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Offices turned residential real estate in Alberta Cow Town

Calgary residents will be getting a vast choice of new places to call home. One the biggest real estate trusts in the country is planning on re-purposing four offices buildings located downtown into residential real estate units. The Alberta company is also planning on reclassifying commercially zoned land near Stampede Station to build a multifamily development consisting of 300 units. 

Calgary revamped its land use bylaw, which makes the process easier to get the green light to re-purpose office buildings -- good news for developers as the office vacancy rate in the downtown core hovers at around 25 percent. In most cases now, only a building permit is needed. The real estate company in question recently sold three office, seven retail and 10 industrial areas in Alberta, reducing its net operating income in the province from 39 to 26 percent.

Alberta site of Passive House residential real estate pilot

The Passive House is being tested in the Calgary area. A residential real estate project, the Passive House was developed in Germany and is essentially a house out of a box. The Alberta pilot project aims to provide education regarding construction methods to trade suppliers. A Passive House apparently used 90 percent less energy than new builds since it utilizes sun and shade efficiently as heat sources for cooking and heat recovery.

In fact, the house is so efficient it doesn't need a standard heating system. The pilot house doesn't have a furnace, and fresh air is supplied through a ventilation system. The home is air tight so a heat recovery system reuses heat already in the exhaust system. The Passive Home is being touted as the greenest home in Alberta to date.

More than $1 billion in real estate transactions in AB capital

Things are looking rosy on the real estate front in Wild Rose Country. Alberta's capital city has seen an increase in real estate transactions in the industrial, commercial and investment (ICI) sector along with increased sales in the office, multi-residential, retail and industrial areas. In fact, sales from these sectors totalled more than $1 billion from January to June this year. That figure is up from just over $712 million during the same period in 2016.

Statistics show that investment overall is strong. However, some areas are selling more aggressively than others, depending upon where they're located within Edmonton. Investors are feeling more comfortable putting their money into the retail sector. In fact, there have been three recent sales worth more than $30 million each.

Lakefront properties hot in Alberta residential real estate

Lakefront property is at a premium in Alberta. Since supply is limited, those property values have risen by more than 80 percent the last couple years, according to a real estate company report. Residential real estate on the lake just about 65 kilometers outside Edmonton has risen by about $36,000 in a matter of a year and more than that since 2015. Because of Alberta's limited lakefront property near major cities, the province's prices are the highest in Canada,

A local Realtor says his website has about 50,000 hits every year with 10,000 potential buyers. He says he sold 43 properties on the lake in 2016 with a combined value of $18 million. Stats show that buyers of these properties are between the ages of 36 and 51 with children, and many indicated vacation and lifestyle as their main purposes for purchasing lakefront homes.

Big bang for the buck in Alberta residential real estate

Alberta seems to be where it's at for property these days. After rallying from an economic slump, the residential real estate sector -- and all real estate in general -- looks to be on the rise in White Rose Country. Low gas and oil prices in Alberta are also helping to heighten overall market.

In fact, this year could be one of the best yet to buy real estate in Alberta, and the best places to search for deals are in the Edmonton and Calgary areas. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) stats show that properties between $400,000 and $500,000 are still strong and may be prudent investments. Deals are around, especially in single-family suites. 

Commercial real estate biting back in Alberta's capital

Building values in Edmonton are on the rise and that is readily apparent in the retail sector. Transactions in Alberta's capital were up 39 percent in the first half of 2017, showing a growing optimism regarding commercial real estate in the city. Data from a local real estate investment company shows sales are on the upswing. The retail sector is leading the way with $1.2 billion over all areas and up from more than $189 billion last year.

So far this year, there have been 41 transactions in the retail sector, up from 33 in the middle of last year. Thirty-two of those 41 transactions were accounted for by 7-Eleven convenience stores. In fact, retail deals were up 59 percent over the same time in 2016. The numbers went from more than $158 million in 2016 to more than $370 million this year.

Commercial real estate: Lethbridge industry on the upswing

If the community of Lethbridge is any indication, business is starting to look much brighter. The Alberta community's industrial sector is starting to turn a profit once again. The commercial real estate market is beginning to look healthy.

An investment group recently sold an industrial warehouse in Lethbridge that it bought three years ago. The company made a gross profit of more than $2 million upon the closing of the deal. Experts are not surprised by that amount considering data that shows the recent strength in the industrial and commercial real estate markets in the southern Alberta community.

Cochrane leading way for real estate transactions in Alberta

Alberta has had some recent economic troubles, especially with the dip in the oil market. But if the community of Cochrane is any indication, things are looking up in Alberta all around, especially in regard to real estate transactions. With little hoopla, Cochrane has seen its population increase by almost 50 per cent over the last six years with a 4.5 per cent growth in 2016 alone with no signs of slowing down.

Things look very healthy for Cochrane's potential real estate transactions in the near future. The community has had a growth strategy in place since 2013 with a goal of having a population of 66,000 by 2062 and at the rate things are moving, that target will be met, according to experts. In fact, multiple developments are slated for the area and more than 4,600 new homes have been added to the community's inventory since 2010 with resale numbers burgeoning.

Residential real estate rebuilds ahead of schedule in the Fort

The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation Inc. (CMHC) has said the once fire-ravaged Fort McMurray is rebuilding quicker than experts anticipated. Fort McMurray, in Alberta's north, had about 2,500 homes destroyed by a massive wildfire last year and is in the midst of rebuilding its residential real estate sector. A recent CMHC report indicated rebuilding has begun on 844 homes razed by the fire in May 2016.

Ninety-nine per cent of the burnt-out homes will be rebuilt, with a small number of lots earmarked for a flood defense zone. If building continues at the same rate, the CMHC predicts that rebuilding will be completed by 2021 at the latest. In fact, the Fort will see the highest level of residential real estate construction starts this year since 2009 when the community was in the midst of an oil boom.

Residential real estate on the upswing in Alberta

Canada's real estate market continues on a strong front, posting gains in the second quarter of this year. Alberta seems to be leading the pack in terms of residential real estate sales. The statistics, provided by a major real estate brokerage firm, point to a continuation of the same in the second half of this year with Alberta sales definitely on the rebound from an economic downturn.

There seems to be a provincial balance taking shape in the country. Some scalding markets, like those in Toronto and Vancouver, are becoming more tepid, while those that have been depressed, like Alberta, are beginning to rebound. This makes for a very healthy overall real estate market in the nation.

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