With the latest good news for Sarnia-Lambton, the new NOVA plant, we continue to be on an economic roll in the right direction. Everyone either assumes or believes real estate prices will be affected.Let’s analyze the current economic conditions to see how, and if, this holds true. NOVA announced a new 2.2 billion dollar plant that will require at peak 1400 to 2000 construction workers for the next three years, and ultimately 150 new permanent company workers. The economic benefits of this are enormous for our area, and the immediate effect will be full time employment for our local construction trades. Local service businesses will most certainly benefit. Local residential rentals, at all price points, should see an increase in demand, especially if out of town workers are needed up the road. Most local workers already own or rent housing, so other than more steady work, the effects on real estate prices should be minimal from this group. Secondary and support industry workers that have economic spin off should help to push real estate prices up as buyers have more money to spend on upgrading housing. These same people will be competing with an already short supply of houses that are currently being sought after. This also includes out of town people looking to retire here. The fact that Sarnia-Lambton has some of the lowest priced real estate anywhere will most definitely lead to higher prices, especially for well maintained or updated houses. New housing pricing will continue to rise, as the cost of serviced land, material, labor and more government regulations make it more expensive for builders to complete. However this would be true even without an increase in economic activity. The price effect on new housing could be made even worse by the shortage and the availability of competent trades, as some are leaving housing work for more lucrative union trade jobs in heavy industry.
Overall I believe that some real estate prices will rise, but not crazy price increases like you see in bigger markets. Higher prices are always pushed by high demand from permanent residents moving into an area. We are still in a slow growth area that is stable, but not bursting at the seems with people, like so many other cities. Any recent price increases are just due to the demand of upgrading buyers competing with retirees moving in to our area.
Our future is bright. Along with NOVA, other established companies, our new future fuel technologies start ups, and our expanding Lambton College, look for some strong growth in price values in some areas and stable price values in other areas.
If you have any questions or topics you would like addressed, please call or text me at 519-383-2566, or email me.