Home prices remained stable in May


Demand for detached housing continues to rise


Fueled by the detached sector, Calgary home prices trended up for the fourth consecutive month, but remain below 2014 highs.

 

"The economic climate is supporting detached housing market recovery," said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. 

"Improved demand and easing supply has created more balanced conditions and ultimately some modest price gains. While it will still take some time for prices to recover, the transition in the detached segment is an important first step to stabilization across all segments of the housing market."

 

For the first time since June 2015, prices in the detached sector did not decline on a year-over-year basis.  Unadjusted detached benchmark prices reached $509,000 in May, one per cent higher than last month and May 2016 levels.

Like the detached market, the attached product has moved towards more balanced conditions. This has supported some recent directional shifts in pricing.  However, monthly price declines had fallen by 4.7 per cent over peak levels and year-to-date benchmark prices remain two per cent below last year's levels.

 

"We can really see a slow but sure recovery in the housing market," said CREB® president David P. Brown. 

 

"Demand for detached product is driving a new sense of optimism for consumers as we move further into spring." 

Against this backdrop, the number of new listings rose to 3,866 units in May, which is 17 per cent higher than last year's total for the month. Despite this rise, year-to-date new listings have declined by one per cent over last year.  

 

"With the change in market dynamics, people no longer feel like they may need to settle for a second choice in a property," said Brown. 

 

"There are lots of housing choices in every segment of the market and that made for a good situation in an already active spring market." 

 

The variation in market activity also extends to regional areas outside the city of Calgary. Please go to CREB®'s Regional Report for highlights on regional activity.

 

Click here to view the full City of Calgary monthly stats package. 

 

Click here to view the full Calgary region monthly stats package. 

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Victoria Day for many of us is the first official weekend of camping season and an unofficial start to summer-our tents and trailers are prepped for their next seasonal shift, our gardens are cleaned and flowers planted. Naturally, all Canadians welcome this holiday mentally with open arms, and in truth, how can we not?! However, given that today is the actual holiday Monday, it's a good time as any to understand the reason for this day off. 

 

Queen Victoria was the second longest reigning monarch of the UK, with her time on the throne being just recently surpassed by our current monarch, Queen Elizabeth II. Queen Victoria reigned from the tender age of 18 in 1837 to 1901 and only became Queen after her father's three brothers died, all of whom passed without leaving any surviving legitimate children. She married her first-cousin, Prince Albert, with whom she had nine children. They shared a very close relationship and his passing in the middle of her reign in 1861 plunged her into deep mourning from which she never recovered. She loved to write and rumor has it she wrote around 2500 words a day in her journals, leaving behind 122 volumes of her daily life.

 

Her birthday is May 24th and hence on Victoria Day, we are essentially celebrating her birth. This event was celebrated here in Canada since 1845 and therefore long before Confederation, but it became law in 1901 that the Monday before the 24th of May must be celebrated in her name. Though she was not a large woman (she was only 4ft and 11 inches tall), her legacy speaks volumes and she is remembered as being a Queen who restored the reputation of the monarchy and also reconnected the monarchy with the public through their civic duties which are still very strong and present today. Throughout Canada she is celebrated with parades and fireworks, especially in Victoria, BC, her namesake city. Interestingly enough, Queen Victoria's sixth child, Princess Louise Caroline Alberta, is the namesake of our province. Originally there were plans to call our province Louise, however to honor both her daughter and her deceased husband, the name Alberta was instituted. (However, should you find yourself at Lake Lousie today, raise a glass in her name!)

 

Wishing you all a fantastic kick off to your summers, as well as a fun day with your family and friends!

 

Mark

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So, we've decided to have some fun and give away a prize.

 

Throughout the city's Westside, from Cougar Ridge to just south of Aspen, we have several bus benches advertising our services and expertise in the area. We're asking you to take a selfie with one of them and post it to social media (Instagram or Facebook), and just by doing that, you will be entered in a raffle to win $100 to Aspen Wine and Spirits.

 

Here are the official rules:

 

➡︎ Like and follow our page on Facebook (Lukwinski Real Estate) and Instagram (@markonyyc )
➡︎Take a fun selfie at one of our bus benches located throughout Calgary's Westside
➡︎Post to Instagram or Facebook using the hashtag #MARKonYYCselfie


That's it! We couldn't have made this any easier!

 

We will close this contest on May 28th 2017. We will randomly pick a winner and do an announcement on Monday, May 29th! Good luck and happy snapping, all for the love of wine. 

 

 

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This weekend we celebrate Mother's Day and there is no shortage of events taking place all over Calgary to honor our moms. Click on this link below to see and pick all the various events you can peruse to celebrate your moms and families.

 

Ever wondered how Mother's Day began? A woman by the name of Anna Jarvis started to campaign in the States in 1905 to create a national holiday to honor all mothers after the death of her own mom that same year. Because her mom was a peace activist who cared for wounded soldiers in the American Civil War, she wanted to honor her mom and all moms because they did more for their children than anyone else. After some obstacles with the US Congress, the first Mother's Day was celebrated in 1908. By 1911, all US States celebrated Mother's Day on the second Sunday of May. Though Jarvis was behind the creation of this day of commemoration, she never liked the vast commercialization of it and protested the way the holiday went. By the early 1920's, Hallmark started creating cards and suggesting gifts to purchase to celebrate moms and well, the rest as they say, is history! 

 

Let us know if there is an event on this list above that you'll be attending with your mom, or perhaps you discovered something else to do. Either way, we wish you all a fantastic day celebrating the matriarch's in your families and lives, especially the ones who are no longer here with us. To all moms of all creatures, we salute you! 

 

Mark

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Directly south of last week's community profile of South Calgary, we find ourselves looking at the neighborhood of Altadore. Let's dive in!

 

Deemed a trendy inner city neighborhood, Altadore is currently experiencing a gentrification process due to the luxury and high-end semi-detached homes that have been going up in the community over the last several years. Located just south of 34th Ave and trendy Marda Loop and bordered by 50th Avenue in it's most southern region, Altadore is an old neighborhood that was established in 1945. To the east it is bound by Elbow River and to the west by 20th Street. The map below depicts where Altadore is located in Calgary.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

As we have included with the other zones and communities, we will dissect a little of the demographic information on this community. Looking at Altadore, the last census of 2014 reflected a population of 9,518 in the community, where 18% of the population is under 15 years old, 68% are between 20-64 years, and lastly 10% of the population is over 65 years. Sixty-eight percent of dwellings in Altadore are occupied by owners and a variety of dwelling types are exhibited. In terms of real estate, the majority of homes in Altadore are single-family homes, making up 40% of the neighborhood. Duplexes make up 16% of the community, townhomes are present at 16%, and apartments at 23%. Converted structures come in at 4%.

 

The median age is 37 and is listed as a community that is entirely english-speaking, since 0% of the population doesn't speak English. The median household income is $96,932 and according to CREB so far in 2017, 21 detached homes have sold at an average price of $1,130,667 with a price range of $632,500 to $1,910,000. For attached homes, 32 properties changed Title in 2017 (to date) with an average price of $771,063, where the range low was at $363,000 and the range high was $1,260,000. For more information and as with all our information sources, you can view more concise details by visiting the City of Calgary’s neighborhood profiles, found here.

 

Normally we include a crime map for each area that we profile, but there were issues with the Calgary Police website in generating this map this week, so we will add this information when the site is working again. Apologies!  

 

In terms of placement in the city, Altadore is well placed if you work downtown but also enjoy having quick access to parks and green spaces. Sandy Beach, River Park and Riverdale Park all flank the eastern edge of the community. Being inner-city you are able to access any parts of the city by car but there is so much to offer and access on foot in the community too. From the community, a quick drive west along 33rd or 50th Ave takes you to Crowchild Trail which connects you north and south and to other fast arteries dispersed in the city. 

 

Located on the northern lip of this community is Marda Loop, a collection of different shops and services offering you literally everything you need. Grocery stores, flower shops, banks, dentists, gyms, coffee shops, pet stores, restaurants, pubs, and more are on offer. Marda Loop is great to wander around in and really take in the community. 

 

Schools representing the private sector are found within a short drive's reach if this is something that is attractive to you. Because they're relatively close, all the private schools we have profiled on Calgary's West Side can still be of consideration:  Webber Academy,  Calgary AcademyRundle CollegeWaldorf SchoolCalgary French & International School, and Edge School for Athletes. To this West Island CollegeNorth Point School for BoysBanbury Crossroads School, and Lycee Louis Pasteur schools can also be added as they are close by. 

 

In the Calgary Public School district, Altadore School, Central Memorial High School, and Elboya School are designated elementary and junior high schools.

 

In the Catholic District, St. Michael's SchoolHoly NameSt. Mary's High School, Bishop Carroll, and St. James School are designated in the separate system. 

 

Being centrally-located, there are many places of worship to access from this point in the city. Click on this link to find the right place of worship for your culture and background.

 

As was the case with South Calgary, residents of Altadore are encouraged to join the Marda Loop Communities Association which offers different ways to become a member. The association is very active in organizing monthly and annual events, offering residents plenty of opportunities to get to know one another and get involved in their community. The Marda Gras festival takes place every August and is a popular event where people and events literally spill into the street, bringing the community together. In case you didn't read it in our blog entry last week, the name 'Marda' originates from the blending of two names, Marc and Mada Jenkins who opened the Marda movie theatre back in 1953. Historically, the area has always been very active because it used to be the turn around point for a street-car that used to run to the community from downtown. 

 

That's a wrap for this week on Altadore! Since it is an area known for putting up modern homes, there are a variety of beautiful homes and stunning large lots for you to pick from to find your dream home. If there is anything you'd like to see or if you have any questions, I'm always available to talk or meet up. Enjoy the warmer weather this weekend-get out and soak up some Vitamin D! Tune in next week as we offer suggestions on what to do in our marvelous Calgary for Mother's Day! 

 

 

Mark

 

 

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City-wide prices hold steady as labour market improves


Calgary's housing market continued to show signs of stability in April. With improvements in the labour market and a balanced detached sector, city-wide benchmark prices reached $439,600 in April, similar to the previous month, but 0.90 per cent below last year's levels.

 

"More jobs means less uncertainty for people who are sitting on the fence," said CREB®president David P. Brown. "There also tends to be fewer people who need to sell when employment improves, and that can prevent inventory gains and further price reductions in the market. It's a good scenario for sellers who are entering a spring market that's in better shape than anything we've seen in recent years."

 

While adjustments are still occurring in the apartment condominium sector, the detached segment of the market is improving across all price segments.

 

"Detached product has not faced the same supply pressure as the apartment sector," said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. "Detached supply from new construction didn't surpass previous highs. That helped prevent steeper price adjustments in the detached sector when demand eased."

 

The relationship between sales and inventory will be a key driver for pricing in the months ahead. Total transactions improved to 1,917 units in April, while inventories totaled 5,495 units, pushing months of supply below three for the second consecutive month.

 

With sales up and overall market inventory down, months of supply has already pulled back from elevated levels recorded over the past two years. While activity continues to vary by location and product type, more balanced conditions will help to support overall price stability. 

 

"Improvements in the employment situation were necessary to prevent further declines in the housing sector," said Lurie. "However, economic recovery is still expected to be slow, impacting the pace and quality of job growth. Based on current expectations this should translate into a more prolonged period of recovery in the housing market."

 

Click here to view the full City of Calgary monthly stats package. 

 

Click here to view the full Calgary region monthly stats package. 


CREB statistics

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We finished profiling all the neighborhoods on Calgary's West Side and we have started moving a bit more east to profile a few more. This week's blog update is all about South Calgary! Let's dive in and explore this trendy area and why it is so sought-after in Calgary's real estate market. 

 

A trendy inner city neighborhood, South Calgary is bounded by 14th Street in the east, 26th Ave to the north, Crowchild Trail to the west, and 34th Ave to the south. It was annexed by the City in 1907 but remained largely undeveloped until the 1950's. The map below depicts where South Calgary is located. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As we have included with the other zones and communities, we will dissect a little of the demographic information on this community. Looking at South Calgary, the last census of 2014 reflected a population of 3,959 in the community, where 9% of the population is under 15 years old, 83% are between 20-64 years, and lastly 5% of the population is over 65 years. Only forty-eight percent of dwellings in South Calgary are occupied by owners and a variety of dwelling types are exhibited. The majority of homes in South Calgary are apartments, making up 48% of the neighborhood. Duplexes make up 18% of the community, townhomes are present at 6%, and single-detached houses at 26%. 

 

The median age is 33 and is listed as a community that is overwhelmingly english-speaking, since only 1% of the population doesn't speak English. The median household income is $69,620 and according to CREB so far in 2017, 10 detached homes have sold at an average price of $792,100 with a price range of $535,000 to $1,625,000. For attached homes, 15 properties changed title in 2017 to date with an average price of $619,900 where the range low was at $350,000 and the range high was $1,120,000. For more information and as with all our information sources, you can view more concise details by visiting the City of Calgary’s neighborhood profiles, found here.

 

Moving onto crime details, below is a map depicting the crime stats over the last 6 months for South Calgary. As seen on the map provided by the Calgary Police website, in the last 6 months, there have only been 2 reported crime incidents, which is highly attractive and sought after when looking at a community to live and invest in. 

 

 

 

 

 

In terms of placement in the city, South Calgary is well placed if you work downtown but also enjoy having quick access to parks and green spaces. Being inner-city you are able to access any parts of the city by car but there is so much to offer and access on foot in the community too. From the community, a quick drive west along 33rd Ave takes you to Crowchild Trail which connects you north and south and to other fast arteries dispersed in the city. 

 

Located on the southern edge of this community is Marda Loop, a collection of different shops and services offering you literally everything you need. Grocery stores, flower shops, banks, dentists, gyms, coffee shops, pet stores, restaurants, pubs, and more are on offer. Marda Loop is great to wander around in and really take in the community. 

 

Schools representing the private sector are found within a short drive's reach if this is something that is attractive to you. Because they're relatively close, all the private schools we have profiled on Calgary's West Side can still be of consideration:  Webber Academy,  Calgary AcademyRundle CollegeWaldorf SchoolCalgary French & International School, and Edge School for Athletes. To this West Island College, North Point School for Boys, Banbury Crossroads School, and Lycee Louis Pasteur schools can also be added as they are close by. 

 

In the Calgary Public School district, Altadore School, Mount Royal School, and Richmond School are designated elementary and junior high schools. Western Canada High School is the designated high school for this community. 

 

In the Catholic District, St. Michael's School, Holy Name, Sacred HeartSt. Mary's High School and St. Monica School are designated in the separate system. 

 

Being centrally-located, there are many places of worship to access from this point in the city. Click on this link to find the right place of worship for your culture and background.

 

Residents of all the communities in South Calgary are encouraged to join the Marda Loop Communities Association which offers different ways to become a member. The association is very active in organizing monthly and annual events, offering residents plenty of opportunities to get to know one another and get involved in their community. The Marda Gras festival takes place every August and is a popular event where people and events literally spill into the street, bringing the community together. The name 'Marda' originates from the blending of two names, Marc and Mada Jenkins who opened the Marda movie theatre back in 1953. Historically, the area has always been very active because it used to be the turn around point for a street-car that used to run to the community from downtown. 

 

That's a wrap for this week on South Calgary! Tune in next week as we move south from this area and profile Altadore. South Calgary has a variety of beautiful houses and locations for you to pick from to find your dream home, so if there is anything you'd like to see or if you have any questions, I'm always available to talk or meet up. Enjoy the warmer weather which is promised to come our way! 

 

 

Mark

 

 

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The provincial government is turning up the heat on incentives to turn down emissions with their new Home Improvement Rebates program, taking effect today.

Homeowners can now apply to receive money back for installations of eligible home improvement products. These rebates will make energy efficient products more affordable for homeowners and lower their power bills after installation.  


Program details: 

Energy Efficiency Alberta, a new Government of Alberta agency, created the Home Improvement Rebates program to promote efficient energy consumption and reduce Alberta’s carbon footprint. The program is designed to support homeowners with the installation of energy-efficient appliances and products to reduce household emissions.

Rebates of up to $3,500 will be granted for eligible products including insulation, water heaters (ENERGY STAR® certified) and triple glaze (low-e, argon) windows. 


Rebate eligibility: 

To receive a rebate for the installation of an eligible home improvement product, homeowners must select an Alberta-based registered contractor from the list provided at efficiencyalberta.ca. The contractor will then guide homeowners through the application process and rebates will be sent directly to homeowners after the completion of each project. 


Rebate program types: 

The Home Improvement Rebate is just one of three rebate types offered by Energy Efficiency Alberta. Below are the different rebates available to Alberta’s homeowners through the Residential Retail Products Program:

  1. Home Improvement Rebates: Rebates for home improvements will be granted to homeowners who buy eligible products installed by a certified Alberta-based contractor. 
  2. Online rebates: Homeowners who buy qualifying refrigerators, smart thermostats and clothes washers can apply for rebates online. 
  3. Instant rebates: Homeowners can receive instant rebates when purchasing eligible home efficiency products at participating retail locations in Alberta. Eligible products include LED lights, programmable thermostats, water-saving devices, smart power bars, and heavy-duty timers. This campaign runs from April 28 until June 11. 

Visit efficiencyalberta.ca for more information on Energy Efficiency Alberta and the Home Improvement Rebate program.


By CREB

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Next week is the Federal deadline to submit your personal taxes and then in June, is our municipal deadline to pay our property taxes. Hence, this week we thought we'd look into our property taxes, how they're calculated and where they go.

 

Everyone groans at property tax time simply because parting with our hard-earned money is always hard to do. But, there is good reason for these payments.  In Alberta, our property taxes are collected both provincially and municipally, where about sixty percent of the collected levy stays within our City and forty percent goes to the Government of Alberta. The collective sum is used to fund a variety of things in the City, such as snow removal, street cleaning, street maintenance and repair, garbage collection, management of parks and green spaces, bylaw services, fire, police and emergency services, recreational and arts programs, events and festivals, protection of historical resources and provide access to our 311 information system. Naturally, everyone has an opinion as to how the funds should be spent and hence disagreements arise, however below is a visual breakdown of approximately how property tax dollars are spent every month (City of Calgary, 2017): 

 

Below is another display of how we compare for Calgary's Municipal rate to other cities. Granted, this statistic is from 2012, but it does show that at the time, our municipal contributions were one of the lowest in the country (City of Calgary 2017):

 

In terms of how our property taxes are calculated, every calendar year, our City council determines what funds are needed to run City services. From this calculation, they then remove revenue sources such as business tax, user fees, provincial grants, and licence fees. The amount left over is the amount needed to be raised through property taxes. A tax rate is then established and this is the rate charged for every $1 of assessed property value. In 2017, the combined tax rate is set to be 0.0065008 / $1 assessed value. In 2016, the rate was 0.0061738. 


Lastly, when it comes to assessing your property, the notice you receive in January from the City depicts the amount it would have sold for on July 1st the previous year, as well as includes any improvements to its physical condition as of December 31st. Factors such as age, location, additions, lot size, renovations and sales of similar properties in the vicinity over the last three years are included in determining the assessment of your property. You can of course challenge the assessment you receive by contacting the City before the start of March of each year. 


So, that's your Property Tax bill in a nutshell. As is always the case, please feel free to contact us if you have any questions about property taxes and your property. We always enjoy hearing from you! 

 

Mark 

 

 

 

 

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As you start to replace winter sweaters in all your closets with summer tank tops, and as ice skates and toboggans are thrown into storage after their Winter shift, it is easy and natural to focus on the interior of the house for the Great Big Spring Clean. This annual event indicates that we can collectively bid a farewell to colder and shorter days and this is truly something to be excited about.

 

However, care and attention should also be given to the exterior of your home because while we are inside keeping warm from the cold, the outside of our home battles all the elements and frost on our behalf. So, here are some of our tips on things to check into on the outside of your home and yard as you prep for that first inaugural BBQ of the season:

 

Check the exterior of your walls for chipped paint, mold, or splitting wood. To prevent anything from being damaged further, deal with these issues right away. If you have brick on your house exterior, check for mold and mildew and remove them by mixing a simple solution of bleach and water, (1 cup of bleach commands 4 L of water).

 

Clear all your gutters. So many leaves and twigs naturally fall into these lengthy pockets on your roof and this seasonal souvenir needs to be dealt with so not to clog your downspouts and cause water damage to your roof when the rain comes. If heights aren't your thing, there are many companies in the city to help you out.

 

Wash your windows. Grime and dirt will build up throughout the winter season so using warm soapy water (and not just window cleaner) will get the job done. Spring is also a good time to check the lubrication of all moving parts on your windows as well as the condition of your window frames, especially if they're wooden. Give your screens a proper cleaning too-they also get quite dusty and filthy throughout the winter months. 

 

Check your driveway and sidewalks for cracks. If moss is appearing through them already, spray some vinegar and scrub them away. 

 

Once the snow has melted off your roof, it should be checked for any loose shingles or damage, however, that's best left to a roofing company simply because it is safer for you.

 

Warmer weather commands you entertain not in your living room, but on your deck. Oxalic acid, which can be found in any hardware store, can be used to kill any microorganisms on your deck. After 24 hours, you can apply a stain to your deck to get it BBQ ready. Once the floor of your deck is refreshed, you can take out your patio furniture and prep it by wiping it down with soap and water, checking all the screws and fluffing your pillows.

 

Lastly, take some time to remove the layer of dead leaves and grass from your garden. A little of bit of weeding and gardening to expose the lush layers beneath will go a long way in making your yard and garden look spring-ready. Sharpen the blades of your lawn mower and perhaps change the oil too-mow low to remove the dead grass tops before you put out the picnic blankets and anchor in the soccer nets. Here comes the sun (George Harrison was right!), so grab your shades and enjoy the splendor of your Spring-ready yards and homes.

 

Mother Nature gifted us a particularly cold and bitter winter this year, so it truly feels great to be out in the sun in fewer layers. If you have any other tips to share about taking care of the exterior of your home, we'd love to hear them and pass them on to all our readers.

 

 

 

Mark

 

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Housing market set for favourable lead into spring

Detached prices stabilize as city-wide inventory trends down


After a long period of disconnect between supply and demand, Calgary's detached housing sector is firmly in balanced territory. Sales were still 10 per cent below long-term trends in March, but above levels seen in recent years, while average inventory declined compared to last year, supporting price stability in the detached market.

"It's not so much that demand went through the roof in March, but that we had less supply come onto the market, which is really helping to balance things out," said CREB® president David P. Brown. "These changes are lifting the cloud of uncertainty for housing consumers and nicely positioning our market as we move into the more active spring season."

Unadjusted detached benchmark prices totaled $503,900 in March, 0.4 per cent above last month and similar to levels recorded last year. Meanwhile, Apartment and attached prices continue to remain well below levels recorded last year.

"Market conditions are quite different in the apartment sector," said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. "The additional supply coming from the new home sector is not easily reversed and the added competition is continuing to weigh on prices in the higher density sectors of the market."

City-wide inventory levels totaled 5,114 in March, 16 per cent below last year's levels. This is primarily driven by the 25 and 17 per cent contraction in the detached and attached markets. Inventory levels in the ownership apartment sector remain three per cent higher then levels recorded last year.

"The housing market transition in the first quarter appears to be consistent with trends in the labour market," said Lurie. "However, the way the rest of the year unfolds will be largely determined by what happens in the next two quarters, as nearly 60 per cent of all housing sales typically occur in that time frame."

 

Click here to view the full City of Calgary monthly stats package. 

 

Click here to view the full Calgary region monthly stats package. 

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With phones in our pockets and purses, there is so much information we can find out for ourselves on any topic nowadays. But, though we are massively informed, we are not experts. A few times we've been asked 'why hire a realtor?' and so this week we'd thought we'd share some reasons why using our services is actually to your advantage when looking to buy or sell a home.

 

For starters, we have neighborhood knowledge. Though we can work in any area of the city, we become familiar with certain zones and neighborhoods and hence, are able to offer detailed information about crime, schools, demographics, neighborhood activities and trends. If you've followed along with our blogs, you will be aware that our area of expertise is Calgary's West side in the south west. 

 

We are able to provide price guidance and negotiation on your behalf. We hold your information confidentially, but we work to represent you and aim to get you the best price and deal in buying or selling your home. If you are happy with your price, we are happy. It's truly as simple as that. 

 

The amount of paperwork can be daunting, and luckily, we work hard to make it easier on you. We know what part of the paperwork is more urgent than others, what needs to be filed when, and ensure nothing is omitted. As a client, you are already swamped, celebrating, and emotionally engaged in your transaction and hence, we are more than happy and experienced to do the paperwork for you. 

 

We are educated and licensed to understand the industry. We are accountable to the Real Estate Council of Alberta and this body governs all that we do. We have invested the time to get licensed and continue to attend talks, seminars, and sessions within our brokerages to remain up to date. This also allows us to answer any questions you may have before, during, and after the purchase or sale. Questions always surface because there is so much going on during the transaction, and things often come up later that you might have not thought of earlier. 

 

The more we spend time with you, the more we can understand you as a client. Therefore, with our background knowledge and access to market information, we can save you time and act as a buffer to show you properties that suit your specifications the best. In the same breath, we can provide referrals for contractors or other services that may be required in your home, because we deal with such a wide range of issues.

 

And lastly, we truly like what we do. Buying a home is one of life's biggest purchases and experiences. Knowing that our time and knowledge facilitates to make this an easier process for you is the essence of our role. 

 

Mark. 

 

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We are down to our last neighborhood profile in southwest Calgary’s Westside-Discovery Ridge! This community sits at the most southern edge of this region and in a sense is isolated because it is bounded by Highway 8/Glenmore Trail to its north, 69th Street to its east, Rocky View county and Calgary's city limits to the west and the Tsuu T'ina First Nation reserve and a natural boundary of the Elbow River to its south. The map below portrays where it is located.

 

 

 

As we have included with all the other zones and communities, we will dissect a little of the demographic information on this community. Looking at Discovery Ridge, the last census of 2014 reflected a population of 4,462 in the community, Data shows 24% of the population is under 15 years old, 61% are between 20-64 years, and lastly 8% of the population is over 65 years. Generally speaking, Discovery Ridge is a young neighborhood. Eight-five percent of dwellings in all of Discovery Ridge are occupied by owners, which is very high even if it is one of the lowest percentages of owner-occupation on the hill. Like the other communities on the west side, there are a variety of dwelling types in the neighborhood but the majority of homes in Discovery Ridge are still single-family homes, making up 56% of the neighborhood. Duplexes and townhomes show a 6% and 4% representation, respectively, but another majority are apartments, coming in at whopping 34%.

 

The median age is 38 and is listed as a community that is overwhelmingly English-speaking since only 1% of the population doesn't speak English. The median household income is very comparable to the other communities on the hill coming in at $134,226.  According to CREB, 44 detached homes sold in 2016 ranging from $549,9000-$1,750,000 with an average price of $905,558. Attached homes numbered 4 in sales for 2016, ranging from $448,000-$685,000 with an average price of $541,000. For more information and as with all our information sources, you can view more concise details by visiting the City of Calgary’s neighborhood profiles, found here.

 

Moving onto crime details, below is a map depicting the crime stats over the last 6 months for Discovery Ridge. Being somewhat isolated, the crime stats are very low, deeming Discovry Ridge to be a very safe neighborhood. 

In terms of placement in the city, Discovery Ridge is truly perfectly placed for essentially everything. From the community, your first touch-point is Highway 8 so you can easily take a left and escape out of the city limits, or take a right and get closer to all amenities in town.

 

The 69th Street C-train station is just on the northern reach of 69 Street, straight out of the neighborhood. The most obvious shopping opportunities lie at the foot of the junction of Glenmore Trail with Highway 8 in West Hills and Signal Hill Shopping Centres. Aspen Landing Shopping Centre is very close by and offers grocery stores, coffee shops, dry cleaners, banks, doctors, dentists, dance studios, clothing stores, a spa and heaps more.

 

A newer Fire Station is just up 69 Street, and if you feel like going for a run, a swim, a climb, or skating with your kids, West Side Recreation Centre is literally a short drive away. Like all the other neighborhoods on this hill, Discovery Ridge is medically serviced by Foothills or Rocky View General Hospital, but also a quick drive into downtown to 4th Street will take you to the Sheldon M. Chumir Urgent Care Centre. 

 

Schools representing the private sector are found immediately within the area and kids are bussed or driven to the public sector schools. Very close by are Webber Academy and Calgary Academy, though closest along 17th Avenue is Rundle College. Nearby there is  Waldorf School and the Calgary French & International School, for those families that choose to send their kids to private schools. Lastly, should your child be athletically gifted, the Edge School for Athletes is a short drive up 101 Street which connects eventually to Highway 1 heading West. 

 

In the Calgary Public School district, Bishop Pinkham, Jennie ElliotCentral Memorial High School and Ernest Manning are all the schools covering all grades that feed into this area. 

 

In the Catholic District, St. GregoryHoly Name, Sir John Costello, and St. Michael's Catholic Schools are also taking in students. St. Mary's High School and Bishop Carroll are currently the designated high schools in the Catholic district for Discovery Ridge.

 

For places of worship, like all the communities on the West Side, there are many to choose from in the area. St. Michael's Catholic Church just up 85th Street is very close, as is the Bethel United Reformed Church, and the New Apostolic Church. A short drive south towards 17th Avenue, there is the Calgary Islamic Centre and on 69th Street there is the Korean Presbyterian Church and First Lutheran Church.

 

Residents of all the communities in Discovery Ridge are encouraged to join the Discovery Ridge Community Association. A household membership costs just $25 annually, but the perks are great and designed to be engaging and fun. Within the community itself is a gorgeous network of paths and area to access nature, known as Griffith Woods. Donated by the Griffith family from their estate, it has been preserved as the perfect escape to nature within City limits.

 

Thanks again for tuning in this week on Discovery Ridge and all the other profiles we have presented. If you have any questions about any of the communities, feel free to contact us at any time. Next week, we will write about the role and benefit of working with a realtor in the first place. We take lots of pride in doing the backstage work in making your experience of buying your dream home as smooth as possible. Shortly, we will also start moving east and profile all the communities from here to Marda Loop-lots of great information to share!!

 

 

Mark

 

 

 

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Detached sales activity boosts February housing market

 

 

After the first two months of the year, Calgary's detached sector continues to drive a slow transition in the housing market. February sales totaled 1,342 units, which is still 19 per cent below long-term averages, but an improvement over the past two years.

 

As sales kept trending upward, detached inventory levels continued to ease in February. These conditions caused months of supply to fall to 2.4 months, putting less downward pressure on pricing. Unadjusted detached benchmark prices totaled $501,900 in February, which is one per cent lower than prices recorded last year, but slightly higher than January figures.

 

"There seems to be a new sense of optimism these days," said CREB® president David P. Brown. "Some sellers are feeling upbeat about the changing landscape and the improved chances of selling their home. Other people are looking at the spring market with caution and wondering if we're going to see a higher than expected surge of listings. While there's less product on the market right now, sellers still need to be realistic with their pricing."

 

The amount of excess inventory eased in the overall market in February, setting the stage for a transition to a more stable market this year. Months of supply totaled 3.4 months, down from five months over last February. At the same time, the sales-to-new-listings ratio trended from a near record February low of 39 per cent last year to 55 per cent this February.

 

With sales improving and new listings and inventories contracting—two key measures of market balance, there's good evidence to show that the housing market has started a trend toward more balanced conditions.

 

"The transition in the housing market appears to be underway," said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lure. "However, it is important to note that this change is primarily being driven by improvements in the detached market and stability in the labour market."

 

"It will take some time for these conditions to translate into all housing segments and achieve price recovery," said Lurie. "But all indicators continue to point toward a slow transition from a contracting market toward one that is stabilizing at lower levels."

 

Click here to view the full City of Calgary monthly stats package. 

 

The full Calgary region monthly stats package will be available later today on creb.com.

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We have just a couple of neighborhoods left to go in our community profiles of Calgary's westside, so let's jump right in. This week's featured community is Signal Hill whose homes border the hills above Signal Hill Shopping Centre and can be seen from Sarcee Trail and Richmond Road.

 

One of the larger communities on the hill, Signal Hill is essentially made up of two neighborhoods, Sienna Hills and Signal Ridge. Being such a vast area, it is bordered to the north by 17th Avenue, 69th Street to the west, Sarcee Trail to the east and Richmond Road/Glenmore Trail to the south. Our map below shows its location on the West Side.

 

 

 

 

 

 

As we have included with the other zones and communities, we will dissect a little of the demographic information on this community. Looking at Signal Hill, the last census of 2014 reflected a population of 13,763 in the community, the largest on the hill. Data shows 17% of the population is under 15 years old, 58% are between 20-64 years, and lastly 17% of the population is over 65 years. Ninety-two percent of dwellings in all of Signal Hill are occupied by owners, which is very high and quite desirable. Like Springbank Hill, there are more variety of dwelling types in the community, but like all the communities on this hill, the majority of homes in Signal Hill are single-family homes, making up 78% of the neighborhood. Duplexes and townhomes show a 5% and 6% representation, respectively, but another majority are apartments, coming in at 11%.

 

The median age is 44 and is listed as a community that is overwhelmingly English-speaking since only 2% of the population doesn't speak English. The median household income is very comparable to the other communities on the hill coming in at $103,328.  According to CREB, 127 detached homes sold in 2016 with an average price of $666,866, with prices ranging from $479,000-$2,949,000. Attached homes sold 34 in number with an average price of $422,382 with a range between $250,000-$660,000. For more information and as with all our information sources, you can view more concise details by visiting the City of Calgary’s neighborhood profiles, found here.

 

Moving onto crime details, below is a map depicting the crime stats over the last 6 months for Signal Hill.

 

 

 

 

In terms of placement in the city, Signall Hill is perfectly placed for essentially everything. From the community, a quick drive east along Highway 8, Richmond Road, or 17th Ave connects you to downtown, but heading east to get out of town is just as fast and convenient.

 

The 69th Street C-train station is just on the edge of the community. The most obvious shopping opportunities lie below at the foot of the hill in West Hills and Signal Hill Shopping Centres. Aspen Landing Shopping Centre is very close by and offers grocery stores, coffee shops, dry cleaners, banks, doctors, dentists, dance studios, clothing stores, a spa and heaps more. Likewise immediately and conveniently within the neighborhood is West Market Square which has plenty to offer, including the highly reputable Sunterra Market. Everything is truly within reach. 

 

A newer Fire Station is just down 69 Street, and if you feel like going for a run, a swim, a climb, or skating with your kids, West Side Recreation Centre is literally a few steps away. Like all the other neighborhoods on this hill, Signal Hill is medically serviced by Foothills or Rockyview General Hospital, but also a quick drive into downtown to 4th Street will take you to the Sheldon M. Chumir Urgent Care Centre. 

 

Schools representing the private sector are found immediately within the area and kids are bussed or driven to the public sector schools. Very close by are Webber Academy and Calgary Academy, though closest along 17th Avenue is Rundle College. Near by there is  Waldorf School and the Calgary French & International Schoolfor those families that choose to send their kids to private schools. Lastly, should your child be athletically gifted, the Edge School for Athletes is a short drive down highway 1 heading West. 

 

In the Calgary Public School district, Battallion Park SchoolGlenbrook School, and A.E. Cross are designated elementary and junior high schools. The public high school designated throughout is Ernest Manning. 

 

In the Catholic District, St. Gregory and St. Thomas Aquinas are schools designated for these areas. In addition, Holy Name and St. Michael's Catholic Schools are also taking in students. St. Mary's High School and Bishop Carroll are currently the designated high schools in the Catholic district for Signal Hill.

 

For places of worship, like all the communities on the West Side, there are many to choose from in the area. St. Michael's Catholic Church just up 85th Street is very close, as is the Bethel United Reformed Church, and the New Apostolic Church. A short drive south towards 17th Avenue, there is the Calgary Islamic Centre and on 69th Street there is the Korean Presbyterian Church and First Lutheran Church.

 

Residents of all the communities in Signal Hill are encouraged to join the Signal Hill Community Association. A household membership costs just $25 annually, but the perks are great and designed to be engaging and fun.

 

Lastly, Signal Hill has a significant piece of history to boast of. The land to the southern ends of the community was known as the Sarcee Indian Reserve. During World War I, part of the land was leased to the Canadian Forces as a prospective training site for military personnel. The numbers on the hill that you can see from Signal Hill and West Hills shopping centers represent the numbers corresponding to the battalions that trained there. Forty-five thousand men belonging to the 151st, 137th, 113th, and 51st battalions spent their time in training camps in this region before going abroad to fight as Canadian soldiers. There are a total of 16,000 whitewashed stones commemorating these soldiers. Only '113' remains in its original location while the other three sets of numbers have been moved from their original location to where they are today. Every Remembrance Day there are celebrations and memorials taking place in Batallion Park-be sure to join in this year! 

 

Thanks again for tuning in this week on Signal Hill-we hope you have learned something new about this dynamic community. Next week we review Discovery Ridge-stay tuned! 

 

 

Mark

 

 

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Springbank Hill is up for our analysis and review this week, so without further delay, here are some stats and details we have uncovered for you.

 

One of the larger communities on the hill, Springbank Hill is conglomerate of several communities located in the vicinity-Springborough, Summit of Montreux, Springbank Hill, The Slopes, Anatapi, and Spring Valley. Being such a vast area, it is bordered to the north by 17th Avenue, 69th Street to the east, Highway 8 (Glenmore Trail) to the south, and on the west side, it is bordered by 101st Street. Our map below shows its location on the West Side.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 As we have included with the other zones and communities, we will dissect a little of the demographic information on this community. Looking at Springbank Hill, the last census of 2014 reflected a population of 9,640 in the community, where 23% of the population is under 15 years old, 63% are between 20-64 years, and lastly 6% of the population is over 65 years. Eighty-six percent of dwellings in all of the sub-communities of Springbank Hill are occupied by owners, which is quite desirable. Being so large, there is more variety of dwelling types in the community, but like all the communities on this hill, the majority of homes in Springbank Hill are single-family homes, making up 76% of the neighborhood. Duplexes and townhomes show a 6% and 2% representation, respectively, but another majority are apartments, coming in at 16%.

 

The median age is 35 and is listed as a community that is overwhelmingly english-speaking, since only 2% of the population doesn't speak English. The median household income is very comparable and almost equal to surrounding communities, and is coming in at $135,385.00. According to CREB, 138 detached homes sold in 2016 in Springbank Hill with a range price of $479,000-$2,949,000. For attached homes, 24 properties changed title in 2016 with a range price of $355,000-$1,100,000. For more information and as with all our information sources, you can view more concise details by visiting the City of Calgary’s neighborhood profiles, found here.

 

Moving onto crime details, below is a map depicting the crime stats over the last 6 months for Springbank Hill. As seen on the map, in the last 6 months, there have only been 33 reported incidents, the majority being theft from which is the most common offense on the West Side.

 

 

 

 

In terms of placement in the city, Springbank Hill is perfectly placed for downtown access and for a quick zip out of town. From the community, a quick drive east along Highway 8 or 17th Ave connects you to downtown, but the same roads heading west allow you to escape the city and hit the mountains in no time. Best of all, upon returning from the hills, you’re home in minutes upon entering city limits-this is a huge attraction for any and all of the communities on this side of town!

 

The 69th Street C-train station is just up the hill and connected by buses, Aspen Landing Shopping Centre is very close by and offers grocery stores, coffee shops, dry cleaners, banks, doctors, dentists, dance studios, clothing stores, a spa and heaps more. Take a look at the Landing's website to become more familiar with what is literally offered there and if you can’t find what you’re looking for, then West Hills and Signal Hill Shopping Centres will surely get you covered. Likewise and very close by, West Market Square has plenty to offer, including the highly reputable Sunterra Market. Everything is truly within reach. 

 

A newer Fire Station is just down 69 Street, and if you feel like going for a run, a swim, a climb, or skating with your kids, West Side Recreation Centre is literally a few minute’s drive away. Like all the other neighborhoods on this hill, Springbank Hill is medically serviced by Foothills or Rockyview General Hospital, but also a quick drive into downtown to 4th Street will take you to the Sheldon M. Chumir Urgent Care Centre. 

 

Schools representing the private sector are found immediately within the area and kids are bussed or driven to the public sector schools. With so many kids in the area, residents are truly blessed to have the opportunity to decide where to send their kids. Very close by are Webber Academy and Calgary Academy, though closest along 17th Avenue is Rundle College. Close by there is of course Waldorf School and the Calgary French & International School, for those families that choose to send their kids to private schools. Lastly, should your child be athletically gifted, the Edge School for Athletes is a short drive down highway 1 heading West. 

 

In the Calgary Public School district, Battallion Park School, Glenbrook School, and A.E. Cross are designated elementary and junior high schools. Griffith Woods School is scheduled to be opened in September 2017 and will be K-9 school servicing the community of Springbank Hill. Of course, the public high school designated throughout is Ernest Manning. 

 

In the Catholic District, St. Gregory and Sir John Costello are schools designated for these areas. In addition, Holy Name and St. Michael's Catholic Schools are also taking in students. St. Mary's High School and Bishop Carroll are currently the designated high schools in the Catholic district for Springbank Hill.

 

For places of worship, like all the communities on the West Side, there are many to choose from in the area. St. Michael's Catholic Church just up 85th Street is very close, as is the Bethel United Reformed Church, and the New Apostolic Church. A short drive south towards 17th Avenue, there is the Calgary Islamic Centre and on 69th Street there is the Korean Presbyterian Church and First Lutheran Church.

 

Residents of all the communities in Springbank Hill are encouraged to join the Spring Bank Hill Community Association. A household membership costs just $25 annually, but the perks are great and designed to be engaging and fun.

 

Thanks again for tuning in this week-Springbank Hill has a variety of beautiful houses and locations for you to pick from to find your dream home, so if there is anything you'd like to see or if you have any questions, I'm always available to talk or meet up. Next week, we profile Signal Hill. Stay tuned, stay warm! 

 

 

Mark

 

 

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For the fourth consecutive month, housing inventory levels have recorded year-over-year declines. At 4,112 total units, January's inventory was 18 per cent below last year's levels. 


"While housing conditions continue to favour buyers, a slow transition toward more balanced conditions is helping to ease downward pressure on home prices," said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. "Conditions have improved over last year, but people need to remember that last year's market was one of the weakest on record. Despite the appearance of a major shift in activity, the transition in the housing market is going to be a slow process."

 

January sales totaled 947 units, 24 per cent above last year, but 21 per cent below 10-year averages for the month. Sales activity improved across all product types, but only when compared to the near record lows that occurred in January 2016.

 

The detached segment of the market is demonstrating the most improvement.  Sales activity totalled 584 units in January, a considerable improvement over the 466 sales recorded last year. Inventories have also declined pushing the months of supply to 3.2 months well below the 5.4 months recorded in January 2016.  

"This past month showed how the market never stands still," said CREB® president David P. Brown. "The market isn't expected to be as unpredictable in 2017, but it's early in the year and there are still lots of unknowns that will shape decision-making for consumers."

 

"Every transaction is a personal decision and anyone going through the process of buying and selling real estate will be trying to make the best decision for their family. They need to consider their long-term objectives and think about the price they are willing to accept or pay for a home."

 

City-wide benchmark prices totaled $437,400, 0.16 per cent lower than last month and 2.82 per cent lower than last year's levels. Since recent highs in 2014, residential prices have declined from a low of 4.9 per cent in the detached sector to highs of 11.5 per cent in the apartment condominium market.

 

Click here to view the full City of Calgary monthly stats package.

 

Click here to view the full Calgary region monthly stats package.

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The Story of Calgary's West 17th Lofts.

 

Last weekend we held an Open House in a unit in the West 17th Lofts that we are representing. It was a very busy afternoon that garnered heaps of questions about the development, hence this week we thought we'd take a break from our community profiles and instead, provide some information about this popular cluster of Executive townhomes.

 

This development of executive loft style townhomes is located on the corner of 17th Avenue and 69th Street SW. The developer was Pacer Signature Homes Inc. and construction was completed in 2006.  The complex contains 3 unique floor plans-the Monte Carlo, the Manhattan and the Malibu, all with abundant sizing ranging from 3187, 3197 and 3340 sqft, respectively.The complex consists of 44 units amongst 7 buildings with a central courtyard.

 

West17th Lofts Calgary.

 

 

 

The standard features of these lofts are extensive and of very high quality, containing top-of-the-line Kohler plumbing fixtures, Wolf and Sub Zero appliances, hardwood throughout with carpet in the master bedroom, ceramic tiles in the bathrooms, foyer and entry, and personal elevators.

 

West 17th Lofts Calgary

 

If you live in Aspen Woods or in the general area, I’m sure you would have seen the construction that took place over the summer.  The building integrity had suffered from the weight of the natural brick on the exterior and a remediation plan was deployed.  Therefore, a special assessment had been established in the amount of $7.0 million for the complex as of March 21, 2016.  A loan was approved by the owners up to the full amount for use while the legal action is being resolved.  The current owners will not immediately pay for the special assessment as the condo board is optimistic that the lawsuit against the developer will be successful and the special assessment will be reduced significantly. 

 

The reconstruction had been fully completed by the end of November 2016 where the process included the installation of tele-posts and engineered header beams in each double garage.  Every unit now has 2 single-doors for the double garage as opposed to the original alternating design of 2 single-doors and 1 double-door.  All of the windows, brick and stone were replaced on the garage side of the buildings. The scaffolding and tarps have been removed and the complex is technically in better condition than when it was when originally built.  The current owners are now waiting for the resolution of the litigation to see if they will be responsible for any residual amount of the special assessment. It is important to mention the condo board insisted the reserve fund remain untouched, therefore the funds that have been accumulating over the past 10 years are still intact.

 

West 17th Lofts Calgary Lukwinski Real Estate

 

 

 

At present, we have a listing in the complex at 517 Aspen Meadows Manor SW that is south facing with abundant natural light coming through. The floor design is the Monte Carlo with the kitchen on the main floor, 3 bedrooms with an amazing 3rd level loft area that is set up for entertaining and enjoying your favorite film. We love showing this unit off and therefore, if you have any further questions about the listing or the development in general, please do not hesitate to give me a call or reach me at mlukwinski@remax.net.

 

Mark.

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We are just under three weeks into the new year and CREB has just recently released their 2017 Forecast Report which summarizes the outlook for the year ahead based on various economic indicators. Though you can click here to read, analyze, and become familiar with their results more closely, we wanted to bring you some key points that we felt were of strong interest. 

 

The past year was a tough one on our city-we all felt it in one way or another. And though changes in our economy may not be happening as fast as we would like or need, the uplifting thing to remember is that positive changes are coming.

Stabilized crude prices will be the catalyst to solving so many issues-most of 2016 saw crude prices hovering and fluctuating between $29-$50 throughout the year. With some relief, it is forecasted that for 2017, prices will stabilize around the $50-$55 mark.

 

 

A more stable price in crude oil would soften and lower our city's current unemployment rate which hit the 10% mark at the end of 2016. CREB is predicting a decline in the unemployment rate to around 7.8% and though this doesn't remove the effects of what happened in 2016 across Calgary, 'softer unemployment rates should help prevent any further contractions in housing demand' (CREB 2017), and so this is positive to hear.

 

After a long period of economic downturn, Calgary's housing market is expected to see some price stability in 2017, but not across all market segments and property types. Both detached and attached prices remain unchanged over 2016 levels, while apartment prices are forecasted to contract by another two per cent.

 

 

"The transition in the housing market will be a slow process," said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. "We are entering the year with high unemployment rates and the possibility that job growth will not occur until the latter portion of 2017. These conditions will continue to weigh on housing demand, but supply is adjusting to weaker sales activity, which will eventually translate into price stability."

 

City-wide sales are forecasted to total 18,335 units in 2017, a three per cent gain over 2016, but 12 per cent below long-term averages. This modest demand change will merge with declining listings and easing inventory in the new home market to support more balanced conditions and prevent further downward pressure on prices. 

 

 

"This year is about moving away from extremely challenging conditions," said 2017 CREB®president David P. Brown. "The transition is going to take some time, which means sellers need to stick with the fundamentals of pricing their homes correctly against other comparable product in the market. There's still lots of choice out there for buyers, but major price declines are unlikely in most segments."

 

Alberta's economy was much softer than many predicted over the past two years, since as mentioned above, prolonged weakness in energy weighed on other sectors of the economy, including housing. Since the start of the downturn in late 2014, price adjustments have ranged from a low of nearly five per cent in the detached sector, to a high of 11 per cent in the apartment sector. The amount of price change between these different areas of the market was based on how much oversupply there was in each sector at any given time.

 

Our housing market is moving toward a new equilibrium, but that shift is heavily dependent on stability in the energy sector and overall labour markets. There is also considerable risk from recent government policy changes that could derail expected gains in the second half of 2017. It's a new outlook this year, but the market risks shouldn't be overlooked. 

 

For the expanded report click the following: Full 2017 Forecast Report and as always, please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions regarding the Forecast Report.

 

Mark

 

 

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Another week down, another deep freeze has settled in (but looks to be on the way out!), and so we've got another neighborhood for us to profile in Calgary's South West. We hope you've enjoyed the profies of the different neighborhoods so far that we have published in Calgary's WestSide. Last week we described and detailed Aspen Woods and this week we move to the east and profile Strathcona and Christie Park. Both neighborhoods are older and hence more established, as Strathcona Park was established in 1980, and Christie Park came a few years later, in 1990. Though both communities are more mature, Strathcona Park has experienced recent development in the areas west of 69th Street over the last few years and hence has a newer, younger portion to it.

 

As seen in the maps below, Strathcona Park is bounded by Bow Trail to the north, Sarcee Trail to the east, 69th Street in the west, and the community of Christie Park to the south. Christie Park are just an extrapolation of this to the south and is further bounded by Sarcee Trail in the east, 69th Street to the west, 17th Ave to the south, and Strathcona Park to the north.

 

As we have included with the other zones and communities, we will dissect a little of the demographic information on these two areas. Looking at Strathcona Park first, the last census of 2014 reflected a population of 7140 in the community, where 20% of the population is under 15 years old, 62% are between 20-64 years, and lastly 10% of the population is over 65 years. Ninety-one percent of dwellings in Strathcona Park are occupied by owners, which is again, incredibly high. The majority of dwelling types in Strathcona Park are single-family homes, making up 84% of the neighborhood, with both duplexes and townhomes being represented fairly equally at 7% and 8%, respectively. The median age is 40 and is listed as a community that is overwhelmingly english-speaking, since only 1% of the population doesn't speak English. The median household income is $135,372.00, and according to CREB, 73 detached homes sold in 2016 in Strathcona Park with an average price of $711,251, ranging from $435,500 - $1,425,000. Eighteen attached homes sold in the community in 2016, with an average price of $815,739, ranging from $599,800 - $1,325,500.

 

Christie Park by comparison is a much smaller community with only 2217 people living there. Their demographics reflect an older population with 24% being above 65 years, 56% being between 20-64, and only 13% being below 15 years of age. Owner occupancy is high with 93% of the homes being lived in by owners and where 70% of homes are single-family type of dwellings, 14% are townhomes, and 7% are duplexes. The median age of residents in Christie Park is 49 years of age with a median household income of $129,500 and where again 1% of the population doesn't speak English. In terms of house sale statistics in 2016, detached homes numbered 18 with an average of $815,739,  with a range of $599,800 - $1,325,500. For attached homes in 2016, 8 homes sold in 2016 with an average price of $475,875, ranging from $320,000 - $629,000. As in previous profiles, you can access these links to view more detailed information about Strathcona Park and Christie Park. 


Moving onto crime details, below are two maps depicting the crime stats over the last 6 months for Strathcona Park and Christie Park. Both neighborhoods are deemed quite safe and just like the other communities we have profiled, crime majorly consists of theft or theft from vehicle. 



 

In terms of placement in the city, both communities are extremely attractive and sought after due to their proximity to the mountains, but more especially due to its proximity to downtown. In Strathcona Park, a quick drive south in the neighborhood along Strathcona Drive allows you to connect with Bow Trail which then quickly takes you into downtown. Christie Park allows you to take either Bow Trail or 17th Ave to get anywhere in the city and is quickly accessible. The 69th Street C-train station is within view depending on where you live in Christie Park, and is most easily within walking distance.  Aspen Landing Shopping Centre is very close by and offers grocery stores, coffee shops, dry cleaners, banks, doctors, dentists, dance studios, clothing stores, a spa and heaps more. Take a look at the Landing's website to become more familiar with what is literally offered minutes from your own doorstep. Strathcona Square is literally in the middle of the now-expanded Strathcona Park community and has been around for many years, offering coffee shops, grocery stores, banks, a drug store, medical offices and more. Likewise, West Market Square has plenty to offer, including the highly reputable Sunterra Market and of course, further south down the hill is the readily established West Hills Shopping Centre. A Fire Station is just down 69 Street, and if you feel like going for a run, a swim, a climb, or skating with your kids, West Side Recreation Centre is literally within view of your home, depending which corner of Christie Park you choose to live in. Like all the other neighborhoods on this hill, both communities are medically serviced by Foothills or Rockyview General Hospital, but also a quick drive into downtown to 4th Street will take you to the Sheldon M. Chumir Urgent Care Centre. 

 

Schools representing the private sector are found immediately within the area and kids are bussed or driven to the public sector schools. With so many kids in the area, residents are truly blessed to have the opportunity to decide where to send their kids. Very close by are Webber Academy and Calgary Academy, though closest along 17th Avenue is Rundle College. Close by there is of course Waldorf School and the Calgary French & International Schoolfor those families that choose to send their kids to private schools. Lastly, should your child be athletically gifted, the Edge School for Athletes is a short drive down highway 1 heading West. 

 

In the Calgary Public School district, the Dr. Roberta Bondar School has just opened attendance to this school is open to children on the western side of Strathcona Park, west of 69th Street. Currently, Roberta Bondar is a K-4 school but within two years will be a K-6 school. Olympic HeightsVincent Massey and Wildwood Schools are also accepting students from Strathcona Park and Christie Park, and of course, the public high school designated for these two communities is Ernest Manning. 

 

In the Catholic District, St. Gregory and Sir John Costello are schools designated for these areas. In addition, Holy Name and St. Michael's Catholic Schools are also taking in students, and in some cases, St. Joan of ArcSt. Mary's High School and Bishop Carroll are currently the designated high schools in the Catholic district for Strathcona Park and Christie Park.

 

For places of worship, like all the communities on the West Side, there are many to choose from in the area. St. Michael's Catholic Church just up 85th Street is very close, as is the Bethel United Reformed Church, and the New Apostolic Church. A short drive south towards 17th Avenue, there is the Calgary Islamic Centre and on 69th Street there is the Korean Presbyterian Church and First Lutheran Church.

 

Residents of both communities are encouraged to join the SCA Community Association, which encompasses Strathcona Park, Christie Parks, and Aspen. A family membership costs just $10 annually, but the benefits are enormous. So, take a drive or walk through these mature neighborhoods and see the value that they have to offer on Calgary's WestSide. As always, thanks for tuning in and I'm happy to answer any questions you may have about these communities or any others! 

 

Mark

 



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