The provincial government is planning to sell or re-purpose some of its 18,000 public housing units intended for low income residents.

Hard to rent units in rural communities will be the first to go.

Social Services Minister Tina Beaudry-Mellor says some of the units have been vacant for longer than six months.

The government says it is experiencing a vacancy rate of 15 per cent in towns of 1,000 people or less and eight per cent in the cities. 58% of tenants in the units are seniors.

The government hasn't said how many units will be sold but says they will be priced at fair market value.

Some of the properties may remain in the province’s possession as housing for doctors, nurses and teachers as a way of attracting professionals to rural areas.

The NDP believe the government hopes to get $100 million for the sale of the properties, the government has not confirmed that number.