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May 24, 2023

Home improvements drive rural construction investment

In 2021, over 40,000 residential building permits were issued in rural Canada, representing a total value of nearly $12.5 billion in construction intentions. Over three-quarters (77.8%) of these permits were related to single homes, says Statistics Canada’s ‘Rural Canada Housing Profiles (RCHP), 2018 to 2021.’ Over half (52.9%) of investments in residential building construction in rural areas went into alterations and improvements, while about two-fifths (42.1%) went into construction to establish new units. This compares with shares of 44.3% for alterations and improvements and 51.4% for new construction in urban areas. The highest share in rural areas for alterations and improvements was in Newfoundland and Labrador (72.3%), while the lowest share was in Northwest Territories (13%). The residential building permits issued in Canada's rural communities in 2021 represent 21.8% of the country's total. In 2021, over $26.2 billion was invested in residential building construction in Canada's rural areas, 15.9% of the country's total. From 2018 to 2021, these investments rose 70.1% in rural areas, compared with a 30.6% increase in urban areas.

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