Christmas in May…. Demographic and Housing data

On May 3rd, the second installment of the 2016 Census data will be released. This release will sum up the demographic and gender data as well as the types of dwellings inhabited in our community. Much like the first census release which was just population totals and dwelling counts the actual in-depth analysis that can be conducted is somewhat limited.

At a very micro-level within certain DAs it will be interesting to see if overall housing types have contracted or if conversions from single family to multi-family; apartment to condo have occurred. The changes in demographics will also be important to those who are interested in community schools as changes in neighbourhoods demographics can and will alter school viability.

Important Things to Remember

  • Remember all of the data was collected May-July 2016. This means that it is already a year old and it will have missed some of the more recent events such as the continued downward trends in unemployment or the spiking housing market.
  • From a housing standpoint, the vast majority of construction over the last 5 years has been in single detached homes, expect to see that rise significantly in some areas – particularly LaSalle and Lakeshore.

Bold Predictions/Educated Guesses

  • I wouldn’t be surprised there will be a slight baby-boom in the region as good economic times tend to correlate with more babies. We also know from school board reports that enrollment in boards are up due to Syrian families enrolling their children
  • A growing senior population is not a surprise particularly since there are efforts to attract retirees to our region, I would expect greater numbers of them settling in Lakeshore and LaSalle.
  • An interesting place to watch will be Leamington. Anecdotally, youth flight has continued from the South Shore, it will be interesting to see if that has registered in the data.
  • I imagine most of the apartment growth will be due to conversion of single family homes to other types of housing stock.
  • See my population pyramid below to show I think the demographics will shake out.
    • The pyramid is built on a model that took the 2011 population, modified it by birth and death rates as well as estimate of inward/outward migration accounting for Syrian refugees and workers returning to our region after the recession.


We will see on the 3rd how my estimates turnout.

2 thoughts on “Christmas in May…. Demographic and Housing data

  1. I’m really looking forward to seeing how next week’s numbers compare to the Ministry of Finance’s most recent projections, which were last updated in 2016.

    I agree with you about the likelihood of a greater number of seniors in Lakeshore and LaSalle. My realtor friends tell me the Banwell area is also very popular among those aged 65+. Many are downsizing.

    I’ve been hearing about a lot of income property buying as well, both by local residents and out of towners. This isn’t surprising in this low interest rate environment. It would fuel higher housing prices but wouldn’t necessarily be indicative of higher population demands. Do you know if income properties are tracked in the rental market stats?

    • The Ministry projections despite being released in 2016 were based on 2011 Census data. The annual updates tweak the assumption annually based on best guesses of migration from tax returns, immigration etc. More or less the Census will be hard reboot, they might be close but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

      Income properties would be tracked as rental properties as they ask if you own or rent but do not differentiate between type of housing. I believe the rental data won’t come out until later in the year in the Housing data in October. This will only be a count of number of units of each housing type based on response.

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