Waterfront properties are among New Brunswick’s biggest draws

New Brunswick’s rural recreational property segment experienced a modest annual increase in prices, according to data from the 2017 Royal LePage Canadian Recreational Housing Report released earlier this week.

This development offset weaker prices in N.B.’s metropolitan markets, according to the study. Recreational properties in the province went for an average of $179,500 in May.

“Provincially, rural recreational markets across New Brunswick saw slight increases in pricing as a result of competitively priced waterfront listings attracting more buyers, and retirees electing to sell their primary residences in the city in order to settle into year-round recreational properties in more tranquil regions,” Royal LePage stated in its report.

“Urban areas on the other hand saw marginal price declines as work shortages caused many New Brunswick-born oil patch workers to return home and tighten their finances, electing to stand pat and avoid discretionary purchases like a recreational property.”

Southeast New Brunswick was emblematic of the trend, with recreational property sales and prices slightly increasing over the previous year, and supply decreasing as Canadians age 55 and above continue to sell their properties.

As of May 2017, the average price of riverside property within the region stood at $175,000, while oceanfront properties, woodland cabins, and recreational condominiums went for $350,000, $32,000 and $179,000, respectively.

“We have seen a decline in the number of waterfront properties coming onto the market for the first time in eight years,” Royal LePage Atlantic sales representative Norah Higgerty said. “With less available inventory and a slight increase in demand, our market has moved from a strong buyer's market to one that is more balanced.”

Royal LePage Gardiner Realty broker and manager Chris Pitman noted that these numbers should be viewed in light of the province’s current economic realities.

“While many New Brunswick-born interprovincial workers are coming back to the province, they are primarily venturing into the residential market, avoiding additional discretionary purchases at this time. As a result, there is a wealth of recreational properties sitting on the market, and this will likely remain unchanged until employment in the oil sector stabilizes or new entrants and retirees create a strong enough sense of demand to move the needle.”

Related stories:
CMHC: N.B. mortgage delinquency ‘disproportionately high’
Big-city dwellers snapping up an increasing number of rustic homes in the East Coast

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