Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

April 08, 2009 08:15 ET

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation: BC Housing Starts Down in First Quarter 2009

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - April 8, 2009) - New home construction in British Columbia slowed during the first quarter of 2009. Foundations were poured for 2,517 homes, compared to 8,532 homes during the first quarter of 2008. All types of housing, including single-detached and multiple-family homes, recorded fewer starts compared to year-earlier levels.

"Developers and homebuilders in BC are starting fewer new homes in response to a well-supplied resale market and weaker housing demand," noted Carol Frketich, CMHC BC Regional Economist. CMHC predicts that housing starts will decline in 2009 as the economy and job growth slow and an abundant supply of existing homes for sale reduces demand for new homes. "Existing home listings are trending lower," added Frketich, "but their supply remains at elevated levels. This means homebuyers have more homes to choose from at lower prices."

In British Columbia's urban areas, the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts decreased to 10,000 units in March, compared to 12,100 units in February. However, the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts for all areas in Canada was 154,700 units in March, up from 136,100 units in February.

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 - homes that will continue to create vibrant and healthy communities and cities across the country.

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Contact Information

  • Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
    Carol Frketich
    BC Regional Economist
    (604) 737-4067 or Cell: (604) 787-5598