Condo Markets in Montreal and Quebec City provide Accessible and Affordable Investment Opportunities



    Markets post moderate through 2012

    MONTREAL, March 26 /CNW/ - Condo markets in Montreal and Quebec City will
post moderate price growth through 2012, offering solid opportunities for
first-time homebuyers and feed the need for accessible, affordable housing in
Quebec, according to new data released today by Genworth Financial Canada, a
subsidiary of Genworth Financial, Inc. (NYSE:  GNW).
    Genworth's Winter 2008 Metropolitan Condominium Outlook reports that
Montreal's average resale condo price will rise from $175,555 in 2008 to
$203,591 by 2012, while in Quebec City resale condo prices are expected to
climb from an average $134,872 in 2008 to $154,304 by 2012. Prices will
increase, on average, 3.5 per cent a year in Quebec City and 3 per cent a year
in Montreal between 2008 and 2012.
    "Condos remain an affordable and attractive option for first-time
homebuyers. With the average price for a detached home in Quebec expected to
exceed $269,000 this year, the condo market remains an important entry point
for first-time homebuyers," said Peter Vukanovich, president of Genworth
Financial Canada.
    With projected declines in condo starts from historically high levels,
Montreal and Quebec City will witness a balancing of supply and demand in both
the resale and new condominium markets in the coming years. The continued
growth of the population aged 55 and over in both cities will help drive
demand for condos.
    The Genworth report, produced with the Conference Board of Canada,
concludes that "recently elevated volumes suggest condos are becoming
entrenched in most communities."
    "Canada's condo market remains a good opportunity for first-time
homebuyers, and innovative mortgage solutions are making that first-time
purchase more accessible and affordable than ever," said Vukanovich.
    "This report underscores the solid value condominiums in Montreal and
Quebec city offer to first-time homebuyers looking to get a foothold in
Canada's robust housing market. A condo offers an affordable opportunity to
begin to build equity in a home of your own," said Naureen Durack, Mortgage
Consultant, Multi-Prêts Hypotheques.
    The Winter 2008 Metropolitan Condominium Outlook reviewed resale condo
markets in Quebec City, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary, Edmonton,
Vancouver and Victoria. All eight markets registered moderate price growth in
2007 and are forecast to continue to have moderate growth this year and
through 2012.

    
    Average Resale Condo Price by City: Forecast

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    City      2007       2008       2009       2010       2011       2012
              Forecast   Forecast   Forecast   Forecast   Forecast   Forecast

              Percent-   Percent-   Percent-   Percent-   Percent-   Percent-
              age        age        age        age        age        age
              Increase   Increase   Increase   Increase   Increase   Increase
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Quebec    $130,133   $134,872   $139,485   $144,898   $149,623   $154,304
     City
              4.7        3.6        3.4        3.9        3.3        3.1
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Montreal  $175,555   $182,700   $189,571   $195,040   $199,785   $203,591

              2.9        4.1        3.8        2.9        2.4        1.9
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ottawa    $185,377   $188,276   $194,778   $201,372   $208,266   $215,231

              5.7        1.6        3.5        3.4        3.4        3.3
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Toronto   $229,708   $236,351   $242,254   $250,623   $259,507   $268,488

              7.6        2.9        2.5        3.5        3.5        3.5
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Calgary   $275,633   $286,896   $295,248   $303,768   $312,129   $320,728

              22.2       4.1        2.9        2.9        2.8        2.8
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Edmonton  $235,881   $250,873   $255,193   $260,748   $267,116   $274,333

              43.2       6.4        1.7        2.2        2.4        2.7
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Vancouver $328,158   $346,713   $355,184   $366,348   $377,932   $389,344

              11.9       5.7        2.4        3.1        3.2        3.0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Victoria  $272,061   $282,619   $289,399   $297,065   $305,641   $314,298

              9.4        3.9        2.4        2.6        2.9        2.8
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

    Sources: The Conference Board of Canada; Canada Mortgage and Housing
    Corporation; Canadian Real Estate Association. Note: For Montreal,
    Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver, resale apartments classified as condos
    were included; for Calgary and Edmonton, data includes condos that are
    single-detached units, semi-detached units, townhouse/row units, and
    apartments that are classified as condos.

    The full Winter 2008 Metropolitan Condominium Outlook is available at
www.genworth.ca.

    About Genworth Financial Canada:

    Genworth Financial Canada, The Homeownership Company, works with lenders,
mortgage brokers, real estate agents and builders to make homeownership more
affordable and accessible throughout Canada. The company combines global
experience in mortgage insurance with technological and service leadership to
deliver innovation to the mortgage marketplace.
    Genworth Financial Canada issues reports on Canada's housing market and
Canada's condo market in winter and summer; all in conjunction with the
Conference Board of Canada. Our intention is to educate and provide useful
information to Canadian consumers, homeowners, future first-time homebuyers
and governments. We believe homeowners and homebuyers require up-to-date
information about Canada's housing market to make informed decisions about
homeownership, for many the most important investment of their lifetime.
Genworth Financial Canada also listens to homebuyers about their challenges
and concerns, to make us better informed about how we can offer products that
help Canadians realize the dream of homeownership.
    Additional information about Genworth Financial Canada is available at
www.genworth.ca or through mortgage lenders.

    About Genworth Financial

    Genworth Financial, Inc. (NYSE:  GNW) is a leading public Fortune 500
global financial security company. Genworth has more than $114 billion in
assets and employs approximately 7,000 people in 25 countries. Its products
and services help meet the investment, protection, retirement and lifestyle
needs of over 15 million customers. Genworth operates through three segments:
Retirement and Protection, International and U.S. Mortgage Insurance. Its
products and services are offered through financial intermediaries, advisors,
independent distributors and sales specialists. Genworth Financial, which
traces its roots back to 1871, became a public company in 2004 and is
headquartered in Richmond, Virginia. For more information, visit Genworth.com.





For further information:

For further information: or to arrange interviews: Sherri Leclair,
Genworth Financial Canada, Marketing/Communications Leader, (905) 287-5408,
sherri.leclair@genworth.com


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