Decline in housing starts in Québec in march

Chute des mises en chantier au Québec en mars

Housing starts have fallen by 27 % in march in Quebec compared to the same month a year earlier, according to data published Wednesday by the canada mortgage and housing corporation (CMHC).

Compared to February of last year, the decline was 9% in Quebec last month.

It comes to decreases stronger than the canadian average. Compared to march 2019, housing starts remained virtually equal to last month in the country, while they have declined by 7 % compared to February.

“The national trend of the housing starts decreased in march, no doubt a sign that the pandemic COVID-19 has started to affect the sector of residential construction, said Bob Dugan, chief economist at CMHC, by issuing a press release.

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The activity tended to decrease in both Toronto and Montreal, as well as in the respective provinces of these two centres.”

In Montreal, the yards were dropped to 43 % in march compared with the same month in 2019. The decrease was much more pronounced in Saguenay (-100 %), Gatineau (-75 %) and Trois-Rivières (-59%), while it was lower in Sherbrooke (-12 %). A strong increase of 99 % has been registered in Quebec.

At the canadian level, the decline was 1 % for the urban centres of 10 000 inhabitants or more in march compared with the same month a year earlier.

It is to be noted that the monthly changes made are normal because of the projects that are being put in motion, particularly in smaller markets.

Concerning the crisis of the COVID-19, the CMHC said to follow the impact it will have in the field of construction. It’s ongoing stress tests, using scenarios for pandemic.

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