Buying a Home in Calgary? Here’s What You Should Know.

February 1, 2019

Looking for a new house in Calgary is always a fun time. You get to experience walking through all different models and makes of homes, looking at different options. Will you find a townhouse in Calgary? Would an apartment work for your needs? As fun as it can be, the thrill of hunting for a new Calgary house can be daunting as well. This is not just an everyday purchase. This could be one of the biggest decisions of your life.

As you search through Calgary home listings to hopefully find that perfect place, there a few things to keep in mind as you look. Keep these notes at the back of your mind while you shop for your next place to live.

Market Trends

Calgary's real estate market can be tricky. It's full of ups and downs. Unlike other cities, Calgary has distinct markers that make a difference when looking for your next home. For example, Calgary is a city closely tied with the oil market, so the homes available can fluctuate with the price of oil. For example, when the price of oil crashed in 2014, the city was hit hard. Oil companies had to make drastic cuts to staffing, thousands were laid off in a city-wide crash that drastically affected housing prices.

Market trends on a shorter timeline also occur here. For example, Calgary has three major universities and colleges, such as the University of Calgary, that attract tens of thousands of international students every year. As such, the housing market is flooded with homes for sale in the spring as students move away. The market faces increased demand for housing as 50,000 new students come to the city and need places to live. Time your search with the market to take advantage of the rise and fall in home prices.

Calgary Communities

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There are almost 200 distinct communities around the city, and each community offers something different for your needs. Consider more than just the home, but where your new home is situated. It could make or break your decision.on that big purchase.

For example, the southeast of Calgary is very popular for new families. The communities of Auburn Bay, Cranston, or Mahogany are designed to house families who'd like some room to grow. The community has several parks and playgrounds and the new housing is designed to be affordable for those who are just starting out.

Consider also the southwest of Calgary, which has more established homes. The location provides great access to Fish Creek Park, Glenmore Reservoir, and many other public places. This might be a location for those who want something a little more mature with more amenities close at hand.

Always take into account the neighbourhood, the comparables of that community, and the type of neighbours that you will love with.  

Your Home's Amenities

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What is your situation in life right now? Are you upgrading to find more room for a growing family? Or maybe you need to slow down the pace of life, downgrading to a small place with less upkeep and space. Take time to plan what your home's amenities should include.

The best way to do this is before you start your search. Make a list of the amenities that you home MUST have.

  • Number of Bedrooms
  • Public Transportation
  • School Access
  • Shopping Nearby
  • Finished Basement
  • Fenced Yard
  • Attached Garage

This is the list of items that you will not budge on, the items that determine whether the house is going to fit your needs, or it's going to be discarded.

Next, you're going to write a list of the items that you'd LIKE to have, but that aren't essential.

  • Bonus Room
  • New Upgrades
  • Storage in the basement
  • Third storey
  • Walk-out basement

Whatever it is that is on your WANTS list, but not absolutely critical to your purchase.

This provides you with a guide to use when you're looking at homes. You can quickly discard the houses that don't fit your needs, even if they are absolutely beautiful. It saves you time and money to focus your attention on the homes that actually matter to your search.

Professional Agents

Above all, there is nothing as beneficial to your Calgary home search than using a trusted Calgary real estate agent. They are here to help you, to make sense of the market, to work with your needs, and to pair you up with your dream home. They will also save you thousands of dollars just by their negotiation skills and networking connections.

Remember that not all real estate agencies are the same, and some have niches to target a demographic. Do your due diligence to find the perfect agent for what you need, especially in the area you're looking in. It will make such a difference to your final purchase and to your bank balance.

Calgary is an exceptional place to live, ranked 4th best city to live in throughout the world. This city has incredible potential to be Canada's best city, and it's perfect for your next home. Just keep these tips in mind as you search for your dream home. And soon, we'll be happy to welcome you as Calgary's newest resident.

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