Good new/bad news for investors

Demand for housing in Fort McMurray proper is expected to spike even further following the news provincial funding has fallen through for road improvements to two prime building sites.

Inadequate road access to highways 63 and 69 has already stalled two construction developments this year with the city requiring, on average, 600 single-family lots to meet growing employment. House prices in the booming Alberta region could escalate, with that demand continuing to outstrip supply by a significant proportion.

Instead of making roots and settling in the area long-term, many of the thousands of workers who moved to the area to work in the oil and sands sector there are choosing to stay in the camps provided by respective employers. “This is obviously a big concern for all in the region,” says local real estate agent Sheryl Scott. “Everyone wants these workers and their families to be part of the community long term but the prices are a factor for some who cannot rent or buy.”

While house prices slipped by six per cent in Fort McMurray in May compared to 2012, the average price still hovers around the $760,000 mark, says Scott.

Scott told CREW that rented properties can “go within one day of being listed” with demand still exceptionally strong for single family homes in the region.

The lack of funding for Highway 69 has primarily had an impact on housing projects in the Saline Creek district where plans for 400 new apartments were stalled this Spring.

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