Affordable housing is in high demand in Summerside and the Prince County area, and a shortage of listings has hampered sales activity in the first quarter of the year.
Overall, Atlantic Canada is poised for strong housing market performance in 2019 as economic performance ramps up, unemployment rates decline, and first-time buyer incentives at both provincial and federal government levels take hold, according to the RE/MAX 2019 Atlantic Canada Housing Market Report. The report found strong momentum in the larger urban centres, as well as spillover into several smaller markets. Home sales are on par or up in just under half the markets surveyed (7/15), likely due to the current shortage of inventory, while housing values have climbed in almost three-quarters (11/15) of the Atlantic Canadian markets surveyed.
Housing Activity in Summerside
Multiple offers abound, especially at lower price points, with some properties sold in less than 24-hours. Local buyers are active, with many empty nesters and retirees looking to downsize, but smaller homes and rental accommodations are few and far between. Retirees from Ontario and British Columbia, drawn to picturesque landscape and the quality of life at an affordable price point, have contributed to the mix. Investment properties throughout the Island are also sought after, with foreign investors leading the charge. Despite some recent high-end sales, demand for housing over $350,000 is limited. With the April thaw well underway, more listings are expected to come on-stream, which should help balance demand and ease upward pressure on pricing for the remainder of the year.
Atlantic Canada Housing Market Highlights
- First-time buyers were a driving force in almost 70 per cent of markets surveyed. (10/15)
- Low inventory levels were reported in 80 per cent of markets. (12/15)
- Home sales were strongest at starter price points ranging from $100,000 to $300,000.
- Buyers from other parts of the country were active in 60 per cent of Atlantic Canada housing markets. (9/15)
- Newfoundland and Labrador and New Brunswick are seeing an influx of people returning home after working in Alberta’s oil sector.
- Luxury sales were up in Halifax-Dartmouth, Saint John and Kings County.