Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

February 19, 2009 23:59 ET

Housing Starts to Decline in 2009

HALIFAX, Feb. 19 - According to Canada Mortgage and Housing
Corporation's (CMHC's) latest outlook, housing starts are forecast to decline
in 2009 in Atlantic Canada but rise marginally in 2010. Stability in singles
activity in 2008 will be replaced by a slowdown in activity in 2009, as
economic uncertainty continues to impact the housing sector. As well, the
anticipated increase in multiple starts in 2008 did not materialize.

The expectations for 2009 have also been reduced, as the appetite for
development moderates in the current economic environment. "The entire region
will face challenges in 2009, as weakness is expected to prevail in all four
Atlantic Provinces," said Alex MacDonald, regional economist, with CMHC's
Atlantic Business Centre. The housing sector is expected to show positive
growth in 2010, as consumers begin to regain their footing and a recovery
begins to take hold as a result of additional fiscal and monetary stimulus.

In 2009, existing home sales activity is expected to decline across the
region. The overall level of sales activity will be impacted by softness in
employment and economic growth. There is some downside risk to the forecast,
as consumers remain cautious and income growth is not expected to be as strong
in 2009. As well, global factors could continue to affect the outlook in 2009.

Multiple starts are expected to decline in 2009, but row housing starts
will remain popular in some urban centres across Atlantic Canada, as the
current price of housing will continue to shift some consumers away from more
costly single-detached units. Higher prices will also continue to ease demand
for single starts in 2009.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has been Canada's national
housing agency for more than 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, visit www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca or call 1 800 668-2642.



Atlantic Housing Market Outlook(1)

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Total Housing Starts 2008 2009 2010
Actual Forecast Forecast
-----------------------------------------
New Brunswick 4,274 3,475 3,650
Forecast Ranges 2,900-3,700 2,750-4,000
Nova Scotia 3,982 3,675 3,900
Forecast Ranges 3,200-4,100 3,000-4,400
Prince Edward Island 712 575 625
Forecast Ranges 525-600 575-650
Newfoundland and Labrador 3,261 2,675 2,775
Forecast Ranges 2,400-3,200 2,100-3,000
Atlantic Region Total 12,229 10,400 10,950
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Forecast Ranges 9,025-11,600 8,425-12,050
-------------------------------------------------------------------------


Atlantic Housing Market Outlook(1)

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-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total MLS® Sales(2) 2008 2009 2010
Actual Forecast Forecast
-----------------------------------------
New Brunswick 7,555 6,500 6,750
Forecast Ranges 6,000-7,500 5,800-7,250
Nova Scotia 10,874 9,500 9,850
Forecast Ranges 8,750-10,175 8,500-10,500
Prince Edward Island 1,413 1,300 1,325
Forecast Ranges 1,200-1,350 1,250-1,450
Newfoundland and Labrador 4,695 4,000 4,200
Forecast Ranges 3,700-4,300 3,750-4,400
Atlantic Region Total 24,538 21,300 22,125
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Forecast Ranges 19,650-23,325 19,300-23,600
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

SOURCE: CMHC Housing Market Outlook, Atlantic Highlights, First Quarter
2009.

(1) The forecasts included in the Housing Market Outlook are based on
information available as of January 27. Where applicable, forecast
ranges are also presented in order to reflect economic uncertainty.
(2) The term MLS® stands for Multiple Listing Service and is a
registered trademark of the Canadian Real Estate Association
(CREA).(1)


Atlantic Housing Market Outlook(1)

-------------------------------------------------------------------------
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Average MLS® Price ($)(2) 2008 2009 2010
Actual Forecast Forecast
-----------------------------------------
New Brunswick $145,762 $146,500 $149,000
Forecast Ranges 145,000- 146,000-
151,500 153,000
Nova Scotia $189,902 $191,000 $194,500
Forecast Ranges 188,000- 189,000-
196,000 198,000
Prince Edward Island $139,944 $140,250 $141,500
Forecast Ranges 139,000- 140,000-
144,000 145,000
Newfoundland and Labrador $178,477 $179,500 $182,500
Forecast Ranges 178,000- 178,500-
187,500 190,000
Atlantic Region Total $171,247 $172,163 $175,167
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Forecast Ranges 169,995- 170,864-
177,115 179,428
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

SOURCE: CMHC Housing Market Outlook, Atlantic Highlights, First Quarter
2009.

(1) The forecasts included in the Housing Market Outlook are based on
information available as of January 27. Where applicable, forecast
ranges are also presented in order to reflect economic uncertainty.
(2) The term MLS® stands for Multiple Listing Service and is a
registered trademark of the Canadian Real Estate Association
(CREA)(1).

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