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Housing starts climb in August, led by Montreal's 283% increase


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Housing starts climb in August, led by Montreal's 283% increase

 

Foundations poured for 1,878 homes. Construction of condos rises highest, while rental properties fall vs. last year

 

 

MARY LAMEY, The Gazette

 

Published: 6 hours ago

Housing starts rose in August for the fifth consecutive month in greater Montreal, though market demand for rental housing showed signs of cooling, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. reported yesterday.

 

A total of 1,878 dwellings were started, a seven-per-cent increase over the month a year earlier.

 

The number of condominium starts increased by 65 per cent, while the number of single-family homes rose by 20 per cent. Rental starts fell by 22 per cent to 692 units, compared with 890 a year earlier.

 

Montreal had less new construction than other parts of the metropolitan census area, but still managed the biggest percentage gain for the month, with a 283-per-cent increase in starts.

 

That was powered by the start of work on 413 rental units, compared with 20 a year earlier, and by 252 condo starts, vs. 118 last year.

 

In contrast, Laval and the North Shore construction fell by 29 per cent to 734 units.

 

The drop was most noticeable on the rental front, where the number of new units underway was 155, vs. 618 a year before. Those results were distorted by the start of work on a 500-unit rental project for seniors in August 2006.

 

Construction of single and attached homes and condominiums all rose.

On the South Shore, construction declined by 35 per cent for the month, including a 91-per-cent drop in the biggest city, Longueuil, where there wasn't a single rental or attached home start and where only five single-family homes and 14 condominium units were started. The 19 starts for Longueuil compared with 200 a year ago.

 

In Vaudreuil-Soulanges, construction rose by 144 per cent, totaling 100 new units.

 

CMHC considers a project started when the concrete foundation is poured.

 

For the year to date, Montreal is 27 per cent ahead of last year, while Laval and the North Shore are down seven per cent. The South Shore is up eight per cent, and Vaudreuil-Soulanges is up seven per cent.

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