Condo conundrum

A closer look at the numbers behind Calgary’s apartment-style housing market

Statistics Canada recently released an interesting piece of information regarding Calgary’s residential real estate market that went relatively unnoticed.

According to the government agency, the share of households in the Calgary census metropolitan area living in condominiums was 21.8 per cent in 2016. That represented the second highest percentage in the country, behind only Vancouver at 30.6 per cent, and was much higher than the national average of 13.3 per cent.

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The big picture

Inventory increases and sales drop in September, but overall sales for the year remain higher than last year

Strong gains in the first half of 2017 have put Calgary year-to-date sales at seven per cent above last years’ levels and 11 per cent below long-term averages, but challenges remain with easing sales and rising new listings.

Inventories rose across all property types to 6,861 units, while both apartment- and attached-style properties saw the highest inventory on record for the month of September.

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No parking, no problem

For Sue and Jason Bissonnette, East Village condo investment was too good to pass up

Forty-somethings Sue and Jason Bissonnette love to travel and experience new things. They own vacation properties around the world, including a three-season recreation trailer at B.C.’s Moyie Lake and two timeshare properties in the Caribbean. When they’re not travelling, they spend most of their time hanging out in Airdrie, where they own a two-storey, 2,000-square-foot home that they share with their two kids – a 19-year-old daughter and a 22-year-old son. Always on the lookout for new investment opportunities, the couple couldn’t resist exploring the options when they were introduced to Knightsbridge Homes’ N3 condominium project. They were attracted to its East Village location – steps away from the downtown core and the LRT – and the car-free lifestyle. A Car2Go membership, furniture package from Ikea and a Biria urban bicycle sweetened the deal. In the end, the Bissonnettes purchased a 498-square-foot, two-bedroom, one-bathroom condo on the 14th floor. (more…)

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Diminutive design

Making the most of a small living space

Visitors to this year’s Calgary Fall Home Show might have come across a feature area called Small Space Living.

Designed by Rosalyn Lazaruk, owner of Wicket Blue Interiors, the 1,000-square-foot display showcased ways to optimize a smaller living space.

Lazaruk says people downsizing into a smaller house or condominium don’t have to give up style and livability just because they have less square footage.

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Living the high life

Patricia and Michael Insole went from renters to buyers and never looked back

For Patricia and Michael Insole, timing was everything when it came to purchasing their penthouse condo in Calgary’s inner-city Beltline neighbourhood.

They weren’t really looking to buy a home, but when the building where they were renting became a condominium conversion, they jumped at the chance to purchase. They gathered a down payment, borrowing from family and friends, and purchased their 1,700-square-foot condo on the 15th floor. (more…)

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