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Strong surge in housing starts for first two months of 2006

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  • Strong surge in housing starts for first two months of 2006

    Strong surge in housing starts for first two months of 2006
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    Font: * * * * Ron Chalmers, The Edmonton Journal
    Published: Thursday, March 09, 2006
    EDMONTON - Edmonton-area housing starts rose 83.6 per cent in February 2006, from February 2005.

    For the first two months of this year, starts are up 56.9 per cent to 2,016.

    Richard Goatcher, senior market analyst for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, links the surge to mild weather plus low inventories of new and resale homes.

    Edmonton-area starts lead the province. For the first two months, starts are up 32.4 per cent in Red Deer, 13.3 per cent in Calgary.

    Across Canada, "starts in the first quarter of 2006 are on track to be at their highest level in the current housing cycle," says Sebastien Lavoie of TD Economics.

    Starts have fallen by 15 per cent in Ontario and nine per cent in Quebec. Both provinces have endured frigid weather.

    The bull market in housing could be further extended, Lavoie suggests, by a CMHC pilot project that allows 30-year, rather than 25-year, mortgage amortization periods.

    Investment Property Databank reported Wednesday that the Canadian Property Index, measuring the average market values of investment properties, rose 18.7 per cent in 2005. The increases were 23.4 per cent in Edmonton and 26.5 per cent in Calgary.

    Cushman & Wakefield LePage has reported that industrial property rents in the London Heathrow airport are the highest in the world at $31.72 per square foot per year, including taxes and operating costs. That's more than 50 per cent higher than any other location.

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    Rank City Rent ($)

    1. Heathrow 31.72

    2. Tokyo 20.06

    3. Dublin 18.19

    4. Moscow 17.84

    5. Singapore 16.79

    10. Zurich 14.81

    20. Athens 10.73

    23. Calgary 10.14

    30. Vienna 8.28

    Note: Rents, in Canadian dollars, are per square foot per year including taxes and operating costs.

    Source: Cushman & Wakefield LePage

    © The Edmonton Journal 2006