Canada Post plans to charge developers to install community mailboxes

OTTAWA – Buyers of new homes may have an additional fee to contend with next year and they’ll have Canada Post, in part, to thank for it.

The country’s postal service operator says it will begin charging developers $200 per home address to install community mailboxes in new residential neighbourhoods and commercial areas.

The new fee will kick in starting in January.

While the fees won’t be directly charged to homeowners, it is likely that developers will pass off the expense to buyers.

Canada Post is looking for new ways to generate revenue and help reduce the quarterly losses its has been racking up.

Mail volumes have been declining for years as more Canadians turn to the Internet instead of letter services to pay their bills, while couriers have also snagged part of the large package market.

But Canada Post has also faced a rise in the number of new mailing addresses each year, which it says can sometimes be as high as 200,000. The company said the installation of new boxes can increase expenses by millions of dollar each year.

Canada Post noted that it will still be responsible for some of the associated costs, such as installation and maintenance.