The cost of building a home in Canada has never been higher. That’s the conclusion in Proof Point: Soaring construction costs will hamper Canada’s homebuilding ambitions, a report on industry costs released by RBC this week. Up 51 per cent since the start of the pandemic, the country’s residential construction price index has well outpaced Consumer Price Index (+13 per cent). Driving the increase are dramatic jumps in prices for key building materials like concrete and structural steel, up 55% and 53% respectively since the first quarter of 2020. Soaring lumber prices in 2021 and early 2022 also drove up costs but have since retreated. This surge in raw material prices, together with a ballooning population, has accelerated increases in the development fees and levies imposed by municipal governments. …RBC is warning that significantly ramping up homebuilding over the medium to longer term will keep costs elevated.