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Canada sees decline in need for family homes

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Single-person households will be the most common set-up in Canada by 2026, according to a report

The annual Canadian Housing Observer by national agency the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation pointed to trends towards living longer and more independently.

It said the decline in family households seen since the 1970s would continue, while single-person homes would increase.

The tipping point will come sometime in the next 12 years.

As a consequence of the change, numbers of owner-occupied apartments are expected to grow, although detached houses will remain the most common type of dwelling.

The number of private households in Canada is expected to reach up to 19.7 million in 2036, from 12.8m 30 years earlier.

Household growth will be between 0.8 per cent and 1.5 per cent per year over the 30 years from 2006 – but this would be slower than the rate in the preceding three decades.

Single dwelling starts increased 1.5 per cent to 83,657 in 2012, the report noted.

Multiple dwelling starts soared 17.6 per cent to 131,170, mainly due to a rise in apartment building.

The CMHC recently predicted an increase in starts in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan in 2014.

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