Halifax Real Estate Market
The economy is Nova Scotia is expected to contract by 1 percent in 2009 and that is effecting the housing market in Halifax. It is expected to recover moderately in 2010 however with growth of about 1 percent but we are in a much better position economically than most other regions in Canada. We have avoided the peaks and valleys that these other areas have seen both economically and with our Real Estate Market. The Halifax Area has been influenced by an increasing number of people migrating to the city from rural areas and from other countries. This has reduced the stress on the recently tight labour market. We have seen a record number of employed people in the Halifax Regional Municipality. There is an average 209,000 people employed in Halifax and through the first 3 months there was an average of 213,000.
Record employment and low interest rates will continue demand for housing
Despite coming off record levels of employment in 2008, near record levels on employment in HRM coupled with really low interest rates will continue the demand for housing in the Halifax-Area. Economic uncertainty will offset this and the result will be lower demand for both resale and new construction in Halifax than in 2008.
Less expensive homes are more in demand
Consumers have shifted to less expensive homes as a result of the economic uncertainty. In the 3 months of 2008, 54 percent of new single-detached homes sales averages more than $300,000 in price. This percentage share has dropped to 47% in the first 3 months of 2009 even though the average sale price of a resale home has increased in the same period. This trend is expected to continue and will result in a negative impact on the average sale price of homes in the Halifax Regional Municipality.
Existing home sales to decline further in HRM
There was an 11 percent drop in the number of MLS sales in 2008 compared to 2007. Most of this was in the 4th quarter of 2008 with seasonally adjusted sales being off by 26 percent which is equal to the amount sales dropped in the first quarter of 2009 compared to the first quarter of 2008. While the economy in Halifax is steady the bad news from other areas of the world and the uncertainty is causing reduced demand for homes, both new and resale. Therefore, the number of resale homes in the Halifax Regional Municipality are expected to decrease by another 11 percent for the remainder of 2009. They are expected to recover in 2010 by 7%.