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Housing Starts Move Higher in May

OTTAWA, Ontario, June 09, 2008 — The seasonally adjusted annual rate1 of housing starts was 221,300 units in May, up from 213,900 units in April, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

“Housing starts in May moved up from the strong level posted in April. Most of the increase reflected a rise in single starts, which in April had reached their lowest level since May 2001,” said Bob Dugan, Chief Economist at CMHC’s Market Analysis Centre.

In May the seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts edged up by 4.0 per cent to 192,800 units compared to April. Urban multiples rose 1.9 per cent to 116,100 in May, while singles increased 7.3 per cent to 76,700 units.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of urban starts went up in all regions of Canada, except Ontario, which saw a decrease of 7.4 per cent to 67,600 in May. Urban starts increased to 8,900 units in Atlantic Canada, 44,100 units in Quebec, 36,800 units in the Prairies, and 35,400 units in British Columbia. In terms of single urban starts, all regions were up in May.

Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 28,500 units in May2.

For the first five months of 2008, actual starts in rural and urban areas combined were up an estimated 0.7 per cent compared to the same period last year. Year-to-date actual starts in urban areas have increased by an estimated 5.6 per cent over the same period in 2007. Actual urban single starts for the five months of this year were 14.8 per cent lower than they were a year earlier, while multiple starts increased by 22.7 per cent over the same period.

1. All starts figures in this release, other than actual starts, are seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) — that is, monthly figures adjusted to remove normal seasonal variation and multiplied by 12 to reflect annual levels.

2. CMHC estimates the level of rural starts for each of the three months of the quarter, at the beginning of each quarter. During the last month of the quarter, CMHC conducts the survey in rural areas and revises the estimate.

As Canada’s national housing agency, CMHC draws on over 60 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally sustainable, and affordable homes — homes that will continue to create vibrant and healthy communities and cities across the country.

For more information, call 1-800-668-2642.

Information on this release:

Julie Girard
CMHC Media Relations
Tel.: 613-748-4684
Cell: 613-295-6330
jagirard@cmhc-schl.gc.ca

For regional starts information contact:

Atlantic provinces:

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

Quebec:

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

Ontario:

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

Prairie provinces:

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

British Columbia:

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

Housing Starts in Canada — All Areas

Housing Starts, Actual and SAAR*
Actual SAAR
May
2007
May
2008
April
2008
May
2008
Final Preliminary Final Preliminary
Canada, all areas 22,843 21,302 213,900 221,300
Canada, rural areas 3,469 2,931 28,500 28,500
Canada, urban centres** 19,374 18,371 185,400 192,800
Canada, singles, urban centres 9,319 7,963 71,500 76,700
Canada, multiples, urban centres 10,055 10,408 113,900 116,100
Atlantic region, urban centres 835 996 7,500 8,900
Quebec, urban centres 4,081 4,459 37,600 44,100
Ontario, urban centres 6,674 6,311 73,000 67,600
Prairie region, urban centres 4,786 3,518 32,400 36,800
British Columbia, urban centres 2,998 3,087 34,900 35,400

Source: CMHC
*Seasonally adjusted annual rates
** Urban centres with a population of 10,000 and over.
Detailed data available upon request.

News source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)

 

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