OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - May 30, 2011) - Housing starts are forecast to stabilize at levels consistent with demographic fundamentals in 2011 and 2012, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation's (CMHC) second quarter Housing Market Outlook, Canada Edition.1

Housing starts will be in the range of 166,600 to 192,200 units in 2011, with a point forecast of 179,500 units. In 2012, housing starts will be in the range of 163,200 to 207,000 units, with a point forecast of 185,300 units.

"Modest economic growth, in conjunction with relatively low mortgage rates, will continue to support demand for new homes in 2011 and 2012. Nonetheless, we are expecting new and existing housing markets to fall in line with demographic fundamentals, as changes to mortgage rules take hold," said Bob Dugan, Chief Economist for CMHC.

Existing home sales will be in the range of 429,500 to 480,000 units in 2011, with a point forecast of 452,100 units. In 2012, MLS®2 sales will move up and are expected to be in the range of 410,000 to 511,900 units, with a point forecast of 461,300 units.

The recent increase in the average MLS® price reflected strong sales in Vancouver's property resale market. For the remainder of 2011, we expect the average MLS® price to moderate. Nevertheless, the average MLS® price will experience an overall increase this year. As the existing home market moves to more balanced markets in 2012, growth in the average MLS® price in 2012 is expected to be more modest than in 2011.

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 homes. 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.

This release is also available on the CMHC Web site:

1 The forecasts included in the Housing Market Outlook are based on information available as of April 28, 2011. Where applicable, forecast ranges are also presented in order to reflect economic uncertainty.

2 Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) is a registered trademark owned by the Canadian Real Estate Association.

Contact Information:

Charles Sauriol
CMHC Media Relations
(613) 748-2799