Halifax not Happy

by Grainne Burns21 Oct 2013

“Happy” is not a word to describe many investors in Halifax this week following the news that the Regional Municipality has proposed a fee of $882 for every new detached or semi-detached home being built. The fees will pay for a planned extended bus service, but they wouldn’t stop there.
Coupled with the threat of higher water, sewer and underground utility charges, developers say such expenses could add as much as $30,000 to the price of home in the HRM.
Investors who are considering buying new units in suburban areas may be discouraged by this warning, says Trevor Parsons, owner of Innovative Real Estate Halifax, but adds that there are greater opportunities in the urban core.
“There have been a number of new subdivisions built in the last number of years, especially single-family homes, so there is a lot of supply in the market,” he says. “There are lots of opportunities for multi-units in the urban core that provide great returns for investors.”
Speaking to CREW, Parsons believes the municipality is moving in the right direction in consideration of the city’s long-term development.
“I personally think it’s a good thing as the city has basically been gutted, mainly because of urban sprawl,” he says. “Such a move will help manage urban sprawl and improve the city overall.”
According to CMHC, the vacancy rate for two-bedroom rental apartment is 3.7 per cent, and a three-bedroom is 5.3 per cent. Those rates could be pushed downward if high prices for new-build homes keeps some renters from entering the home-buying market.

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