Single Starts Continue to Support New Homes Market in Halifax

    HALIFAX, June 9 /CNW/ - Residential construction activity in the first
five months of 2008 dipped to levels just below those achieved during the same
period last year. Single starts continue to support the new home construction
market while multiple-residential construction remains significantly lower
than last year. According to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)
preliminary data(1) released today for Nova Scotia's urban areas with a
population over 10,000, there were 166 total housing starts last month
compared with 247 in May 2007. The 115 single-detached houses started last
month were 32 per cent higher than the 87 started in May 2007. Over the same
comparative period, multi-residential housing starts dropped by 68 per cent to
51 units last month.
    "Demand for single-detached homes continues to be strong in Metro
Halifax, despite rising costs", said Charlie Aucoin, Market Analyst with
CMHC's Atlantic Business Centre. "The need for energy efficiency is a
contributing factor to increased demand for new homes. This is becoming a high
priority with new home buyers and new or extensively renovated homes tend to
be more energy efficient than older homes", added Aucoin.
    In urban centres across Canada in May there were 18,371 total housing
starts, five per cent fewer than the 19,374 starts in May 2007. There were
7,963 single-detached housing starts across Canada last month, 15 per cent
fewer than the 9,319 single starts in May 2007 while the 10,408 multiple unit
housing starts across Canada last month represented a four per cent increase
from the 10,055 units started in May 2007.

    (1) Figures for the most recent month are preliminary and subject to
        revisions due to corrections or updates from quarterly enumeration or
        sampling results.

    (Ce document existe également en français.)

    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 or call 1 800 668-2642.

                      2008     2007                 YEAR-TO-DATE
                     --------------  % Change      --------------  % Change
                      MAY       MAY                2008      2007
          ALL URBAN CENTRES WITH POPULATIONS (greater than) 50,000
    Single            115        87      32.2%      429       302      42.1%
    Multiple           51       160     -68.1%      342       504     -32.1%
    TOTAL             166       247     -32.8%      771       806      -4.3%
    Single             17         6       (xx)       53        23       (xx)
    Multiple           17         0         -        25         8       (xx)
    TOTAL              34         6       (xx)       78        31       (xx)
          ALL URBAN CENTRES WITH  POPULATION (greater than) 10,000
    Single                      152     124    22.6%    599     422    41.9%
    Multiple                     70     178   -60.7%    458     547   -16.3%
    TOTAL                       222     302   -26.5%  1,057     969     9.1%
    Figures for the most recent month are preliminary and subject to
    revisions due to corrections or updates from quarterly enumeration or
    sampling results.

    (*)  Includes all centres with a total population of more than 10,000
         (Halifax CMA, Cape Breton RGM, Trur o CA, Kentville CA and
         New Glasgow CA).

    (xx) Indicates changes in excess of 100% which are not repor ted due to
         volatility resulting from small absolute numbers.

For further information:

For further information: Charlie Aucoin, Market Analyst, Canada Mortgage
and Housing Corporation, (902) 426-8465

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