Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

November 09, 2009 23:59 ET

Quebec housing starts in October

MONTREAL, Nov. 9 - According to the results of the latest monthly survey conducted by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), residential construction fell this past month in Quebec's centres with 10,000 or more inhabitants. In all, 3,065 dwellings were started in October 2009, compared to 4,144 a year earlier. As well, the seasonally adjusted annual rate of starts for this same month (31,900) was slower than the pace recorded in September (36,100).

In the census metropolitan areas (CMAs), housing starts fell in October (2,666 units in 2009, versus 3,226 in 2008). Most CMAs effectively sustained decreases during this period. The same held true for the larger census agglomerations (CAs), as three of the five CAs registered declines (for an overall drop of 64 per cent), mainly on account of the slowdown in activity in the multiple-family housing segment.

Single-detached home building declined by 15 per cent this past month, compared to October 2008, with half of the CMAs having recorded decreases. According to the survey results, the most notable drops were registered in Sherbrooke (-43 per cent) and Québec (-19 per cent). In the CMAs where single-detached home starts increased, Saguenay and Trois-Rivières stood out with gains of more than 20 per cent. The increase observed in Montréal, while smaller (+8 per cent), was still noteworthy, as this was the first gain recorded there in over a year. "Even though the pace of single-detached home construction is slowing, renewed activity in this segment was noted in October," said Kevin Hughes, Senior Economist at CMHC for Quebec.

Multiple-unit (semi-detached, row and apartment) housing starts, for their part, were down by 31 per cent in October from the same month last year. Once again, activity was down in most of Quebec's CMAs. In fact, only Saguenay and Trois-Rivières registered increases in this segment. In the other urban centres with 100,000 or more inhabitants, the decreases varied from one CMA to another (see table).

Still according to the survey results, starts in Quebec were down in all intended markets (freehold, rental and condominium), although the contraction was less significant in the freehold home segment.

From January to October 2009, housing starts in Quebec's centres with 10,000 or more inhabitants were down by 15 per cent, compared to the same period last year. This result reflected the declines in single-detached home building (-19 per cent) and, to a lesser extent, multiple-unit housing construction (-13 per cent).

As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 60 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally sustainable and affordable homes. CMHC also provides reliable, impartial and up-to-date housing market reports, analysis and knowledge to support and assist consumers and the housing industry in making vital decisions.


       Preliminary Results - Monthly Starts Survey - Province of Quebec
                        (centres with 10,000+ inhab.)
                                   October


                    Singles             Multiples              Total
                 2008    2009    %    2008    2009    %    2008    2009    %
                -------------------  -------------------  -------------------

    Centres with
     100,000+
     inhab.

    GATINEAU      123     110  -11     284     177  -38     407     287  -29
    MONTRÉAL      555     597    8   1,149   1,009  -12   1,704   1,606   -6
    QUÉBEC        180     145  -19     543     348  -36     723     493  -32
    SAGUENAY       40      51   28       4      22 (xxx)     44      73   66
    SHERBROOKE     74      42  -43     227      43  -81     301      85  -72
    TROIS-
     RIVIÈRES      21      26   24      26      96 (xxx)     47     122 (xxx)

    Subtotal
     (100,000+)   993     971   -2   2,233   1,695  -24   3,226   2,666  -17

    Centres with
     50,000 to
     99,999 inhab.

    DRUMMOND-
     VILLE         20      21    5      32      21  -34      52      42  -19
    GRANBY         20      17  -15     324      32  -90     344      49  -86
    SAINT-
     HYACINTHE      8       2  -75       5      12 (xxx)     13      14    8
    SAINT-JEAN-
     SUR-
     RICHELIEU     25      15  -40      12       6  -50      37      21  -43
    SHAWINIGAN      4      13 (xxx)     16      29   81      20      42 (xxx)

    Subtotal
     (50,000 to
     99,999)       77      68  -12     389     100  -74     466     168  -64

    Quebec
     (estimate
     10,000+)   1,300   1,104  -15   2,844   1,961  -31   4,144   3,065  -26


                             January to October

                    Singles             Multiples              Total
                 2008    2009    %    2008    2009    %    2008    2009    %
                -------------------  -------------------  -------------------

    Centres with
     100,000+
     inhab.

    GATINEAU      892     887   -1   1,838   1,777   -3   2,730   2,664   -2
    MONTRÉAL    5,780   4,383  -24  12,520  10,711  -14  18,300  15,094  -18
    QUÉBEC      1,741   1,475  -15   3,011   2,931   -3   4,752   4,406   -7
    SAGUENAY      357     295  -17     386     181  -53     743     476  -36
    SHERBROOKE    654     568  -13     672     718    7   1,326   1,286   -3
    TROIS-
     RIVIÈRES     307     292   -5     514     495   -4     821     787   -4

    Subtotal
     (100,000+) 9,731   7,900  -19  18,941  16,813  -11  28,672  24,713  -14

    Centres with
     50,000 to
     99,999
     inhab.

    DRUMMOND-
     VILLE        267     271    1     244     144  -41     511     415  -19
    GRANBY        272     198  -27     627     326  -48     899     524  -42
    SAINT-
     HYACINTHE     99      53  -46     114     162   42     213     215    1
    SAINT-JEAN-
     SUR-
     RICHELIEU    233     185  -21     219     126  -42     452     311  -31
    SHAWINIGAN     92      73  -21      46      89   93     138     162   17

    Subtotal
     (50,000 to
     99,999)      963     780  -19   1,250     847  -32   2,213   1,627  -26

    Quebec
     (estimate
     10,000+)  12,818  10,339  -19  21,753  18,891  -13  34,571  29,230  -15

    (xxx) Absolute value greater than 100%

Contact Information

  • Province: Kevin Hughes, Senior Economist, (514) 283-4488; Montréal: Astrid Joseph, Market Analyst, (514) 496-8564; Sherbrooke (Estrie): Francis Cortellino, Senior Market Analyst, (514) 283-8391; Québec: Élisabeth Koulouris, Senior Market Analyst, (418) 649-8098; Trois-Rivières (Mauricie): Marie-Élaine Denis, Market Analyst, (418) 649-8100; Gatineau (Outaouais, Abitibi): Patrice Tardif, Senior Market Analyst, (514) 283-2097; Saguenay: Sébastien Paquet-Poirier, Market Analyst, (418) 649-8102