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Housing Starts Down Marginally in May

OTTAWA, Ontario, June 8, 2006 — The seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts was 216,800 units in May, down marginally from 217,900 units in April, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

"Housing starts last month were nearly unchanged from their April level," said Bob Dugan, Chief Economist at CMHC's Market Analysis Centre. "May marks the fourth consecutive month in which single detached starts have moved lower. Housing starts are expected to continue to trend marginally lower throughout this year and next as housing demand eases in response to rising mortgage carrying costs."

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts decreased 0.6 per cent to 185,700 units. Urban singles were down 1.3 per cent to 89,200 units comparing May to April, while multiples were up 0.1 per cent to 96,500 units.

Urban housing starts increased in May compared to April in three of the five regions and declined in the other two. The Prairie region recorded the strongest increase with urban starts rising 9.0 per cent while Ontario and Quebec urban starts were up 6.4 per cent and 3.3 per cent, respectively. A large decrease in multiple starts accounted for most of the 24.1 per cent decline in British Columbia while urban starts fell 12.6 per cent in the Atlantic region.

Rural starts in May were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 31,100 units.

In the first five months of 2006, actual urban starts were up 4.7 per cent compared to the same period last year. Year-to-date actual urban multiple starts were up 6.9 per cent and singles were up 2.5 per cent compared to the same period in 2005.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has been Canada's national housing agency for over 60 years. CMHC is committed to helping Canadians access a wide choice of quality, affordable homes, while making vibrant, healthy communities and cities a reality across the country. For more information call 1-800-668-2642.

Information on this release:

Bob Dugan
CMHC
613-748-4009
bdugan@cmhc-schl.gc.ca

For regional starts information contact:

Atlantic provinces:

Alex MacDonald
CMHC
902-426-8964
amacdona@cmhc-schl.gc.ca

Quebec:

Kevin Hughes
CMHC
514-283-4488
khughes@cmhc-schl.gc.ca

Ontario:

Ted Tsiakopoulos
CMHC
416-218-3407
ttsiakop@cmhc-schl.gc.ca

Prairie Provinces:

Richard Corriveau
CMHC
403-515-3005
rcorrive@cmhc-schl.gc.ca

British Columbia:

Carol Frketich
CMHC
604-737-4067
cfrketic@cmhc-schl.gc.ca

Housing Starts in Canada

Housing Starts, Actual and SAAR*

Actual
SAAR

May
2005
May
2006
April
2006
May
2006
Final
Preliminary
Final
Preliminary
Canada, all areas 21,805 20,473 217,900 216,800
Canada, rural areas 3,391 3,113 31,100 31,100
Canada, urban centres** 18,414 17,360 186,800 185,700
Canada, singles, urban centres 10,087 9,121 90,400 89,200
Canada, multiples, urban centres 8,327 8,239 96,400 96,500




Atlantic region, urban centres 1,086 795 8,700 7,600
Quebec, urban centres 3,743 3,748 36,200 37,400
Ontario, urban centres 6,496 6,078 61,400 65,300
Prairie region, urban centres 4,130 4,304 43,200 47,100
British Columbia, urban centres 2,959 2,435 37,300 28,300
Source: CMHC
*Seasonally adjusted annual rates
** Urban centres with a population of 10,000 persons and over.
Detailed data available upon request.

News source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)

 

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