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Housing Starts to Moderate in 2009

OTTAWA, Ontario, October 30, 2008 — New home construction will moderate from historically high levels, to reach just under 178,000 units in 2009, a level that is consistent with demographic fundamentals, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s (CMHC) fourth quarter Housing Market Outlook, Canada Edition report.

“High employment levels, rising incomes and low mortgage rates have continued to provide a solid foundation for healthy housing markets this year,” said Bob Dugan, Chief Economist for CMHC. “Housing starts will moderate to 212,200 units in 2008 and 177,975 units in 2009.”

Existing home sales, as measured by the Multiple Listing Service (MLS®)1, which reached a record level of 523,701 sales in 2007, will moderate in 2008 to 452,225 units. In 2009, MLS® sales will move to 433,375 units. Despite a moderation in MLS® sales, demand for existing homes will remain strong by historical standards. With housing markets having become balanced across Canada, the rate of growth in the average MLS® price will moderate. Average prices will reach $306,500 in 2008 and $306,700 in 2009.

As Canada’s national housing agency, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) draws on more than 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

1 The term MLS® stands for Multiple Listing Service and is a registered trademark of the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA).

Information on this release:

Julie Girard
Media Relations

National Housing Outlook

Key Housing Market Indicators

Total housing starts (units) 228,343 212,188 177,975
Total single-detached houses 118,917 94,263 83,600
Total multiple housing units 109,426 117,925 94,375
Total MLS® sales2 523,701 452,225 433,375
Average MLS® selling price ($) 305,707 306,500 306,700

Provincial Housing Outlook

Total Housing Starts

Newfoundland and Labrador 2,649 3,100 2,725
Prince Edward Island 750 700 600
Nova Scotia 4,750 4,300 3,725
New Brunswick 4,242 4,200 3,625
Quebec 48,553 47,940 42,000
Ontario 68,123 74,450 62,000
Manitoba 5,738 5,450 5,200
Saskatchewan 6,007 6,500 4,900
Alberta 48,336 29,750 24,000
British Columbia 39,195 35,800 29,200

SOURCE: CMHC Housing Market Outlook, Canada Edition, Fourth Quarter 2008.

2 The term MLS® stands for Multiple Listing Service and is a registered trademark of the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). Data are for 10 provinces.

News source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)


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