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					Quebec mortgage rates update
An increase in Quebec births could lead to parents upgrading
According to recent data released by the Institut de la statistique du Quebec, births in the province have risen significantly in the past year. After increasing by almost 8% in 2006, it is expected that an additional 85,000 births will be recorded in 2007, a 3% rise. It could be assumed that that some of these new parents could look at upgrading to larger houses. The CMHC reports that while more formal research needs to be done, this assumption is supported by both resale and new home statistics. In fact, sales and starts of family homes showed notable increase in regions where the birth rate had recently jumped.

Quebec housing demand to remain strong in 2008
The conditions that sustained Quebec home buying in 2007 will continue to fuel demand in the next two years, and translate into 46,500 starts in 2008 and 45,000 the following year. Quebecs economy will be supported by strong domestic spending and rising disposable income, which will support housing demand. Again this year, the weak spot will be the export sector which will continue to struggle with the current exchange rate and growing foreign competition. This will be especially true of the manufacturing sector. As a result, GDP will grow in the vicinity of two per cent in the next two years, while job growth will register approximately one per cent in 2008 and 2009 respectively. While interest rates are expected to increase, their relatively low levels combined with the growing range of financial instruments should still facilitate home buying in the coming years and possibly encourage some households to move ahead their purchase plans. Population aging will continue to fuel demand for such dwellings as condominium and retirement home apartments.

Quebec MLS sales forecasted to be 79,000 in 2008
Resales: Sales of existing homes will moderate but remain strong in the coming years. Demand for existing condominiums (be they townhomes or apartments) will be robust. Sales of existing homes on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) should be in the vicinity of 79,000 in each of 2008 and 2009.

2008 Housing prices expected to rise 3% in Quebec
With sales expected to cool and inventories expected to rise once again, price growth will not be as strong in the coming years. We expect that prices will increase by approximately 3 per cent in both 2008 and 2009, compared to over six per cent in 2007. As a result, the MLS average resale price will approach $215,000 in 2008 and $221,000 in 2009.

Quebec key stats
Metric Quebec Canada

Population

2007
Consumer Price Index
Mar'08 (2002 = 100)

7,700,800

32,568,000

112

113

Average earnings

$37,887

$40,914

(Feb'08)

Unemployment rate
(Mar'08 )

7.3%

6.0%

Housing starts
(Mar'08)

45,700

243,000

2007 (E) Average Residential Resale Price

$206,843

$306,397*

6.6%
$214,600

10.6%
$322,400*

2008 (F)

(annual % change)
2009 (F)

3.8%
$221,000

5.2%
$334,500*

3.0%
$17,669,506,000

3.8%
$152,478,903,000

Chartered banks

Mortgages approved by lenders, residential 2006

Trust companies

$957,821,000

$6,664,898,000

Life and companies other

$7,262,741,000

$30,225,144,000

Total
Source: Stats Canada, CMHC 2007 E = estimated by the CMHC

$25,890,068,000

$189,368,945,000

* Canada calculation excludes Yukon and Northwest Territories Data based on application received date Mortgage approval data are gross and may not fully capture lending activities of credit unions, caisses populaires, other sma ller institutions and privately-insured loans in some areas Quebec data is understated due to low response rate to the surveys in that province. *Conventional Lending data only

Local Market Indicators
Sources: CMHC, Canadian Real Estate Association, Local Real Estate Boards, Statistics Canada

Census Metropolitan Area

Total Housing Starts

MLS sales

MLS average price

2007

2,788

4,537

$182,477

Gatineau

2008 (F)

2,500

4,550

$185,000

2009(F)

2,400

5,000

$187,000

2007

23,233

42,800

$251,000

Montreal

2008 (F)

22,600

41,500

$263,500

2009(F)

21,900

40,700

$274,000

2007

5,284

7,684

$176,097

Qu� City ec

2008 (F)

5,000

7,500

$188,000

2009(F)

4,850

7,500

$197,000

2007

685

1,260

$136,977

Saguenay

2008 (F)

1,100

1,225

$150,000

2009(F)

500

1,200

$160,000

2007

1,318

1,872

$177,281

Sherbrooke

2008 (F)

1,293

1,900

$ 186,145

2009(F)

1,286

1,919

$193,591

Trois-Rivi� es

2007

1,197

863

$128,000

2008 (F)

1,150

825

$136,000

2009(F)
MLS = Multiple Listings Service *MLS numbers reflect all of Durham Region

975

775

$143,000

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