completions and units under construction in the Vancouver market. I have included a forecast for 2009 which assumes a significant decline in starts during the year and an uptick in completions near the end of the year as many projects are scheduled to wrap up just before Vancouver hosts the Winter Olympics.
A truly amazing statistic contained in the December data is the number of completed but unsold units. The number of unabsorbed units has risen from 1292 in December 2007 to 2363 in December 2008. Obviously, developers are having trouble selling the units that are now vacant and available. This is why we are seeing these creative marketing tactics and price cuts.