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Pictou County real estate market faces uncertain immediate future

Will more of these be popping up around Pictou County?
Will more of these be popping up around Pictou County? - Kevin Bent

NEW GLASGOW – 
Peter Fraser has already been fielding calls.
A realtor with Viewpoint Real Estate, Fraser said he took roughly a dozen phone calls over the past couple of weeks from employees who work directly at Northern Pulp, or people in related spinoff jobs.
He said they were inquiring about the process of unloading their homes. 
“I’m very nervous for them,” he said.
Fraser said because of the salaries that Northern Pulp workers are drawing, areas such as west side New Glasgow, and the subdivision developments off Fraser’s Mountain, could be adversely affected.
“We are in unchartered waters,” he said. “I’m expecting (the Northern Pulp closure) to have a negative impact of some kind, but to what extent is uncertain.”
Susan Green, of Coldwell Banker MB Green Realty said the closure of Northern Pulp isn’t necessarily gloom and doom for the Pictou County real estate market. 
“It’s a little too early to tell,” she said.  “It’s going to take six months to a year for the trends to start showing up.”
She said the Town of Pictou might even see an uptick in the real estate market once the mill closes, taking an estimated 300 jobs with it and spinoff jobs as well. 
“In Pictou, it is likely to be either not impacted, or impacted positively, in my opinion,” Green said, adding that “Pictou specifically, should be neutral, at worse.”
Green, who has been in the real estate business for more than 40 years, recalls that the 1992 Westray mine explosion resulted in a period of bust for the real estate market, one that took this area “18 months to two years to come out of.”
But she noted that when Michelin downsized several years ago (the county has recently enjoyed a surge of job creation at the Granton plant), the impact was minimal, as was the case when TrentonWorks closed in the first decade of the 21st century.
“People who worked at TrentonWorks already had their own homes,” Green said, noting that many employees affected by the rail car plant closing down kept Pictou County as a home base, even if they had to move away for work.  

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