VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – The house with the white picket fence is not “the dream” anymore. The latest Statistics Canada numbers on housing show double-digit gains for the number of new condo and apartment starts in recent years.

In Metro Vancouver, more people are living in condos than single detached homes. Forty per cent of owners are living in multi-unit buildings, compared to 34 per cent in houses.

Cameron Muir with the BC Real Estate Association says this trend has been developing over the last decade, and all appearances show it will continue.

“In fact, if you look at the first eight months of this year, over 80 per cent of housing starts in the Metro Vancouver area were multiples, either townhouses or apartment units,” he explains.

“Land constraints in Vancouver certainly have driven land prices very high and that’s why we have the highest home prices in the country,” Muir adds. “One way to counter that is to have higher density.”

Nationally, 55 per cent of Canadians live in single detached homes.

Stats Canada has also found that the size of homes and condos has been shrinking, and says this is in part because Canadians are having fewer children.