Amid a burgeoning economy, Prince Edward Island is seeing greater need for residential units geared towards low- and mid-income households.
This is especially because over the last three years, residential property prices in the Island’s capital of Charlottetown grew much faster compared to even the nation’s hottest markets, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association.
The city’s home price growth of 38.5% during that period considerably outpaced other high-volume cities like Victoria (33.3%), Toronto (25.3%), Montreal (17.7%), and Vancouver (10.93%).
PEI Real Estate Association Greg Lipton cited the provincial nominee program as a major contributor to the trend.
The steady arrival of immigrants looking for homes of their own has grossly inflamed demand. From 2010 to 2018, the PEI has seen the entry of over 12,000 immigrants.
“They came with a lot of money and they wanted something new, and we didn’t really have a lot of new stuff at that time,” Lipton told CBC News. “New construction is very expensive. We’re up to close to $200 per square foot nowadays to get anything built.”
Compounding the issue is that PEI’s immigrant retention rate is so far the worst in Canada. This has a significant knock-on effect upon the market, as any departing immigrant will be looking to get the most value out of their investments.
This will lead to ever-higher prices for the city’s residential assets, Lipton warned.
“There’s not enough housing here right now, affordable or any other kind of housing, so once again people will pay the price.”
Over the last three years, Charlottetown’s average housing price increased from $200,000 to $277,000.
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