Searching for a good housing deal in Calgary is like searching for the Holy Grail, but they are out there and innovative buyers may just stumble upon them.
Since the slowing of the housing market, many Calgarians have been able to have more choice in the types of homes they are able to afford.
“As for areas in Calgary, everyone has a budget, it really depends on what you are looking for,” says Tanya Eklund, realtor for Re/Max Real Estate Central. Foreclosures have always been thought of as being a good deal.
“This is in most cases a myth,” says Eklund. Foreclosures still go through the same sales process as any other house.
Because the bank technically owns these homes, they are still trying to get the best price they can for them.
Condos are still among the more popular type of home for most younger and first time buyers in Calgary.
Condos require little maintenance and can be found for under the $300,000 mark in most areas.
Fixer-ups have also been seen as a way to save a bit of money, but Eklund advices only a more seasoned investor to consider this option.
“Many young people just entering the market would find them daunting,” says Eklund.
Buyers still need to be wary of deals that seem too good to be true. When Kristian Jones and her husband tried to purchase a home last summer, they ran into a lot of problems.
“Everything we found was decrepit, falling apart or smaller than a closet and was ill-equipped to accommodate two adults,” said Jones.
Then they came across a condo in the city’s southwest for under $200,000.
“We thought it was a miracle,” says Jones.
It later turns out that the management company had started the year in debt and was asking the Jones’ to pay upwards of $25,000 for condo repairs, upgrades and renovations to the building out of their own pockets.
Both being students, Jones and her husband were unprepared for the extra hidden costs involved with that property.
A year after beginning the search, the Jones’ remain hopefully that they will stumble upon a more solid deal now that the market has softened.
Housing deals in Calgary are out there, but it takes a lot of patience and research to find them and finding them is well worth the work.
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