Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

August 15, 2007 11:30 ET

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation: Renovation Spending Approaches $7 Billion

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Aug. 15, 2007) - Renovation spending in British Columbia will approach $7 billion next year, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation's (CMHC) latest housing outlook report.

British Columbians spent $5.8 billion on renovations, repairs and maintenance last year, a 10.5 per cent increase from 2005. This upward trend in home improvement expenditures will continue through 2008 spurred by high levels of home resales and homeowners desire to participate in trends in home improvement.

"Much of the renovation activity planned or underway in the province is tied to people fixing up their homes for sale or personalizing a recently purchased home," noted Carol Frketich, CMHC's BC Regional Economist. "The rising cost of new housing will encourage some people to upgrade their current home in lieu of buying new, further strengthening the renovation market. As well, new styles of fixtures and renovation products, including those designed to increase energy efficiency, will fuel spending on renovations, alterations and repairs."

CMHC's Housing Market Outlook, British Columbia Region Highlights released today, also includes forecasts for existing home sales and prices, as well as new home construction. CMHC expects housing activity to continue at high levels, supported by income growth, a tight labour market and high levels of consumer confidence. Existing home sales, as measured by the Multiple Listing Service (MLS®), will total 97,250 resales this year, and decline to 92,500 resales next year.

Growth in home prices, while still strong, will slow, as more listings come on the market and homeownership demand is tempered by rising mortgage rates. The BC average MLS® price will reach $436,600 in 2007, an 11.7 per cent increase compared to last year.

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.ca or call 1 800 668-2642.

The Housing Market Outlook, British Columbia Region Highlights report is available on the CMHC Web site: http://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca.

To view the tables accompanying this press release please click on the following link: http://www.ccnmatthews.com/docs/cmhc0815.pdf

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