A press release from the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board (VIREB) says sales of single-family homes from Duncan to Port Hardy were down 16 per cent from October 2017 and up 11 per cent from September 2018. Multiple offers have slowed, and buyers are taking more of a wait-and-see approach, VIREB says.
The British Columbia Construction Association (BCAA) estimates 15,000 construction jobs will go unfilled this year and some subcontractors are hiring foreign illegal workers to deal with the shortage, according to the Oak Bay News. A survey by the Independent Contractors and Businesses Association of BC suggests while most companies are preparing for growth, 60 per cent of construction companies report a shortage of qualified workers.
Building Links, the North Vancouver Island construction report has released its third quarter, year-to-date construction statistics, which compares the permits and construction values for the first 9 months of 2017 and 2018.
They report that total construction values for the Comox Valley and Campbell River now total $223 million for the year, with a $68 million increase from last year, and an $84 million increase from 2016.
According to the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board’s (VIREB) September statistics, sales of single-family homes in their region, which covers from Duncan to Port Hardy, decreased by 32 per cent compared to September 2017 with Nanaimo down 36%, followed in order by Parksville, Campbell River, the Cowichan Valley, Port Alberni, and the Comox Valley at 21%.
“The Victoria Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) housing starts trended higher in August on elevated multi-family construction. A large majority of the starts were in Langford, concentrated in rental projects. Year-to-date starts were up 32% in 2018 from 2017,” said Braden Batch, CMHC’s senior analyst. “The increase in starts was not reflected in the single-detached numbers, which were down 5% year-to-date.”
Construction activity on Vancouver Island continued at a robust rate during the April to June 2018 period (second quarter) with the total value of building permits issued reaching $806.9 million — a 42 per cent gain over the first quarter of 2018.
Total spending on residential construction spiked 45 per cent Island-wide to $698.2 million while non-residential building construction increased 23 per cent to $108.6 million. Construction employment increased by 8.6 per cent Island- wide in the first half of 2018. Victoria led the way with 1,800 more workers on the job in the second quarter.