Quebec housing starts decline in September



    MONTREAL, Oct. 8 /CNW Telbec/ - According to the latest monthly starts
survey conducted by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC),
residential construction registered a decrease this past month in centres with
10,000 or more inhabitants across Quebec. In all, 3,575 housing units were
started in September 2008, compared to 5,442 one year earlier, for a decrease
of 34 per cent. Still, the pace of construction (as measured by the seasonally
adjusted annual rate of starts) remained stable in relation to August.
    Just like in the months of July and August, starts fell this past month
in the census metropolitan areas (CMAs) (2,947 units in 2008, compared to
4,769 in 2007) and the larger census agglomerations (206 units in 2008, versus
304 in 2007).
    Among the CMAs, Montréal registered the greatest decrease, as starts
there fell from 3,492 units in 2007 to 1,670 in 2008, for a drop of 52 per
cent. The multiple-family (semi-detached, row and apartment) housing segment
was in fact mainly responsible for this decline. "The volume of construction
in the Montréal CMA was unusually high in September 2007, as a result of
several major projects, particularly retirement homes, exceptionally getting
under way at the same time. The number of starts recorded this past month was
effectively in line with the average level of activity for the last five years
and was therefore not in any way surprising," said Kevin Hughes, Regional
Economist at CMHC.
    In the other CMAs, increases in starts were observed, except in Québec
(-39 per cent) and Sherbrooke (-20 per cent). In the case of Québec, the
decrease recorded this past month was also due to the start of construction on
a retirement home during the same period last year. It was in the Saguenay CMA
that construction rose the most (by more than 100 per cent), followed by
Trois-Rivières (+41 per cent) and Gatineau (+5 per cent). It should be noted
that the strong gain posted in Saguenay resulted from the start-up of a
retirement home with over 200 units.
    In the larger census agglomerations (50,000 to 99,999 population),
housing starts also decreased this past month (- 32 per cent).
Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu stood out, with a drop of 64 per cent. The monthly
survey revealed that multi-family housing construction was on the decline in
these centres.
    For the first nine months of the year, starts in centres with 10,000 or
more inhabitants were down by 4 per cent, compared to the same period last
year. This result reflects activity in the single detached (- 4 per cent) and
multi-family (- 3 per cent) market segments.
    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.

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

                                             September

                                Single-Detached              Others
                           2007     2008        %       2007     2008      %
                        -------------------------  -------------------------

    Centres with
     100,000+ inhab.
     (September)

    GATINEAU                100      106        6        413      434      5
    MONTREAL                619      496      -20      2,873    1,174    -59
    QUEBEC                  167      167        0        375      161    -57
    SAGUENAY                 49       29      -41         24      241   (xxx)
    SHERBROOKE               67       58      -13         50       36    -28
    TROIS-RIVIERES           24       17      -29          8       28   (xxx)

    Subtotal
     (100,000+)           1,026      873      -15      3,743    2,074    -45

    Centres with
     50,000 to 99,999
     inhab.(September)

    DRUMMONDVILLE            20       35       75         40       16    -60
    GRANBY                   31       44       42         48       47     -2
    SAINT-HYACINTHE(*)        9        6      -33         29        6    -79
    SHAWINIGAN                8        9       13          0        0      0
    SAINT-JEAN-SUR-
     RICHELIEU               23       19      -17         96       24    -75

    Subtotal
     (50,000 to 99,999)      91      113       24        213       93    -56

    Centres with
     10,000 to 49,999
     inhab.(3rd Quart.)

    ALMA                     29       34       17         12       22     83
    AMOS                      7       10       43          7        0   -100
    BAIE-COMEAU               6        9       50          0        0      0
    COWANSVILLE               8        8        0          2       25   (xxx)
    DOLBEAU-MISTASSINI        3       12     (xxx)         0        0      0
    GASPE                    20       59     (xxx)         0        0      0
    JOLIETTE                 63       46      -27         33       71   (xxx)
    LA TUQUE                  4        1      -75          0        0      0
    LACHUTE                  19       18       -5         27       17    -37
    LES-ILES-DE-LA-
     MADELEINE               na       na       na         na       na     na
    MATANE                    6        9       50          6        0   -100
    MONT-LAURIER             na       15       na         na        2     na
    MONTMAGNY                10        7      -30          0        0      0
    PREVOST                  na       25       na         na        0     na
    RAWDON                   na       20       na         na        2     na
    RIMOUSKI                 40       45       13          4       46   (xxx)
    RIVIERE-DU-LOUP          29       27       -7          0       36   (xxx)
    ROBERVAL                  5       15     (xxx)         2        2      0
    ROUYN-NORANDA            44       31      -30          5        2    -60
    SAINTE-ADELE             na       28       na         na       13     na
    SAINTE-MARIE              6       11       83         12       88   (xxx)
    SAINTE-SOPHIE            na       46       na         na       18     na
    SAINT-FELICIEN            8        5      -38         24        0   -100
    SAINT-GEORGES            29       27       -7         16       24     50
    SAINT-LIN-
     LAURENTIDES             90       70      -22          2       10   (xxx)
    SALABERRY-DE-
     VALLEYFIELD             25       21      -16         16       45   (xxx)
    SEPT-ILES                25       18      -28         30       11    -63
    SOREL-TRACY              23       29       26         52       22    -58
    THETFORD MINES           11       22      100          0       15   (xxx)
    VAL-D'OR                 19       31       63         14        0   -100
    VICTORIAVILLE            54       52       -4         55       76     38

    Subtotal(10,000
     to 49,999)(*)          583      751       29        319      547     71

    Quebec(estimate
     10,000+)             1,308    1,213       -7      4,134    2,362    -43

    (xxx) Absolute value greater than 100%

    (*) Data adjusted to reflect geographical definitions of the 2006 census.
        Les-Iles-de-la-Madeleine, Mont-Laurier, Prévost, Rawdon, Sainte-
        Adèle, and Sainte-Sophie now belong to the 10 000 to 49 999
        population category.


                                  September

                                    Total
                           2007     2008        %
                        -------------------------

    Centres with
     100,000+ inhab.
     (September)

    GATINEAU                513      540        5
    MONTREAL              3,492    1,670      -52
    QUEBEC                  542      328      -39
    SAGUENAY                 73      270     (xxx)
    SHERBROOKE              117       94      -20
    TROIS-RIVIERES           32       45       41

    Subtotal(100,000+)    4,769    2,947      -38

    Centres with
     50,000 to 99,999
     inhab.(September)

    DRUMMONDVILLE            60       51      -15
    GRANBY                   79       91       15
    SAINT-HYACINTHE(*)       38       12      -68
    SHAWINIGAN                8        9       13
    SAINT-JEAN-SUR-
     RICHELIEU              119       43      -64

    Subtotal(50,000
     to 99,999)             304      206      -32

    Centres with
     10,000 to 49,999
     inhab.(3rd Quart.)

    ALMA                     41       56       37
    AMOS                     14       10      -29
    BAIE-COMEAU               6        9       50
    COWANSVILLE              10       33     (xxx)
    DOLBEAU-MISTASSINI        3       12     (xxx)
    GASPE                    20       59     (xxx)
    JOLIETTE                 96      117       22
    LA TUQUE                  4        1      -75
    LACHUTE                  46       35      -24
    LES-ILES-DE-LA-
     MADELEINE               na       na       na
    MATANE                   12        9      -25
    MONT-LAURIER             na       17       na
    MONTMAGNY                10        7      -30
    PREVOST                  na       25       na
    RAWDON                   na       22       na
    RIMOUSKI                 44       91     (xxx)
    RIVIERE-DU-LOUP          29       63     (xxx)
    ROBERVAL                  7       17     (xxx)
    ROUYN-NORANDA            49       33      -33
    SAINTE-ADELE             na       41       na
    SAINTE-MARIE             18       99     (xxx)
    SAINTE-SOPHIE            na       64       na
    SAINT-FELICIEN           32        5      -84
    SAINT-GEORGES            45       51       13
    SAINT-LIN-
     LAURENTIDES             92       80      -13
    SALABERRY-DE-
     VALLEYFIELD             41       66       61
    SEPT-ILES                55       29      -47
    SOREL-TRACY              75       51      -32
    THETFORD MINES           11       37     (xxx)
    VAL-D'OR                 33       31       -6
    VICTORIAVILLE           109      128       17

    Subtotal(10,000
     to 49,999)(*)          902    1,298       44

    Quebec(estimate
     10,000+)             5,442    3,575      -34

    (xxx) Absolute value greater than 100%

    (*) Data adjusted to reflect geographical definitions of the 2006 census.
        Les-Iles-de-la-Madeleine, Mont-Laurier, Prévost, Rawdon, Sainte-
        Adèle, and Sainte-Sophie now belong to the 10 000 to 49 999
        population category.



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

                                       January to September


                           Single-Detached                Others
                           2007     2008        %     2007     2008        %
                        -------------------------  -------------------------

    Centres with
     100,000+ inhab.

    GATINEAU                771      769        0    1,505    1,554        3
    MONTREAL              6,028    5,225      -13   12,045   11,371       -6
    QUEBEC                1,733    1,561      -10    2,267    2,468        9
    SAGUENAY                283      317       12      273      382       40
    SHERBROOKE              482      580       20      527      445      -16
    TROIS-RIVIERES          291      286       -2      440      488       11

    Subtotal (100,000+)   9,588    8,738       -9   17,057   16,708       -2

    Centres with 50,000
     to 99,999 inhab.

    DRUMMONDVILLE           245      247        1      536      212      -60
    GRANBY                  262      252       -4      220      303       38
    SAINT-HYACINTHE(*)       64       91       42      165      109      -34
    SHAWINIGAN               90       88       -2       14       30     (xxx)
    SAINT-JEAN-SUR-
     RICHELIEU              378      208      -45      522      207      -60

    Subtotal
    (50,000 to 99,999)    1,039      886      -15    1,457      861      -41

    Centres with 10,000
     to 49,999 inhab.

    ALMA                     49       92       88       26       47       81
    AMOS                     13       28     (xxx)       7        4      -43
    BAIE-COMEAU              11       17       55        0        0        0
    COWANSVILLE              27       32       19        5       29     (xxx)
    DOLBEAU-MISTASSINI       10       31     (xxx)       4       12     (xxx)
    GASPE                    51       85       67        2       26     (xxx)
    JOLIETTE                181      197        9      105      115       10
    LA TUQUE                  4        4        0        0       17     (xxx)
    LACHUTE                  35       59       69       34       50       47
    LES-ILES-DE-LA-
     MADELEINE               na        7       na       na        0       na
    MATANE                   23       21       -9        6        2      -67
    MONT-LAURIER             na       34       na       na        2       na
    MONTMAGNY                22       12      -45        3        6      100
    PREVOST                  na       98       na       na        0       na
    RAWDON                   na       51       na       na        8       na
    RIMOUSKI                 86      112       30       52      132     (xxx)
    RIVIERE-DU-LOUP          61       58       -5       12       46      -59
    ROBERVAL                 10       16       60        2        4      100
    ROUYN-NORANDA            93       82      -12        5        4      -20
    SAINTE-ADELE             na       66       na       na       27       na
    SAINTE-MARIE             21       27       29       62      108       74
    SAINTE-SOPHIE            na      115       na       na       46       na
    SAINT-FELICIEN           24       23       -4       24        0     -100
    SAINT-GEORGES            90       79      -12       76       88       16
    SAINT-LIN-
     LAURENTIDES            190      161      -15       13       30     (xxx)
    SALABERRY-DE-
     VALLEYFIELD             60       58       -3       94      194     (xxx)
    SEPT-ILES                47       33      -30       32       11      -66
    SOREL-TRACY              86       73      -15       93       90       -3
    THETFORD MINES           23       38       65        0       17     (xxx)
    VAL-D'OR                 72       64      -11       14        3      -79
    VICTORIAVILLE           127      120       -6      199      222       12

    Subtotal (10,000
     to 49,999)(*)        1,420    1,894       33      970    1,340       38

    Quebec (estimate
     10,000+)            12,047   11,518       -4   19,484   18,909       -3

    (xxx) Absolute value greater than 100%

    (*) Data adjusted to reflect geographical definitions of the 2006 census.
        Les-Iles-de-la-Madeleine, Mont-Laurier, Prévost, Rawdon, Sainte-
        Adèle, and Sainte-Sophie now belong to the 10 000 to 49 999
        population category.


                            January to September


                               Total
                           2007     2008        %
                        -------------------------

    Centres with
     100,000+ inhab.

    GATINEAU              2,276    2,323        2
    MONTREAL             18,073   16,596       -8
    QUEBEC                4,000    4,029        1
    SAGUENAY                556      699       26
    SHERBROOKE            1,009    1,025        2
    TROIS-RIVIERES          731      774        6

    Subtotal (100,000+)  26,645   25,446       -4

    Centres with 50,000
     to 99,999 inhab.

    DRUMMONDVILLE           781      459      -41
    GRANBY                  482      555       15
    SAINT-HYACINTHE(*)      229      200      -13
    SHAWINIGAN              104      118       13
    SAINT-JEAN-SUR-
     RICHELIEU              900      415      -54

    Subtotal
    (50,000 to 99,999)    2,496    1,747      -30

    Centres with 10,000
     to 49,999 inhab.

    ALMA                     75      139       85
    AMOS                     20       32       60
    BAIE-COMEAU              11       17       55
    COWANSVILLE              32       61       91
    DOLBEAU-MISTASSINI       14       43     (xxx)
    GASPE                    53      111     (xxx)
    JOLIETTE                286      312        9
    LA TUQUE                  4       21     (xxx)
    LACHUTE                  69      109       58
    LES-ILES-DE-LA-
     MADELEINE               na        7       na
    MATANE                   29       23      -21
    MONT-LAURIER             na       36       na
    MONTMAGNY                25       18      -28
    PREVOST                  na       98       na
    RAWDON                   na       59       na
    RIMOUSKI                138      244       77
    RIVIERE-DU-LOUP         173      104      -40
    ROBERVAL                 12       20       67
    ROUYN-NORANDA            98       86      -12
    SAINTE-ADELE             na       93       na
    SAINTE-MARIE             83      135       63
    SAINTE-SOPHIE            na      161       na
    SAINT-FELICIEN           48       23      -52
    SAINT-GEORGES           166      167        1
    SAINT-LIN-
     LAURENTIDES            203      191       -6
    SALABERRY-DE-
     VALLEYFIELD            154      252       64
    SEPT-ILES                79       44      -44
    SOREL-TRACY             179      163       -9
    THETFORD MINES           23       55     (xxx)
    VAL-D'OR                 86       67      -22
    VICTORIAVILLE           326      342        5

    Subtotal (10,000
     to 49,999)(*)        2,390    3,234       35

    Quebec (estimate
     10,000+)            31,531   30,427       -4

    (xxx) Absolute value greater than 100%

    (*) Data adjusted to reflect geographical definitions of the 2006 census.
        Les-Iles-de-la-Madeleine, Mont-Laurier, Prévost, Rawdon, Sainte-
        Adèle, and Sainte-Sophie now belong to the 10 000 to 49 999
        population category.
    




For further information:

For further information: Province of Quebec: Kevin Hughes, Senior
Economist, (514) 283-4488; Montréal: Sandra Girard, Senior Market Analyst,
(514) 283-5075; Sherbrooke (Estrie): Francis Cortellino, Market Analyst, (514)
895-2565; Québec: Marie-Elaine Denis, Market Analyst, (418) 649-8100;
Trois-Rivières (Mauricie): Marie-Elaine Denis, Market Analyst, (418) 649-8100;
Gatineau (Outaouais, Abitibi): Patrice Tardif, Senior Market Analyst, (514)
238-8696; Saguenay: Frédéric Brie, Market Analyst, (418) 649-8102


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