Japan Housing Starts: March 2023

Shawn Lawlor

By: Shawn Lawlor

Managing Director, Canada Wood Japan/COFI Japan

March total housing starts fell 3.2% to 73,693 units. The decline was led by owner occupied housing, with the segment falling 13.6% for the 16th consecutive monthly decline. In contrast rental housing edged up 0.9% for the 25th consecutive monthly gain. The mansion condominium market posted a 7.2% increase. Sluggishness was prevalent in wooden single family housing, falling 6.9% to 36,531 units. Post and beam starts fell 8.2% to 28,033 units. Wooden prefab starts increased 4.7% to 817 units and total prefab housing declined 2.2% to 8,504 units. Platform frame declined 3.0% to 7,681 units. Results of 2×4 starts by housing type were as follows: single family custom homes fell 9.9% to 2,044 units, rental housing edged up 0.5% to 4,702 units and built for sale spec housing declined 9.8% to 861 units.

March 2023 Non-Residential Construction

March total non-residential starts decreased 3.1% to 3,439 units. Wooden non-residential starts dropped 6.8% to 1,242 units and wooden floor area fell 5.4% to 222,243m2. For the first three months of 2023 wooden floor area fell 0.3% to 634,575m2. By building use non-residential wooden construction was led by medical, elderly care and social welfare buildings followed by mixed residential/commercial, business services, restaurants and accommodation and agricultural.