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Shell deal could boost Ascension home prices

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Posted: Sep 25, 2013 6:12 PM by Rob Krieger
Updated: Sep 25, 2013 7:01 PM
Source: WBRZ

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Topics: Shell, Ascension, money, LSU, impact, housing, sales

PRAIRIEVILLE - As Ascension Parish readies itself for a $12.5 billion dollar plant deal that's in the work with Shell, homeowners in the area are already excited about what it could mean for them.

An economic impact study done by LSU shows the plant could have waves of impact, not just ripples, on the parish.

"This dwarfs any of the impacts of, say, the location of IBM, which was significant, but not nearly as significant as building a $12.5 billion facility," said Robert Newman, chair of the Economics Department at LSU.

The economic impact is all but guaranteed to roll down to the housing market, which could boost prices.

"Existing home prices will rise, so homeowners will see a benefit because they'll see the price of their home go up, which on average about two-thirds of their wealth position is tied up in their house, so their wealth will rise," said Newman.

Realtors think as soon as Shell picks Ascension permanently, the time to sell will be imminent.

"People are gonna be moving up to larger homes, and this is a great opportunity for them to get the most dollars per square foot for their home, because there's not a lot of inventory and those people moving up, someone is going to have to move into their place and I believe that's what the 750 jobs are gonna bring to our area," said Alexa Ritchie, a sales consultant at Re/Max.

Shell still has two years to decide if Ascension will be their new home.

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