montreal skyline Montrealers might be surprised to find out that economists are starting to mention their fair city in the same breath as “condo crazy” Toronto and “most expensive city in Canada” Vancouver.

But the new numbers released by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation earlier this week have market experts surprised by the year-over-year leap in condo starts. According to the CMHC, condo starts rose 84 per cent, year over year in the Greater Montreal Area.

The numbers were so strong that they affected the results of the first few months of 2012. During Q1-2012, condo starts rose 3 per cent when compared to the same period in 2011. Once you throw the April 2012 stats into the mix, you get a 27 per cent compared to the same period in 2011.

This may be a statistical blip but a Montreal Gazette article points to the fact that starts were expected to dip in 2011 but instead rose 20 per cent to 12,681 units for the year.

The article also notes the growing number of buyers who are looking to purchase and rent in Montreal where carrying costs are relatively low when compared to Toronto and Vancouver.

Interested to see how the numbers look over the next few months!

Cool Montreal skyline photo courtesy of Jahul.

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