Residential Building Construction Input Price Indexes

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This survey produced monthly indexes which measure price changes for labour and materials used in single detached residential construction.

Data release - -


This survey produced monthly indexes which measure price changes for labour and materials used in single detached residential construction.


  • Construction price indexes
  • Prices and price indexes

Data sources and methodology


This is a sample survey with a cross-sectional design.

Error detection

Indexes originally are subject to revision every 3 months through the follow-ups of non-response samples. Material selling price used as proxies for purchase prices, union wage rates used as proxies for non-union wages.


Combined and separate indexes for materials and labour are estimated on a regional basis. Also, materials, and labour indexes for main trades are estimated and published on Canada total basis. As some materials are priced regionally, composite material input indexes are not synonymous between regions.

Quality evaluation

The Canada Total and, material and labour indexes are derived from the weighted average of price movements for materials and union wage rates. The regional indexes are derived in a similar manner. The material index is based on manufacturers' shipment selling prices for commodities. Labour indexes are measured by the changes in the basic union wage rates for selected trades in 13 major cities. These indexes measure price change of selected inputs and are not adjusted for productivity changes or changes in design. Other elements of cost, such as site preparation, contractor's overhead and profit, are not covered. It should also be noted that most residential construction of this type is performed by non-union labour. The survey excludes inputs into other classes of residential construction such as apartments or single unit houses in towns and rural areas. Generally manufacturers' selling prices provide price movement at the factory gate, at the national and not a regional or provincial level. Commodity prices are adjusted for changes in federal sales tax. Weights are derived from a 1969 study by CMHC of material requirements for new houses, augmented by estimates of labour requirements by trade, to establish the relative importance of each trade and the material-labour ratio. Regional data are weighted according to housing start information in the reference period. All weights are expressed at 1971 prices. In compiling the residential input price indexes a total of 56 material components and 14 union wage rates are indexed to generate regional and main trade input indexes. Of the 56 material components: 49 are priced nationally and the remaining 7 are priced regionally. The material and labour components of input indexes are then grouped into 23 trades of which the 14 main trades represent about 90% of total inputs. Indexes are published in catalogue 62-007, monthly.

Disclosure control

Statistics Canada is prohibited by law from releasing any information it collects that could identify any person, business, or organization, unless consent has been given by the respondent or as permitted by the Statistics Act. Various confidentiality rules are applied to all data that are released or published to prevent the publication or disclosure of any information deemed confidential. If necessary, data are suppressed to prevent direct or residual disclosure of identifiable data.

In order to prevent any data disclosure, confidentiality analysis is done using the Statistics Canada Generalized Disclosure Control System (G-Confid). G-Confid is used for primary suppression (direct disclosure) as well as for secondary suppression (residual disclosure). Direct disclosure occurs when the value in a tabulation cell is composed of or dominated by few enterprises while residual disclosure occurs when confidential information can be derived indirectly by piecing together information from different sources or data series.

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