Steady Growth Forecast for Calgary and Edmonton Condo Markets



    Genworth Report: Booming economies and demand from baby boomers will
    support modest growth through 2011

    CALGARY, Sept. 12 /CNW/ - Demand from baby boomers over age 55 - many
downsizing from "empty nest" homes - will support long-term growth in condo
markets in Calgary and Edmonton, according to new data released today by
Genworth Financial Canada, a subsidiary of Genworth Financial, Inc.
(NYSE:  GNW).
    Genworth's Summer 2007 Metropolitan Condominium Outlook forecasts the
sizzling condominium markets in Calgary and Edmonton to post average annual
price increases of about 4.6 and 4.1 per cent, respectively, from 2008 to
2011, as increased condo supply helps resale markets return to a more balanced
state. By 2011, Calgary's average resale condo price will reach $322,838,
while the Edmonton average will reach $263,856 in the same period.
    Last year, with demand exceeding supply, condo starts jumped 52 per cent
in Calgary and 11 per cent in Edmonton, while prices for resale condos rose
47.9 percent in Calgary and 25.8 percent in Edmonton. Robust economies in both
cities continue to drive condo sales in the short term, with more moderate
growth expected beyond 2008.
    "While these cities have younger populations than others in Canada, their
boomer populations have grown rapidly over the past 10 years," said Peter
Vukanovich, president Genworth Financial Canada. "In Edmonton, the over 55
segment makes up nearly 21 percent of the population, and it's 18.3 percent in
Calgary. Boomer population growth will continue to drive long-term demand for
condos, reassuring homebuyers who might have worried about a future condo
downturn."
    Census figures release in July by Statistics Canada show the number of
Canadians aged 55 to 64, many of whom are approaching retirement, is at a
record high of 3.7 million.
    As the markets in Alberta's two largest cities return to a more balanced
state, developers will continue to respond to the changing housing demands of
baby boomers.
    "We've recently experienced a 'boom' in our housing and condo market, but
strategically speaking we, in the longer term, look to support the lifestyle
choices that boomers will increasingly be making in the Alberta marketplace,"
said Greg Christenson, president of Christenson Developments Ltd. "Empty
nesters who are downsizing are increasingly finding the condo lifestyle
attractive."
    The Summer 2007 Metropolitan Condominium Outlook reviewed resale condo
markets in Quebec City, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary, Edmonton,
Vancouver and Victoria. All eight markets registered price growth in 2006 and
are forecast to continue to grow this year and through 2011.

    
    Average Resale Condo Price by City: Forecast
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    City            2007         2008         2009         2010         2011
                Forecast     Forecast     Forecast     Forecast     Forecast
              Percentage   Percentage   Percentage   Percentage   Percentage
                Increase     Increase     Increase     Increase     Increase
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Quebec      $132,470     $135,218     $139,210     $143,645     $148,131
    City             6.5          2.1          3.0          3.2          3.1
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Montreal    $179,358     $184,875     $191,316     $198,250     $205,351
                     5.2          3.1          3.5          3.6          3.6
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ottawa      $185,272     $189,616     $196,100     $202,378     $208,926
                     5.6          2.3          3.4          3.2          3.2
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Toronto     $222,893     $229,205     $236,270     $244,973     $254,049
                     4.4          2.8          3.1          3.7          3.7
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Calgary     $270,169     $293,335     $306,722     $315,684     $322,838
                    19.8          8.6          4.6          2.9          2.3
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Edmonton    $224,621     $234,878     $248,795     $257,958     $263,586
                    36.4          4.6          5.9          3.7          2.2
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Vancouver   $314,471     $327,163     $341,116     $352,800     $365,491
                     7.2          4.0          4.3          3.4          3.6
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Victoria    $264,471     $273,908     $285,071     $293,790     $302,603
                     6.3          3.6          4.1          3.1          3.0
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Sources: The Conference Board of Canada; Canada Mortgage and Housing
    Corporation; Canadian Real Estate Association.
    

    The Genworth report also noted that condos are becoming a more attractive
option for first-time homebuyers, given the rising price of new detached homes
in Canada. As reported by Genworth's Summer 2007 Metropolitan Housing Outlook,
new homes are forecast to average $378,000 in Canada this year, a six per cent
annual increase.
    "We work with our lender partners and mortgage professionals to provide
low-down payment mortgages for these first-time buyers," said Vukanovich. "The
affordable monthly payments allow them to become homeowners and start building
equity sooner."
    The full Summer 2007 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 in
spring, summer and fall; and on 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 is a leading insurance holding company, serving the lifestyle
protection, retirement income, investment and mortgage insurance needs of more
than 15 million customers. It has operations in 27 countries. For more
information, visit www.genworth.com.





For further information:

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

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