Housing continues to play a key role in economy

By Contributor
January 9th, 2012

 Housing-related spending accounts for more than 20 per cent of Canada’s gross domestic product, contributing about $330 billion to the Canadian economy in 2010 — up 7.1 per cent from $308 billion in 2009. This and other key findings are in the ninth annual Canadian Housing Observer, released today by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

“The Observer is unique in its in-depth review of housing conditions and trends, including developments — both domestic and international — that influence housing finance and housing market developments in Canada,” said Karen Kinsley, president of CMHC. “The Observer’s data provides insight into Canadian residential mortgage practices and housing market trends, while highlighting the importance of housing in this country.”

The 2011 Observer looks at other important housing data including:

  • The anticipated growth in the influence of seniors on the housing market in the future as their share of the population rises from about 14 per cent to almost 24 per cent by 2036;
  • How urban core housing need improved between 2002 and 2008 as 87 per cent of urban Canadian households either had, or could afford, acceptable housing in 2008;
  • How low interest rates, coupled with a small inventory of existing homes for sale, helped push the average MLS price up by 5.8 per cent in 2010 to $339,042; and
  • How condominiums accounted for one-third of all housing starts in major Canadian urban centres in 2010, compared with 29 per cent in 2009.

Online, users can access a broad range of statistical information on housing conditions from national, regional and local perspectives. New this year is the launch of additional online interactive tables featuring housing data at the local level for more than 100 selected municipalities.

The online publication and data are available at www.cmhc.ca/observer. Please refer to the attached table for a sample of the wide range of key national housing data available in the Observer.

As Canada’s national housing agency, CMHC draws on more than 65 years of experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally sustainable and affordable housing solutions. CMHC also provides reliable, impartial and up-to-date housing market reports, analysis and knowledge to support and assist consumers and the housing industry in making informed decisions.

For more information, call 1-800-668-2642.


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