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March 24, 2017

Budget 2017: A ‘Complete’ National Housing Strategy is Key to Addressing Housing Affordability - Home Builders

Commentary: CHBA issued this media release today in response to Budget 2017. No changes to mortgage rules, investment in better housing data and analysis, support for infrastructure and transit, and investment in social/affordable housing were among the highlights of the Budget for our industry.....more...

Calgary exploring whether to build charging station network for electric cars – Calgary Herald

“Widespread electric vehicle-charging network throughout southern Alberta could be sparked by city efforts gauging its feasibility.”....more...

Mahogany and Cornerstone lead new single-family building permit applications – Calgary Herald

“A southeast lake community and a second-year community in the northeast have attracted the highest demand for new single-family homes in Calgary this year.”....more...

Reinventing High River – CREB Now

“After spending more than $100 million on flood mitigation to protect new and existing residents and businesses, High River is back a bit bigger, and definitely better, than before.”....more...

March 23, 2017

Trump's travel bans and cuts to science could create a Canadian brain gain – CBC News

Between funding cuts for science-based programs, from the environment to health, to the latest executive order banning people from six Muslim-majority countries from getting visas to go to the U.S. for 90 days. Scientists are looking elsewhere for study and work.....more...

The right kind of infrastructure borrowing — and the wrong kind - iPolitics

“Strategic infrastructure investments that unlock private sector investment and drive productivity are essential to raising Canada’s long-term potential growth.” “It is entirely appropriate to borrow today to fund infrastructure investments that generate a concrete future revenue stream. However, neither governments nor private enterprises should borrow to fund investment in infrastructure that is not capable of generating future revenue streams.”....more...

Cranston-Seton interchange gets green light after developer kicks in $13M – Calgary Herald

Proof that the province, city and industry can collaborate to get badly needed infrastructure built. “A southeast Calgary interchange that was slated to begin construction several years down the road has been accelerated after developers stepped forward with $13 million, prompting a commitment from the province.”....more...

March 22, 2017

The rise of longer car loans, a major risk to household finances - Globe and Mail

“House prices, mortgage balances, and debt-to-income ratios get all the headlines, but car loans have quietly emerged as one of the major risks to Canadians’ household finances. Nearly three-quarters – 72% – of new-vehicle loans taken out last year were for six years or longer.” CHBA Commentary: CHBA notes that, in contrast with depreciating assets, homeownership is the long-proven basis of household asset growth. It is much more than a liability. Canadians by and large appreciate and benefit from the “forced-savings” aspect of homeownership. It is widely recognized as being simply not the same as other kinds of debt.....more...

Canada will work with provinces on housing affordability: spokeswoman – Reuters Canada

“Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau is committed to working with provinces to tackle housing affordability…”....more...

Calgary likes the ring of Olympic bid, new poll finds – Calgary Herald

A poll by Postmedia found that 61 per cent of those surveyed were keen on The City bidding to host the 2026 Winter Olympic Games.....more...

Building Our City – Smarter Growth Initiative

“Guy Huntingford, CEO of BILD Calgary Region, shares his insights on the future of development in Calgary”....more...

March 20, 2017

Five of Calgary's residential companies lauded among nation's best managed businesses – Calgary Herald

“Jayman Built Group of Companies, Trico Homes, Morrison Homes, Cardel Lifestyles, and Hopewell Group of Companies were all named winners of the 2017 Canada’s Best Managed Companies awards program through Deloitte. The annual list, recognizing businesses owned in Canada with revenues of more than $15 million, bases its awards on capability, strategy and return on investment.”....more...

Productivity, NZE, skilled labor shortages: Perfect storm or perfect opportunity? – Canadian Contractor

“As we near the conclusion of the century’s second decade in 2020, it shouldn’t be hard for the residential construction industry to see changes coming down the road. Those contractors who wish to thrive and prosper in the years ahead should seriously consider the big moves that await, and start planning to take advantage.”....more...

March 17, 2017

Airdrie’s Ravenswood earns ringing endorsement from its residents

“The three things most often highlighted by residents in Ravenswood are the amenities, incredible location and the community’s design.”....more...

Monthly Survey of Manufacturing, January 2017 – Stats Canada

“Manufacturing sales rose for the third consecutive month, up 0.6% to $53.8 billion in January.”....more...

$2 million announced for senior and affordable housing in Calgary with more expected – CBC News

“The money is part of the provincial government's $1.2 billion Alberta Jobs Plan, which the government said will help renew or build more than 6,000 affordable housing units over the next five years.”....more...

Alberta Budget Announcement 2017 – MNP

“On Thursday, March 16, 2017, Joe Ceci, Alberta’s President of Treasury Board and Minister of Finance, tabled the province’s 2017 Budget. Working to recover from a dramatic and prolonged slide in oil prices, Budget 2017 delivers no new tax increases and projects a deficit of $10.3 billion for 2017-18.”....more...

Calgary's City Centre Transformation – Everyday Tourist

“It will be interesting to see in 50 or 100 years what historians say about the early 21st-century transformation of Calgary’s City Centre into a mosaic of vibrant urban neighbourhoods.”....more...

March 16, 2017

Calgary on path to become a hub for green energy; study – Metro News

“Calgary could become a premiere green energy hub in North America, according to a new study by environmental strategy group Delphi.”....more...

People and places are key to Calgary’s business attraction – Calgary Economic Development

“What separates Calgary from the crowd when companies in the Silicon Valley or other key tech hubs are looking to grow their business are the availability of highly educated workers and the wealth of premium office and industrial space.”....more...

Is This The Future Of Real Estate Marketing? – Forbes

Experiencing home buying in a new way. Now it is possible to view the inside of a home any place at any time with 3D virtual reality.....more...

How new arenas boost real estate values – YPNextHome

Report shows that projects, such as new arenas and sports stadiums have the potential to boost surrounding real estate values.....more...

March 13, 2017

Mortgage Professionals Canada's update on impact of recent mortgage changes – CNW

“Wait and evaluate” the impact on markets of recent changes before considering further changes to mortgage rules was a CHBA mantra in this week’s Forum for Growth meetings with MPs and Senators. CEO Kevin Lee has fostered a closer working relationship with Mortgage Professionals Canada and other national associations engaged in parallel representations to the federal government.....more...

March 14, 2017

City mashing up residential and commercial zones with new mixed-use district – Metro News

“New designation meant to encourage transit oriented development, walkable communities.”....more...

Calgary Airport LRT might link to all three CTrain lines: Keating – Metro News

“City administration is beginning its baseline plans of how an airport transit line might work.”....more...

Energy is Money – CREB Now

“The province has announced details of energy savings programs aimed directly at all Alberta residents, whether they are homeowners, renters, or businesses.”....more...

March 13, 2017

Mortgage Professionals Canada's update on impact of recent mortgage changes – CNW

“Wait and evaluate” the impact on markets of recent changes before considering further changes to mortgage rules was a CHBA mantra in this week’s Forum for Growth meetings with MPs and Senators. CEO Kevin Lee has fostered a closer working relationship with Mortgage Professionals Canada and other national associations engaged in parallel representations to the federal government.....more...

Calgary green bin coming to apartments, duplexes and condos – Metro Calgary

“Coupled with the price of housing are two other factors: incomes that are not keeping pace with housing prices, and mortgage rules that affect who is allowed to enter the housing market. So what can be done to help people achieve the dream of home ownership? Well, let’s try to eliminate some of the roadblocks in front of potential home buyers. And there’s only one set of people who control constraints – government.”....more...

Single-family construction starts pick up in Calgary area – Calgary Herald

“Construction starts on single-family homes for the Calgary area in February marked the highest year over year increase in nearly five years.”....more...

And the finalists for the SAM Awards are… - Calgary Herald

“The annual competition through BILD (Building Industry Land Development) Calgary Region, honours the top performances in home design, community development, renovation, sales, marketing, and industry partners from the previous year.”....more...

March 9, 2017

Councillors hope for 'neat projects' for downtown business if they cut land use red tape – Metro News

“The city says a rapidly evolving market means their current land-use bylaws can't keep pace. The significance of the vacancy rate in the downtown mean the city needs to employ "quick and bold" action.”....more...

Calgary green bin coming to apartments, duplexes and condos – Metro Calgary

“A City of Calgary Waste and Recycling Bylaw change mean as of Nov. 1 all homes, including multi-family complexes, will need to separate food and yard waste from garbage.”....more...

Forum for Growth 2017 A Success: Reflects Enhanced Relationship with Liberal Government – Canadian Home Builders’ Association

“This year’s Forum for Growth saw members and leadership from across the country meet with some 80 MPs and Senators, through the course of the day at meetings and at a packed eeception with MPs and their staff from the three major parties.”....more...

We can fix our overheated housing markets. Here's how. – iPolitics

“Canada needs strong, competitive cities with housing that the middle class can afford to own, and which meets their needs.”....more...

March 8, 2017

Canadian housing starts trend upwards in February - CMHC

“Most of the housing starts this year have been in the single-detached market. New single-detached inventories have been relatively stable while supply in the resale market has moved lower. This has contributed to the year-over-year increase in single starts. Multi-unit starts, on the other hand, have pulled back from the previous year as its inventories are well above historical averages.”....more...

Housing starts show economic improvement – The OWL

“Housing starts offer a good way to assess economic confidence, as they give us an indication as to where we are in the economic cycle. After a rough January, homebuilders managed to find new projects in February, suggesting Alberta is starting to emerge from two years of recession.”....more...

March 7, 2017

Homebuilders may face a new license requirement in Alberta – Global News

“The homebuilding industry supports a set of standards to set a level of professionalism province-wide.”....more...

March 6, 2017

The Housing Supply Deficit - Not Enough Homes for Families with Young Children – Canadian Home Builders’ Association

This report collects unique CHBA research and data that helps explain particular issues regarding housing supply, and why CHBA asserts that if current trends continue, Canada will see a shortfall of some 300,000 family-oriented homes over the next decade.....more...

Business leaders take part in summit to help pull Calgary out of the downturn – CTV News

“Over 150 business and government leaders are meeting Thursday in Calgary to discuss a new plan to help the city get out of the economic downturn.”....more...

Alberta government working on licensing for home builders – CBC News

“The Alberta government is meeting with home builders and consumers and has launched a survey to potentially require builders to have a license.”....more...

March 2, 2017

Energy sector held back Canada’s economy in 2016 – The OWL

“Alberta has traditionally played a huge role as one of the engines of Canada’s economy. But the slowdown in the energy sector over the last few years has held back national economic growth—underscoring the significance of the energy sector to the entire Canadian economy.”....more...

New housing report shows many Calgarians priced out of the market – Metro Calgary

“The findings reinforce the objectives in our Corporate Affordable Housing Strategy and will guide us as we move forward with our strategy to make affordable housing more readily available to Calgarians.”....more...

Coun. Andre Chabot to run for mayor of Calgary – Metro Calgary

“Coun. Andre Chabot said he wants to usher in a new era of collaboration at city hall – one that benefits all Calgarians.”....more...

Finnigan: Homeownership a wise goal for all Canadians – RENX.ca

Times have changed, but what remains the same is the wisdom of homeownership as a lifestyle and financial investment. Homeowners build equity over time with something that is tangible, rather than elusive such as stocks and mutual funds. In addition, you get to live in your investment, and when you sell your principal residence, your gain from the sale is tax free.....more...

Millennials are buying homes but many have parental help: survey – Globe and Mail

64% of millennials who don’t own homes will need a higher salary in order to buy, but the two-pronged problem of sluggish wage growth and rising property values “makes it unlikely that all will be able to achieve their goal.” Commentary: The growing numbers of young Canadian families with children continue to recognize homeownership as beneficial overall and a preferred financial foundation for their lives. However, they are disproportionally affected by stricter mortgage insurance regulations. As a result, they will often go to further lengths to get into homeownership. Instead of trying to suppress this demographic demand, CHBA advocates that governments at all levels work with industry to address supply and other “new fundamentals” to account for these realities.....more...

March 1, 2017

Alberta back to growth in 2017 – The OWL

According to ATB Financial’s latest Alberta Economic Outlook, 2017 is expected to slowly get better.....more...

February 28, 2017

Alberta unveils $36-million solar rebate plan for homes and businesses – Calgary Herald

Details on eligibility and installation will be ironed out in the coming months. The new program will lead to solar panels on 10,000 Alberta rooftops by 2020. By 2019, the program is expected to create up to 900 jobs, cut installation rates by between 25-30%, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of 100,000 passenger vehicles.....more...

Building codes across Canada to be updated to reflect climate change – Global News

The National Research Council, which sets “model codes” for building, energy, plumbing and fire, has started working on updating some (or potentially all) of those documents to reflect the fact that Canada is seeing more heavy rain, floods, high winds, snow, ice, temperature swings and all-around extreme weather.....more...

CMHC releases updated road map to homeownership – CMHC

“CMHC is providing guidance to Canadians who are considering buying a home with our updated Homebuying Step by Step guide.”....more...

Possible Green Line realignment will buy Ramsay more time on its ARP – Metro News

“There may be a silver lining in the controversy growing over the potential realignment of the Green Line through Ramsay. That community had been working with the city on an Area Redevelopment Plan (ARP) over the past year. City administration now says they’ll be asking council for more time to complete that document, which was originally slated to go for approval in May.”....more...

Minister Morneau Announces Relief for Fort McMurray Families and Western Canadian Entrepreneurs - Department of Finance Canada

“The Government has established new minimum import prices for drywall imported from the U.S. for use in Western Canada that are 32.17% lower than the original tariffs. This approach will result in the same level of duty reduction as recommended by the CITT, while addressing potential circumvention concerns. In addition, the Government will use the approximately $12 million in anti-dumping duties collected to provide relief to builders and contractors who were unable to pass through elevated drywall costs, due to fixed-price building contracts. The program will be administered by Western Economic Diversification Canada and is expected to start mid-2017.”....more...

Five questions with Calgary Economic Development head Mary Moran – The Globe and Mail

“Mary Moran is on a mission. The president and chief executive officer of Calgary Economic Development is touring major U.S. cities in a bid to woo technology companies to recession-weary Calgary. This week, she visited Silicon Valley; her next stops include Seattle, Portland, Chicago, New York and Boston.”....more...

February 24, 2017

Should Calgary Transit Think Outside the Bus? – Everyday Tourist

Should Transit think outside the bus when it comes to service to new communities, late night and other low ridership routes?....more...

Study: Transition from temporary foreign workers to permanent residents – Statistics Canada

From 1995 to 1999, about 296,000 temporary foreign workers were admitted to Canada, 9% of which became permanent residents within five years. From 2005 to 2009, over 530,000 temporary foreign workers came to Canada, with 21% becoming permanent residents. Commentary: CHBA continues to advocate the importance of immigration programs to contribute effectively to replacing the 118,000 retirees in the industry over the next ten years.....more...

Developer predicts another Alberta boom – The Globe and Mail

Lamb Development is in the process of acquiring two more development sites in Calgary, taking his current development investment in the city to $350-million. “One will be a very high-end building in the city centre, while the other will be another high-rise, 40 storeys, in Victoria Park,” he says.....more...

Economic growth in Alberta forecast at 2.8 percent this year, the fastest of all provinces – iNews 880AM

“A new economic outlook for the Canadian provinces finds Alberta is poised to have the strongest growth this year mainly due to fast-rising oil production.”....more...

February 23, 2017

Green Line LRT project considers alternate route in Victoria Park and Ramsay – City of Calgary

“Over the course of our detailed evaluation, we’ve discovered more technical and operational constraints for the alignment east of 4 St S.E. (the East Victoria Park area) than we had originally anticipated, requiring us to consider alternative options.”....more...

Alberta economy on road to recovery, conference board says – Edmonton Journal

“Alberta should post Canada’s fastest economic growth this year as the energy industry improves and consumer spending picks up, a Conference Board of Canada report says.”....more...

Electoral boundaries for Banff-Cochrane likely to shift – Cochrane Eagle

“The Banff-Cochrane constituency is likely to see new electoral boundaries in time for the 2019 provincial election.”....more...

February 22, 2017

Calgary Transit: The Electronic Fare Saga – Everyday Tourist

Is Calgary late to the transit smart card party, or is #yyc smart to wait for everyone else to iron out the kinks?....more...

CHBA CEO talks about the Extensive Housing Elements of a Poverty Reduction Strategy with Parliamentary Committee – Canadian Home Builders’ Association

“Addressing the entire housing continuum, right up into affordability in market-rate rental and homeownership, is critical to both the government’s housing strategy and the poverty reduction strategy. The ripple effects of deteriorating market-rate affordability and barriers to homeownership cascade right down to those in housing need, and impede progress in poverty reduction if not addressed.” Commentary: In addition to emphasizing the need to align Poverty Reduction and National Housing Strategy goals and actions in his remarks to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Human Resources, CHBA CEO Kevin Lee also highlighted the importance of affordability and pursuing innovative solutions like a Portable Housing Benefit, Shared Equity Down Payment Plans, tax rules for purpose-built rental and accessory suites, and a national NIMBY-to-YIMBY campaign.....more...

February 21, 2017

Temporary market to open before Symons Valley Ranch redevelopment – Calgary Herald

“The Symons Valley Ranch farmers’ market may be down but it’s not out after being devastated by fire last month.”....more...

New construction of duplexes steps up in Calgary – Calgary Herald

“While shovels turned for fewer townhomes and apartment-style condos in the Calgary area last month, new construction of duplexes ramped up.”....more...

6 Things: Calgary's multi-family real estate market – Calgary Herald

“More apartments, duplexes, and townhomes were sold through Calgary’s resale home market in January than the same month in 2016. The biggest increase in sales came from townhomes, improving 30 per cent to 129 transactions from 99 year over year, says the Calgary Real Estate Board.”....more...

February 17, 2017

New Arts and Culture District – Smarter Growth Initiative

“The success in the East Village has inspired a vision for Victoria Park, a plan to build a new cultural and entertainment district in the Rivers District.”....more...

[PDF] Look Up in the Sky: It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane… It’s a Toronto Housing Bubble – BMO Capital Markets

“Commentary: The banks are speaking in more concerned tones about the GTA market. The question is how this will affect future government housing policy. What’s clear is that more family-oriented and mixed-income housing supply is needed in the region. The old rules for assessing housing markets no longer apply. Toronto is a world-class city that is experiencing growing pains from lack of planning and infrastructure investment – lack of serviced land, excessive red tape, out-of-date zoning and NIMBYism are all contributing to a supply shortage and escalating prices.”....more...

February 15, 2017

CMHC CEO Evan Siddall testifies before Finance Committee regarding Housing – Canadian Home Builders’ Association

Yesterday CMHC CEO Evan Siddall spoke before the Finance Committee for their study on issues surrounding markets; the impact of housing on the financial system and challenges surrounding access to home ownership. Mr. Siddall noted that CMHC did know that changes to mortgage insurance regulations would affect first-time buyers, and that it was necessary to “remove the punch bowl” to curb indebtedness. CMHC has seen an approximately 15% to 20% reduction in insurance applications, with the majority of those being first-time buyers. Commentary: CHBA has argued that it is more critical than ever to ensure that first-time buyers have opportunities for homeownership, and has recommendations that can support access without increasing market risk. Mr. Siddall did echo the recommendation of other presenters who, like CHBA, are calling for the government to wait and evaluate the impact on markets of recent changes before considering further changes to mortgage rules.....more...

Manufacturing set to take-off this year – The Owl

“All in all, the most recent manufacturing report shows that manufacturing could finally see some much-needed growth this year. Of course, the low loonie will also benefit our exporters and help keep our goods competitive globally and a general improvement in economic conditions will prove beneficial, too.”....more...

What you should know before renovating your home – Calgary City News Blog

“Home renovations can be a lot of fun – styling your home with your own look and personality. As you begin planning your next improvement project, here are three things you should consider.”....more...

February 14, 2017

How much is too much? Minimalists of all ages downsize – Calgary Herald

“Intrigued by minimalist living, the couple has decided to downsize their home, and subsequently their mortgage, substantially.”....more...

There’s something about Chestermere – Creb Now

“You just feel so much more connected here. It’s a fun, vibrant place to be and it’s very family-centric.” “Located a quick 25-minute commute from downtown Calgary, Chestermere is a haven of old-world possibilities anchored by a beach and pathway-rimmed 750-acre lake, which prominently graces the centre of the city. Armstrong says that the city’s appeal revolves around the athletic and outdoor oriented opportunities that the city offers.”....more...

MacLean: Alberta is an environmental leader, not an embarrassing cousin (with poll) – Calgary Herald

“And it’s not just about oil and gas. Albertans are doing great environmental work in agriculture, forestry, wildlife conservation and transportation, to name a few. Take a look at the recipients of the annual Emerald Awards, an Alberta foundation that has been recognizing “outstanding environmental achievements” across Alberta each year since 1992. It’s a real eye-opener.”....more...

Cash-only more risk than reward; Diligence a big part of hiring a competent contractor – Herald Homes

“Hiring tradespeople can be the riskiest thing you do as a homeowner. Whether or not it’s safe or dangerous depends on how you do it, and the trend toward under-the-table cash renovations is making the problem worse.”....more...

Transforming towers: Might Calgary convert vacant downtown offices into condos? – CBC News

With office vacancy rates in downtown Calgary at an all-time high, could our city take a page from Pittsburgh and turn commercial buildings into condo or apartments?....more...

February 13, 2017

Take your affordable housing project from vision to reality - CMHC

“CMHC’s Seed Funding is financial assistance for activities that will help create new affordable housing units and assist existing housing projects to remain viable and affordable.”....more...

Job market unchanged in January – The OWL

“With stability in the energy sector and business confidence gradually improving this year, the job market is unlikely to show further deterioration. That is, the worst is over. On the other hand, employers may be hesitant to start hiring back too many workers—suggesting a few more difficult months ahead for job seekers.”....more...

City asking for feedback on housing options – City View Airdrie

“The City of Airdrie is asking residents to provide feedback on housing options and needs in the community. An online survey is available on the city’s website at airdrie.ca until Feb. 28.”....more...

February 9, 2017

Calgary’s growth concentrated in the core and outer edges: Census – Metro Calgary

“The core has seen continued growth, and many new communities at the edges of the city are also registering growth as new builds go up.”....more...

Cochrane development holds strong – Cochrane Eagle

“The 2011 census pins Cochrane's population at 17,580. Fast forward to the 2016 census data which has a population recorded at 25,122.”....more...

Province seeking public input on draft MGA regulations – Pr Record Gazette

“Albertans have until March 31 to submit their thoughts on the first batch of draft regulations that will work alongside the Municipal Government Act.”....more...

February 8, 2017

Canada’s population grew by 1.7 million between 2011 and 2016 – Global News

"But Western Canada – especially Alberta – is booming. That province’s population grew by a whopping 11.6 per cent between 2011 and 2016, with much of that growth happening in Calgary, where the population grew by 14.6 per cent – the fastest-growing metropolitan area in the country."....more...

Opportunity blowing the wind for renewables in Calgary – Calgary Economic Development

“While Calgary is known for developing oil and gas, Lambert says there’s a “surprising community” of renewable energy businesses and the election of an NDP government in 2015 has buffeted the wind industry.”....more...

With new arena complex still under consideration, city commits $150 million to Victoria Park – Calgary Herald

“As the Calgary Flames’ ownership group considers a new event centre at Victoria Park, the city’s land developer will create a blueprint for development in the downtown neighbourhood, putting up $150 million for local improvements.”....more...

February 7, 2017

Cash-only renovations more risk than reward – Ottawa Citizen

“Hiring tradespeople can be the riskiest thing you do as a homeowner. Whether or not it’s safe or dangerous depends on how you do it, and the trend towards under-the-table cash renovations is making the problem worse. What you might not realize is the hidden risks of cash-only home improvements and construction. It opens you up to personal financial disaster in a way that few people realize.”....more...

Canadian household confidence posts biggest gain since July – The Globe and Mail

“Household confidence rose the most in half a year as Canadians reported more optimism about the economy and the housing market…”....more...

Application supported – Rocky View Weekly

“Rocky View County (RVC) council has voted unanimously to support a funding application submitted from the City of Airdrie to the Alberta Community Partnership Grant (ACP) that will allow for the development of a North Calgary Region Transportation Priorities Plan.”....more...

Value added in Airdrie – Creb Now

“Friedman and his wife exemplify the reason many folks opt to buy a home in one of Calgary’s satellite communities: affordability.”....more...

Government Welcomes the Advisory Council on Economic Growth's Second Wave of Recommendations - Department of Finance Canada

“Finance Minister Bill Morneau welcomed recommendations that focused on unlocking innovation to drive growth; bringing more Canadians into the labour force; building a highly skilled Canadian workforce for the jobs of tomorrow; and, strengthening Canada's trading partnerships.” “CHBA Commentary: Many of the Council’s themed recommendations align very well with CHBA’s established proposals for the residential industry – coordinated action to protect an engine of growth, supporting innovation and developing skilled workers.”....more...

Mortgage Professionals Canada Calls for Halt to Further Mortgage Tightening – Canadian Mortgage Trends

“CHBA Commentary: More organizations have echoed CHBA’s call for the government to “do no more” with mortgage insurance regulations, and wait to evaluate long-term market impacts of recent changes. The potential scope and nature of long-term risks associated with these policies are only starting to become clear, in the form of quite varying impacts in different regions of the country and for different demographic groups.”....more...

February 6, 2017

Debunking urban myth about developers’ pockets – Calgary Sun

“When developers have plans for projects, whether it’s a new community with a couple thousand homes in the suburbs or a high-rise tower with a couple hundred condos in the inner-city, they certainly meet with city councillors to talk about their projects.” “City council, however, represents only the final gate at city hall that developers must go through to get to work.”....more...

Carrington offers new downtown north – Calgary Sun

“A new community in Calgary’s northwest will be officially introduced on Feb. 11 as the Genstar Development Company celebrates the grand opening of the showhome parade in Carrington.”....more...

Westfield II transcends generations – Calgary Sun

“New homes accommodating multi-generational living are growing in popularity in Calgary and region, and Trico Homes has released a new model home to meet the demand.”....more...

Calgary affordable housing providers seek carbon tax solution – Metro Calgary

“Providers of affordable housing in Calgary say the carbon levy is cutting into their ability to keep costs down for some of the city’s most vulnerable people.”....more...

February 3, 2017

[Video] CHBA and Nova Scotia HBA Testify before Finance Committee – Canadian Home Builders’ Association

"Simply put, housing matters. It matters to the economy, it matters to our huge industry of small businesses that supports over a million workers, it matters to Canadians who recognize home ownership is the cornerstone of attaining the middle class, and it matters that all Canadians have a security of a decent roof over their heads." - Bob Finnigan, CHBANational president....more...

Who's 'middle class'? It's complicated, says Morneau – iPolitics.ca

“Middle-class Canadians can generally be identified by the values they hold and the lifestyle they aspire to.” CHBA Commentary: In its representations to government, CHBA has emphasized that Canadians recognize homeownership as the cornerstone of attaining “middle class”. Access to housing for first-time buyers is essential not only to young Canadians and their families, but for the economy as well.....more...

CED president sees travel ban as opportunity for economic diversification in Calgary – iNews880

“A controversial travel ban imposed by U.S. President Donald Trump is being seen as a window for economic diversification in Calgary.”....more...

February 2, 2017

January market improves over last year - CREB

"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....more...

Edmonton and Calgary have more of an impact nationally – The OWL

“In Canada, much of the focus is placed on Toronto, Vancouver and even Montreal, but new data shows that both Edmonton and Calgary are starting to have a greater economic impact.”....more...

HAUTE TO TROT – Creb Now

“A Sotheby’s International Realty Canada report released this month noted 19 condos priced at more than $1 million sold in 2016, which was consistent when compared year-over-year.”....more...

Province’s updated flood regulations could drive up property taxes: Clark – Metro Calgary

“The provincial government is updating its flood maps, but Alberta Party leader Greg Clark is warning that it could have dire implications for tax rates in Calgary.”....more...

Federal budget to include reforms to temporary foreign worker program - Globe and Mail

“CHBA continues to advocate for immigration programs that will contribute effectively to replacing the 118,000 retirees in the industry over the next ten years. The federal Budget is expected to come down on February 21 or 22.”....more...

Minister Duclos launches a call for nominations for an Advisory Committee on Homelessness - Employment and Social Development Canada

CHBA urges any member that is involved in addressing homelessness in their community to contact the national office (crenna@chba.ca) about this opportunity. It is important that the private sector have a voice in these discussions to ensure that this initiative, along with the National Housing Strategy, addresses the entire housing continuum.....more...

January 31, 2017

Built Green continues to grow interest with Calgary's new home buyers – Calgary Herald

Calgary and area builders enrolled more single-family homes in the Built Green Canada program in 2016 than a year earlier.....more...

Calgary: Time to think outside the car? – Everyday Tourist

“Obviously some Calgarians have already or are now making the decision to live with one less car - or without a car at all. This number is going to increase as car-sharing programs expand the geographic area they operate in. As well, new competition will result in more cars and better pricing, which will make car-sharing even more attractive to more Calgarians.”....more...

CHBA pres to talk housing affordability with feds – Condo Business

“Bob Finnigan, president of CHBA, heads to Ottawa this week to talk to the federal finance committee about housing affordability. Of particular concern for the group is one of the latest changes to mortgage rules, which expanded an existing stress test from a limited pool of prospective home buyers to all insured borrowers.”....more...

January 30, 2017

12 things to know about Calgary's real estate leaders – Calgary Herald

The real estate leaders in 2016 for most expensive neighbourhood, new listing leader and more.....more...

Calgary home prices stabilizing, says CMHC – CTV News

“The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation says the price of homes in Calgary is balancing out and isn’t as artificially inflated as they were in years past.”....more...

Calgary's single-family building starts picked up in second half of 2016 – Calgary Herald

“While new construction of single-family homes in the Calgary area slid 15 per cent, activity stepped up over the second half of 2016.”....more...

Final report on Western Canadian drywall tariff released: The 43 per-cent solution – Canadian Contractor

Basically, the new tariff rate will be 43%. However, there’s more to it than just that. Click to read a summary of the report by John Bleasby.....more...

January 26, 2017

Order of Canada Appointments – The Governor General of Canada

Congratulations to Reza Nasseri, CEO and founder of Landmark Group for being appointed to the Order of Canada. Recognised for his innovative leadership in the construction industry and for his sustained commitment to charitable and community initiatives.....more...

Canadian House Price Growth Remains Elevated: CMHC Reports - CMHC

“Evidence of problematic conditions has decreased in Calgary since the previous assessment as some housing markets in oil-dependent centres are now rebalancing.”....more...

Alberta, the only province to see annual earnings decline – The OWL

“The fall in earnings over the past year is that it should make Alberta-based businesses more competitive. Many companies have had to lower their operating costs which will make them more efficient. And even though earnings continue to trend lower, Albertans are still the best paid among Canada’s provinces.”....more...

Calgary Olympic Bid Exploration Committee looking for architects, engineers – Metro News

“The Olympic Bid Committee has effectively opened their $2.3 million dollar floodgates to companies and contractors who will help them see if the city’s infrastructure is fit for world-fame.”....more...

Peak Millennial? Cities Can’t Assume a Continued Boost From the Young – New York Times

A number of demographers, along with economists and real estate consultants, are starting to contemplate what urban cores will look like now that the millennial generation is cresting. Many in this generation are aging from their 20s into the more traditionally suburban child-raising years. Commentary: This phenomenon is not limited to the U.S. - CHBA has been considering the needs of Millennials as they form new households and begin having children and the demands on housing. CHBA research estimates a 300,000 shortfall in the number of needed family-friendly homes across the country over the next ten years.....more...

January 24, 2017

Analysis: A Calgary Olympic bid: Can it pull us out of the doldrums a second time? – CBC News

“As city council debates and studies the possibility of another Olympics, there's much to consider. Politics, economics, social cost, social benefit. It's a roll of the dice, but with a billion-dollar price tag. But given the parallels between Calgary then, and Calgary now, it's not difficult to see how the spectre of a major spectacle has got Calgarians talking.”...more...

Trudeau cabinet retreat to confront the reality of Trump’s presidency – National Newswatch

Canada’s relations with the new administration are expected to top the agenda. The retreat comes hours after Trump says that he will soon meet separately with both Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto to begin renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement. CHBA Commentary: The Cabinet retreat is expected to cover trade issues relevant to residential construction, such as the impact of renegotiating NAFTA with the new US Administration, which affects the price of drywall and softwood lumber. Also, both the US and Canadian governments are looking to P3s to finance infrastructure—phase 2 of Trudeau’s infrastructure investment plans include establishing the Canadian Infrastructure Bank. This could have a significant impact on urban development, and hopefully positive long-term housing affordability and choice.....more...

Homeowners ill-informed about flood compensation, poll suggests – CBC News

Internal poll for Public Safety Canada reveals lack of awareness among Canadians about flood compensation. 40% of respondents thought the government would compensate victims of major overland flooding. For the vast majority of people, this is not the case.....more...

Poised for growth – Creb Now

“While Calgary’s downtown office sector and its plunging vacancy rates overshadowed all commercial real estate activity in 2016, the city’s industrial market has better weathered the storm and is poised to grow in 2017, say experts.”....more...

January 23, 2017

Drywall Duty Impact Report - Canadian International Trade Tribunal

“Late on January 19th, the CITT released its report to the government on the impact of duties on U.S. drywall being imported into Western Canada, which includes further details on implementation of its recommendations. The report is as expected, and it is now up to the Minister of Finance to render a final decision on the recommendations. Upon review of this report, CHBA legal counsel noted the following: ““[W]e should recognize the CHBA's important contribution to this Inquiry ... The CHBA was the only party to argue that consumers were not willing to absorb all these costs. The CITT recognized that consumers would be forced to accept higher costs and that this would cause harm … and would slow the residential housing market.”...more...

Ceci non-committal on taxing power as he takes over city charter file – Calgary Herald

“Finance Minister Joe Ceci says he won’t prejudge discussions on new taxing powers for Calgary and Edmonton as he takes over the responsibility for city charters.”....more...

Calgary's multi-family starts cool due to ample inventory – Calgary Herald

“The large number of homes for sale helped cool demand for new multi-family development in the Calgary area last year, says a federal agency.”....more...

Mahogany led 2016 for new single-family homes – Calgary Herald

“A southeast lake community by Hopewell Residential was once again the leader in demand for new single-family homes in Calgary.”....more...

Milke: Cap Calgary’s property taxes — via a referendum – Calgary Herald

“If Calgarians wonder how to get city hall’s attention on property taxes, they might look to 1970s California for inspiration.” “California voters had an option. State legislation then and now allows for citizen-initiated referendums, the results of which bind the state legislature.”....more...

Community conveniences help attract new home owners – Calgary Herald

“Deciding on a new condo or townhome goes beyond the floor plan and its specifications. These choices can also be about the community and conveniences nearby.”....more...

January 20, 2017

Ollenberger: Developers Do Listen and Make Changes! – Everyday Tourist

“I truly think the vast majority of developers are quite open to input on their proposals, and genuinely work with communities to achieve a good balance of all considerations, but no project can be perfect for everyone,” says Ollenberger....more...

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley shuffles cabinet, splits Human Services ministry – Global News

Congratulations to the new Minister of Municipal Affairs, Shaye Anderson. Thank you to Danielle Larivee for all the work you did with the industry, and good luck in your new role.....more...

Calgary’s head office strategy pays big dividends – Calgary Economic Development

“Corporate head offices are crucial contributors to a local economy. They stimulate growth of small businesses and encourage the creation of industry clusters that attract, or incubate, more head offices.”....more...

Home Renovation Financing Options - CMHC

“There are many different reasons to renovate a home: to save energy (and save on utility bills), to make room for a growing family, to improve safety or increase the resale value of your home, or simply to bring a fresh new look to your home. There are also a number of different ways to finance your renovation.”....more...

January 19, 2017

What is RenoMark and why is it Important? – Hearth and Home Fireplace

“Not all renovation companies are created equal, so it’s essential to practice your due diligence when choosing who to work with, and that’s where RenoMark™ shines.”....more...

Monetary Policy Report - January 2017 – Bank of Canada

“The BoC has previously signaled support for the government’s measures to cool housing markets, and for the first time in many years did not reference market or household imbalances as significant risks to the economy. Instead, the Bank highlighted the near-term negative impact of weaker-than-expected household spending on real GDP.”....more...

Manufacturing gains some traction – The OWL

“Even though the latest manufacturing data is good news, it’s still too soon to call the end of this downturn.”....more...

January 17, 2017

Industry association takes on new name — BILD Calgary Region – Calgary Herald

BILD Calgary Region is the new name, standing for Building Industry Land Development.....more...

Companies increasing energy storage developments as renewables grow – Metro News

“The need for energy storage comes from the temporary and sometimes unpredictable nature of renewable energy. The wind doesn't always blow and the sun doesn't always shine.”;....more...

Transit project in the works for Cochrane – Rocky View Weekly

“The Town of Cochrane is one step closer to a local transit system following a council decision at a meeting Jan. 9. With council’s direction, administration will amend the town’s provincial Green Transit Incentives Program (GreenTRIP) application to reflect a new approach to use the $9 million in funding approved in 2011.”....more...

Migration flow from Saskatchewan remains positive – The OWL

“Rider Nation may rule the hearts of thousands of former Saskatchewan residents. But in this economic downturn, not even football seems to be drawing them home.”....more...

Calgary transportation boss advises fix for cul-de-sac angled parking issue – Metro News

“Coun. Shane Keating and transportation manager Mac Logan agree a local improvement approach to allow cul-de-sac angled parking quelch fix community strife.”....more...

Foreign buyers driving Calgary’s luxury real estate market – The Globe and Mail

“While real estate purchases by foreign buyers divides opinion in cities such as Vancouver and Toronto, where the activity has been blamed for driving up prices, Alberta is welcoming off-shore buyers with open arms.”....more...

City to vote on revised Highland Park golf course development plan in northwest Calgary – CBC News

“City council will have another look at a proposal Monday for redeveloping a former golf course in northwest Calgary.”....more...

January 13, 2017

Residential land prices outpacing that of new houses – The OWL

“The impact of the 2009-10 recession was much more acute, with both land and house prices plunging. The 2015-16 recession, though, appears to have affected housing prices only. Land prices continue to rise steadily, even throughout the current downturn.”....more...

Buying a Home in 2017? These 5 Things Could Jeopardize Your Mortgage

“Your ability to buy a home rests on the numbers and documentation your mortgage lender has. If there is a change to any of these, your chances of buying a home can be jeopardized. This means that when there is a change to your credit, debit, income assets, or job during the escrow process, you might not be able to buy that house and you’ll risk losing your money. Here are five things to watch out for.”....more...

Calgary's empty downtown spurs push for economic summit to discuss solutions – Calgary Herald

Amid a glut of empty skyscrapers in Calgary’s core, two inner-city councillors want to “look at every possible option to strengthen downtown.”....more...

January 12, 2017

2017 Economic Outlook and Regional Housing Market Forecast – Creb

Click the link to review the full report from Creb’s annual economic forecast. Including factors influencing the 2017 housing market, market outlook risk, new home and rental market and much more.....more...

Calgary house prices to 'remain unchanged' in 2017 while condos fall 2%, CREB forecasts – CBC News

“The annual report, released Wednesday, forecasts total sales activity "well below normal levels for the city" and price impacts that vary depending on housing type.”....more...

Five historic sites the city of Calgary wants to protect – Calgary Herald

“From inner-city parks and schools to century-old homes, the city’s planning committee will consider the designation of five iconic properties as municipal historic resources.”....more...

January 11, 2017

5 reasons Canada's economy is looking up in 2017 – CBC News

The job market is recovering; Oil could be headed higher — finally; the Loonie could be headed higher, too; Trade is picking up; and, The TSX is near an all-time high.....more...

On the road – CREB Now

“Calgary’s satellite communities and their respective housing markets saw economic conditions play out in different ways this past year.”....more...

Chrystia Freeland becomes foreign minister as Trudeau shuffles cabinet – CBC News

CHBA Commentary: CHBA congratulates the Hon. François-Philippe Champagne on his appointment to Cabinet – Minister Champagne has played an important role in addressing the drywall duty issue and has a good understanding of business issues, including those of the residential construction industry. His new position will continue to involve him in topics relating to international trade in building materials.....more...

January 10, 2017

Housing starts end 2016 on positive note – The OWL

“For the year as a whole, a total of 24,606 homes were built in 2016 (based on the average of the 12 months), down from 37,500 the year before. But for some context, last year’s pace of building came very close to matching that in 2011—and it was 20 per cent higher than 2009, the last recession year to hit Alberta.”....more...

LOSERS: MILLENNIALS BUYING HOUSES - Ottawa scorecard 2016 - The winners and losers under the Trudeau government – National Post

“The real losers of the Trudeau years could well be the very people who helped get him elected — millennials keen to get on the first rung of the housing ladder.” CHBA Commentary: “CHBA President Bob Finnigan has been invited and will speak to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance regarding issues surrounding housing markets, their relationship with the financial system and challenges surrounding access to home ownership. CHBA has continuously stressed that there is a significant danger to the economy if first-time homebuyers lose the opportunity to enter the market.”....more...

Scientists mapping deadly radon in Calgary – Calgary Herald

“Radon is a naturally occurring gas produced from the radioactive decay of uranium in rocks and soil. It is colourless, odourless and tasteless. It is extremely prevalent in the Canadian prairies having been deposited by glaciers. It seeps into homes through cracks in walls, floors and foundations and through floor drains and sumps. Houses in cold climates are at particular risk since windows and doors are kept closed for over half the year and there’s often little air circulation, which creates a vacuum effect.”....more...

January 9, 2017

[Video] CHBA’s Kevin Lee speaks on drywall issue - CBC On the Money

CHBA Commentary: Since the Canadian International Trade Tribunal’s decision and report has come out, there has been a lot of confusion and misinformation regarding the implications of the Tribunal’s recommendations and a lot of gratuitous speculation on “winners” and “losers”. CHBA’s media release and a members-only update (you must be signed in to see the update) outline the accomplishments to date, what information we’re still waiting for and what we will be doing moving forward.....more...

2016 Year in review – Calgary Sun

CHBA – UDI Calgary Region CEO, Guy Huntingford, reviews all of the major events and priorities that affected the association and its members in 2016.....more...

Mike Holmes: The secret to keeping your home warm starts in your attic – National Post

“Let’s address this problem from the very top: your attic. If your attic is not properly ventilated and insulated it can be the culprit of a home that will cost you, either through your furnace running over time, or through damage because the structure can’t adapt to the winter season.”....more...

January 6, 2017

Flipping Houses: The Most In Demand Home Feature – Winchester Builders

“For a variety of reasons, including changing neighborhoods and rising crime rates, there remains a soaring demand for homes that feature increased security measures.”.....more...

Calgary's luxury home values feel an economic squeeze – Calgary Herald

“There is a trend driven by a persistent energy sector recession that saw a 17 per cent drop over the past year in the number of properties assessed at over $1 million.”....more...

[Video] Federal trade tribunal says barriers must remain on dumped U.S. drywall imports - MSN

The CITT found preliminary duties have been “substantially reducing competition” in Western Canada to the detriment of Canada’s economic interests and consumers of drywall. It recommends that the government consider refunding some of the duties paid so far to alleviate short-term pain for contractors and consumers, and that it consider a special remission of duties to residents of Fort McMurray. A Finance Department spokesman said last week the Minister will review the tribunal’s decision reasons and recommendations, expected to be published January 19, before determining its next steps. Commentary: The Association, supported by the hard work and actions of members, certainly had a big impact on the process and helped to achieve the good results so far. We will continue building on this momentum in the weeks ahead.....more...

Under 35? You face at least 3 tough challenges in the 2017 economy – CBC News

Coverage continues to remain strong for concerns expressed by many Millennials about access to home ownership, an ongoing theme of CHBA advocacy efforts.....more...

January 5, 2017

Certain Concrete Reinforcing Bar [Rebar] - Notice of Preliminary Determination - Canada Border Services Agency

Provisional duties will now be payable on the subject goods that are released from customs on or after January 3, 2017. Commentary: This follows the 2014 tariffs on rebar from China, Korea and Turkey. CHBA is reviewing the issue in conjunction with the Canadian Construction Association......more...

Can America’s Aging Stay in Their Homes? – City Lab

Are we ready for the Baby Boomers who want to age in place? A new report shows interesting statistics on housing and aging.....more...

The Avenue Best Neighbourhood Survey for 2017 Is Now Open – Avenue Magazine

“For the eighth consecutive year, Avenue magazine is asking Calgary residents to express their opinions in the Best Neighbourhoods Survey. The survey takes less than 10 minutes to complete and closes on February 28, 2017.....more...

Will Canada's Real Estate Market Get Trumped? – Huff Post Canada

“A stronger U.S. dollar could send even more buyers north of the border.”....more...

How accurate was our 2016 real estate market outlook? – Money Sense

“Just how accurate was our real estate market overview for 2016? Here’s what we expected and here’s what happened.”....more...

January 4, 2017

Ruling this week on drywall tariffs linked to new jobs — but higher home costs – CBC News

"The Canadian International Trade Tribunal is scheduled to rule today on whether imports of drywall or gypsum board from the United States have injured the western Canadian industry. The CITT is also expected today to issue a separate report into whether the duties are harming consumers, with findings and recommendations on remedies to follow. Commentary: CHBA has asked the Tribunal [and the government] to compare the purpose and result of duties for domestic drywall producers with the impact on an industry that meant $45 billion in economic activity, 400,000 jobs and $24 billion in wages for Western Canada in 2015. More commentary, and possible CHBA actions (if necessary), will follow tomorrow’s announcement.".....more...

Tiny house, anyone? – Spacing Vancouver

“Rather than see tiny through our own eyes, we asked cities, community and industry leaders and supporters to define the barriers to this housing stock, and outline the opportunities we could collectively explore.”....more...

Calgary housing sales ending year 15 per cent below 10-year average – Calgary Herald

“Calgary’s real estate market continued to slide in 2016, ending the year with total sales down 15 per cent from the 10-year average in December.”....more...

Fort McMurray rebuild after wildfire could be impacted by trade ruling today – Calgary Herald

“A decision expected later today could drive up the cost of rebuilding Fort McMurray after a wildfire swept through the northern Alberta city last spring. Prices for drywall, a building material considered vital to replace 1,800 houses and dozens of other structures destroyed by the fire, have risen dramatically since Canada slapped anti-dumping duties in September on U.S.-made products imported to Western Canada.”....more...

January 3, 2017

Look back: 2016 introduced innovative concepts in multi-family – Calgary Herald

“For Calgary’s multi-family housing market, 2016 was a year of first steps for some ground-breaking ideas. One of the biggest belonged to Jayman Built, bringing its own sophisticated community to the larger master-planned community of Mahogany by Hopewell Residential.”.....more...

2016: Calgary's north a strong draw for new communities – Calgary Herald

“For the unveiling of new master-planned communities, north Calgary captured the spotlight in 2016.”....more...

Klassen: 'Our industry is resilient and so is our city' – Calgary Herald

Allan Klassen, Chair of CHBA – UDI Calgary Region, on the building industry in 2016 and how 2017 is shaping up. ....more...

December 22, 2016

Stats on Calgary’s Community Engagement – Genesis Blog

“There are 150 community associations in Calgary, and there are a lot of ways you can engage with your community whether as a volunteer or simply connecting with your neighbours.”.....more...

Buy us electric buses, or give Calgary Transit a carbon tax break: Nenshi – Metro News Calgary

“Mayor says it makes no sense to speed up city’s bus conversion process to make up for the brunt of the NDP carbon tax.”....more...

Justin Trudeau discusses Donald Trump, pipelines, climate change at Calgary event – Global News

“Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was in Calgary Wednesday, speaking to a sold out chamber of commerce crowd full of business and energy leaders. As David Boushy reports, Trudeau shared some positive news for the oil patch, regarding the Keystone XL pipeline.”....more...

December 21, 2016

Q and A with CHBA-UDI’s Marissa Toohey – CREB Now

“Marissa Toohey has one of the better views of Calgary’s housing industry – and we’re not talking about the one out of her living room. As manager of government relations and committees for the Calgary Region at CHBA – UDI Calgary Region Association. Toohey works closely with municipalities in the broader region on matters impacting the building and development industry.”.....more...

Imported Drywall Tariffs Spark Controversy – Home Builder Magazine

Significant media coverage of the duty on U.S. drywall coming into Western Canada is continuing. CHBA’s concerns are included in this. It is clear to journalists that drywall contractors, home builders, renovators, consumers and the economy are being hurt by soaring prices and uncertain supply.....more...

Government of Canada to ban asbestos – Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

As the government notes in its release: “There are no significant health risks if materials containing asbestos in homes are tightly bound and left undisturbed.”....more...

Terms of Reference adopted for Omni ASP – Rocky View Weekly

“Council approved a Terms of Reference to guide the development of the Omni ASP, located east of Stoney Trail along 84th Street and Highway 564.”....more...

RVC vetos selling Cochrane Ag Society lands – Rocky View Weekly

“In a motion made as the result of an in-camera discussion Dec. 13, Rocky View County (RVC) council voted unanimously to terminate a process that would have seen the sale of county land currently leased to the Cochrane and District Agricultural Society (CDAS).”....more...

Couple excited to pioneer new community of Carrington – Calgary Herald

“They’re among the first to buy a home in Carrington by Genstar Development Co. It stood out with its proximity to a planned major activity centre, LRT stop and blueprint that includes an interconnected pathway system and eye-catching landscaped pond.”....more...

Seton Park Place brings convenience to the doorstep – Calgary Herald

“Along with three bedroom options are floor plans with one bedroom and one bathroom, two bedrooms and one bathroom, and two bedrooms with two bathrooms. There are 19 plans in total, ranging from 571 square feet to 1,241 square feet. Patios and balconies start at 69 square feet and reach 242 square feet. The first release was in the building’s east wing, and comprising 74 units. Since opening in October, 59 have been sold.”....more...

December 20, 2016

Breakenridge: A possible Olympic bid shouldn't skew our infrastructure priorities - Calgary Herald

“if project makes sense, fund it; if not, don’t.”.....more...

Breaking the boom and bust: A few ways Alberta is diversifying its economy – Metro News Calgary

The government has launched various grants and incentives in an effort to lure investment from a wide range of industries. This article looks at how the government’s efforts are playing out in a few key sectors.....more...

ENMAX commits three more years to Calgary's Energizing Spaces Fund – Energy Manager

“Thanks to an extended, three-year funding commitment from ENMAX, the Energizing Spaces Fund can continue to help Calgary’s community centres and outdoor spaces upgrade to more energy-efficient solutions, announced the Federation of Calgary Communities.”....more...

December 19, 2016

Bankruptcies tiptoe higher – The OWL

“Unfortunately, it’s almost certain that bankruptcies will tick higher here in our province especially since November’s unemployment rate reached a 22-year high. The good news is that it’s unlikely that bankruptcy rates won’t reach the highs seen in 2009.”.....more...

Housing Preferences of Millennial Home Buyers – CHBA

“In this article, we take a closer look at the millennial homebuyers in the survey—who they are, what they want in a new home, and how they compare to the average homebuyers in the survey.”....more...

Activate Your Silent Salesperson: Digital Retargeting – CHBA

“Digitally, it used to be good enough to make sure you’d sorta-kinda made your website search engine friendly and populated your company’s social media account(s) page with updates. But, if asked, your marketing team will likely admit that your website reach has stalled or that Facebook’s “people-reached” update performance indicator is declining. Now what?”....more...

Notley says new city charters not a priority - Calgary Sun

“Premier Rachel Notley downplayed the likelihood of new tax powers for Calgary and Edmonton Friday, though she isn’t ruling them out.”....more...

Council to make final decision on cycle track – CTV News

“The controversial cycle track has been in testing for the past 18 months and while critics say it slows traffic and cuts off access to valuable parking, those in favour say it make it safer for cyclists to get around in the downtown core.”....more...

Alberta carbon tax calculator: How much will you pay — or get back? – CBC News

This tool will help you estimate how Alberta's new carbon tax will impact you.....more...

December 16, 2016

Initial impact of mortgage rules revealed – Rep Mag

Interest for variable rate mortgages fell while interest in saving 20% for a down payment to avoid mortgage insurance regulations grew. Both of those trends are being attributed to recent mortgage rule changes, which have influenced an uptick in mortgage rates and made it harder to qualify for insured mortgages.....more...

Life underground - CPAC Canada

Residential construction accounted for 28% of the total underground economy in 2012, according to Statistics Canada. Canada Revenue Agency is stepping up its means of catching more tax dodgers by refining its understanding of the UE and increasing the number of UE specialist teams. The Minister has also put in place advisory committees that bring together representatives from concerned sectors: construction, restaurants, SMEs, retail, etc. CHBA Commentary: CHBA was a founding member of the Minister’s Underground Economy Advisory Committee, and has contributed actively to the development of CRA’s Underground Economy Strategy. In the past the Minister has highlighted CHBA’s participation and the government’s desire to develop more collaborative initiatives like Get it in Writing!....more...

CHBA president keeping pressure on governments – Real Estate News Exchange

“The Canadian Home Builders’ Association (CHBA) claims residential construction represents more jobs and economic impact than any industry in Canada, and president Bob Finnigan is trying to ensure that clout is recognized by all levels of government.”....more...

Alberta economy poised to grow in 2017 but job recovery will lag, Todd Hirsch forecasts – CBC News

“The provincial economy will climb out of the depths of the recession in the new year, but the chief economist for ATB Financial says it's not going to feel much like a recovery for lots of Albertans.”....more...

December 14, 2016

Laneway Homes - CMHC

Latest edition of CMHC’s Housing Observer is everything you need to know about laneway housing.....more...

Canadian home price and debt charts that will raise the hair on your neck [Subscribers Only] - Globe and Mail

“Household debt has been a huge issue in Canada, tied to the run-up in home prices, which have cooled in some cities of late. This analysis from the Bank for International Settlements (a global body made up of central banks) comes during a key week for debt and housing numbers, with reports on tap from Statistics Canada, the Bank of Canada and groups that measure home prices.” CHBA Commentary: International comparisons and pressures to respond to global economic forces have prompted movement by the federal government to try and reduce household debt. CHBA consistently advocates that supply must be a vital part of a coordinated response to increasing affordability. In addition, long-term mitigation measures are required: if first-time buyers cannot enter housing markets, the result could be many Baby Boomers unable to sell their homes down the road.....more...

10 New Year's Resolutions for real estate in 2017 – YP NextHome

“Have you made your New Year’s resolutions yet? If you’re planning to buy or sell a home in 2017, here are a few key resolutions that will help with a smooth transaction.”....more...

Mayor Nenshi says Calgary should not wait for another oil boom – CTV News

“The downturn is a good opportunity to build new markets and new opportunities.”....more...

Duplexes lead sales in Calgary's multi-family resale market – Calgary Herald

“This was the only segment to see growth in sales year over year, says the Calgary Real Estate Board. Meanwhile, apartment sales were flat with November 2015 and townhome activity recorded a setback.”....more...

December 13, 2016

A housing-affordability crisis? Not so fast: Dunning - Globe and Mail

The President of CMHC is musing about increasing down payments to “improve housing affordability.” It takes about twice as long to save a down payment as it did 15 years ago. Down-payment affordability conditions are already quite challenging - raising required down payments would worsen affordability, slow the housing market and weaken the broader economy.....more...

Calgary looks at building 500-stall parking structure in East Village – Calgary Metro

“Structure would provide parking for National Music Centre, new library, entertainment district.”....more...

Accessibility at home and in the streets – Calgary Metro

“Accessible Housing just launched Accessible University--Accessible U—a website that provides information and resources to help make homes more accessible for people. “As a centralized location for data, research, toolkits and practical information, Accessible U makes relevant and understandable information readily available to you.”....more...

Natural gas prices jump up...quietly – The OWL

“Natural gas prices have climbed to levels not seen for about two and a half years.”....more...

Considering the human face of trade disputes – National Newswatch

“This Op Ed by CHBA CEO Kevin Lee lays out the important economic and social dimensions of the imported drywall issue. Its publication comes at the conclusion of the CITT’s two-week public hearings, in which CHBA was an active intervenor. The CITT will release its final determination, and recommendations to the Finance Minister, if necessary, on January 4th.”....more...

December 9, 2016

The average Canadian will now have to save for 102 weeks to buy a house – Global News

“It now takes about twice as long for the average Canadian worker to save for a down payment than it did 15 years ago, according to a new report from Mortgage Professionals Canada, making it difficult for young Canadians to save for their first home.”....more...

Healthy homes, healthier people – CREB Now

“What the research has found is that neighbourhoods that are walkable, where there are not necessarily a lot of cul-de-sacs and there’s instead a grid design for the roadways, promote better health outcomes…”....more...

Out of recession: recovery to take place in Alberta but at a moderate pace – BOE Report

“Alberta is forecast to emerge from one of the worst recessions to hit the province in decades next year, albeit economic recovery is likely to be modest, according to The Conference Board of Canada’s.”....more...

Finance Committee’s Pre-Budget Consultation Report Refers to All CHBA Proposals; Infrastructure and Professional Development Asks Included in Formal Recommendations to Government – Canadian Home Builders’ Association

“The Finance Committee has issued its Pre-Budget Report and Recommendations. It contains fourteen references to CHBA Budget proposals, an unprecedented number. Five key recommendations by the Committee to the government directly align with CHBA advocacy. These include: re-examining the definition of “housing affordability”; developing more timely infrastructure approval processes; ensuring coordination and consistency between federal and provincial/territorial infrastructure funding programs; enhancing labour market information, and linking training programs with labour market needs across the country.”....more...

Annual State of the Residential Mortgage Market in Canada Released – Mortgage Professionals Canada

“Canadians who purchased their first home within the past two years reflect a “new normal” in the Canadian housing market... Thirty-four per cent of recent first-time buyers think it is important to generate income from their properties… 13 per cent of those who undertook renovations on their homes did so to add space for a rental unit. Half of 18-34 year-olds do not own a home, primarily because they are saving for a down payment.”....more...

December 8, 2016

Calgary seeks changes to provincial rule barring redevelopment under flight paths – Calgary Herald

“The city is pursuing a plan to ask the province to amend the rules that limit residential redevelopment in lands near a certain amount of airport noise exposure, including chunks of Inglewood, Mayland Heights, Radisson Heights and Southview.”....more...

Council adopts 2017 budget with 0.63 per cent tax increase – City View

“Airdrie City council adopted a $130.3 million operating budget and $37.5 million capital budget for 2017 during its Dec. 5 meeting.”....more...

Housing starts stable, but below 10-year average – The OWL

“The resilience in Alberta’s housing prices has been one of the surprises throughout this recession. Part of the reason for this resilience has been the pull-back in the amount of new inventory coming onto the market. New data for November show this trend continuing.”....more...

Governments must focus on inclusive growth: Carney – Advisor.ca

“Increasing access to home ownership for first-time buyers among Millennials and New Canadians in today’s challenging housing markets is the single most effective initiative the federal government could take in pursuing “inclusive growth”. This is a point that CHBA will continue to hammer home in cooperation with other national associations.”....more...

BoC maintains overnight rate target at 1/2 per cent – Bank of Canada

“The Bank of Canada today announced that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 1/2 per cent. The Bank Rate is correspondingly 3/4 per cent and the deposit rate is 1/4 per cent. Global economic conditions have strengthened, however, uncertainty is undermining business confidence and dampening investment.”....more...

December 7, 2016

Real estate round-up: 2016 in review – YP NextHome

"Here are our top 10 newsmakers of 2016 – some good news, some bad, but all essential reading for the smart home buyer in 2017."....more...

Alberta government supports two new petrochemical plants – Calgary Economic Development

“The Alberta government has moved to diversify the province’s energy sector with support for two new petrochemical plants to process the propane extracted from natural gas to produce the propylene and polypropylene used to make plastics.”....more...

Parker: PBA Land Development secures approvals for two new downtown Calgary hotels – Calgary Herald

The Calgary Planning Commission gave unanimous approval to a downtown hotel under two flags on 5th Avenue S.W.....more...

What's Involved In Developing a New Calgary Neighbourhood – Avenue Magazine

“We take an in-depth look at Calgary’s development process to better understand how a new community evolves.”....more...

December 6, 2016

What Happens if Young People Never Buy Homes? – Vice.com

Equity stakes of current home buyers will be at risk in the long term if Millennials are unable to get into the market, as will the future net worth and economic prosperity of a generation of renters. Much more attention needs to be given to long-term effects on the economy and society arising from an entire generation of young Canadians being delayed or prevented from attaining homeownership. CHBA continues to raise this macro-economic issue in its advocacy to the federal government.....more...

Calgary startup makes concrete stronger by injecting it with CO2 – CBC News

“Carbon Upcycling Technologies awarded Shell Canada grant to further develop green tech.”....more...

Future of housing – CREB Now

“Canadian Home Builders’ Association-Alberta CEO Donna Moore said one of the organization’s top concerns when it comes to the development of a national housing strategy is to address affordability for first-time buyers.”....more...

Certain Gypsum Board - Notice of Final Determination - Canada Border Services Agency

“CHBA is continuing to participate in the Tribunal hearings on the public interest in Edmonton, which will feed into the final determination on if and how the final duties will be applied. In the meantime, it is unclear how these revised dumping margins will translate to prices between now and January 4. This uncertainty on how to quote for projects moving forward, along with all the negative impacts the duties have had on industry, have been made very clear at the Tribunal by CHBA and industry members.”....more...

Community Housing Affordability Collective wants strategies to become reality – Calgary Herald

Calgary’s Community Housing Affordability Collective is now taking members and has a new website at chacollective.com, where it has rolled out its action plan. “We have an action plan to create an integrated approach to housing, to create a stable and diverse housing mix, and to achieve predictable and stable funding,” says CHAC co-chair Beverly Jarvis. She’s also director of policy, projects and government relations for the [CHBA-UDI Calgary Region]. Commentary: This Calgary-based initiative is similar in some ways to the National Housing Collaborative led by the United Way, in which CHBA National is involved. Formed by the City, it brings together the industry along with representatives of a variety of other interests. The Calgary positions emphasize overall housing affordability and initiatives beyond social housing investment. You can find out more at: http://www.chacollective.com/.....more...

December 5, 2016

A glimpse into youth employment trends – The OWL

“While the youth unemployment rate is somewhat comparable with levels observed during the mid-1970s, the degree to which young Canadians or young Albertans hold full-time jobs or permanent jobs has changed dramatically over the last four decades.”....more...

New NAIMA report reveals that most homes in Canada are significantly under-insulated - NAIMA

“A new report reveals that by simply retrofitting homes with better insulation, Canadians could save hundreds per year on electricity bills and play a big role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”....more...

December 2, 2016

Province asks residents for feedback on MGA – City View Airdrie

“The Municipal Government Act (MGA) is the largest piece of legislature in Alberta and Albertan’s can have their say about the proposed changes to the MGA by reading the Province’s discussion paper and answering an online questionnaire.”....more...

Crowchild Trail study back for sixth and final public engagement – Metro News

“After nearly two years and five steps, the Crowchild Trail Study is entering its final phase. And as with the previous five steps, the city is again looking for the public’s input.”....more...

Calgary cycle track pilot gets final report card – Metro Calgary

“It’s the cycle track’s final report card, and while advocates may look at the results as “passing with flying colours,” ultimately, the decision to continue on track is in council’s hand.”....more...

Canadian city mulling introduction of driver-less shuttle services – India Blooms

“Calgary has been trying to introduce a driver-less shuttle that would operate between Zoo LRT Station and Telus Spark Science Museum, according to media reports.”....more...

November 30, 2016

Foreign Ownership in Canada’s Housing Market Remains Low: CMHC Reports - CMHC

“The share of foreign ownership in condominium apartments remains low in major Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs),” says CMHC....more...

Calgary sees banner year for transportation infrastructure – Journal of Commerce

“The City of Calgary's director of transportation infrastructure, Michael Thompson, describes 2016 as a "busier year than usual for us" in terms of projects that are either in the planning stages or are under construction.”....more...

Calgary approves $15M to help struggling businesses — it's just not sure how to do it – CBC News

“Nenshi used the opportunity to once again mention how important it is for the city and the province to conclude negotiations on a city charter for Calgary, which would give the municipal government expanded powers and freedom.”....more...

November 28, 2016

OECD maintains low-growth view of Canada’s economy this year and next – National Newswatch

The residential construction industry continues to play a vital role in Canada's economic growth, as stressed in the CHBA submission on a National Housing Strategy and in presentations to the House of Commons Finance Committee....more...

Slowdown benefits first-time buyers with extra time and savings for their big decision – Calgary Herald

A slower economy allows for first-time homebuyers to take their time and make a more informed choice....more...

November 25, 2016

Solar-Panel Roads to Be Built on Four Continents Next Year - Bloomberg

Calgary to get electric avenues that can transmit the sun’s energy onto power grids?....more...

Mayor John Tory to announce tolls proposal for 2 major Toronto highways – CBC News

“Water conservation top of mind for developers and municipalities as usage could exceed supply in coming decades.”....more...

Housing investment showing signs of a recovery – The Owl

“The latest housing investment numbers show that Alberta’s construction and housing sectors may be nearing recovery and maybe, even picking up steam. According to Statistics Canada, investment in new housing construction grew about six per cent between August and September.”....more...

November 24, 2016

[Video] CHBA Concerned about Negative Impact of Drywall Duty for US imports into Western Canada - BNN

Yesterday, CHBA’s Jason Burggraaf was quoted in a BNN report on the impact that the duty on US drywall is having on businesses in the residential construction industry, consumers, and the News rebuilding effort in Fort McMurray.....more...

Mayor John Tory to announce tolls proposal for 2 major Toronto highways – CBC News

CHBA has advocated for user fees to play a larger role in financing infrastructure for years. In the absence of user fees, dollars to cover infrastructure that benefits existing communities are sought instead excessively through development taxes on buyers of new homes, further deteriorating affordability. It is encouraging to see the user-fee theme is being picked up at both municipal and federal levels (in relation to the new “Infrastructure Bank”).....more...

November 23, 2016

Calgary’s Community Housing Affordability Collective the first of its kind

“Today Calgary’s Community Housing Affordability Collective (CHAC) revealed a website where Calgarians can sign up to help make housing more affordable in the city.”....more...

CMHC report highlights need for more affordable housing – Ottawa Citizen

“In the coming weeks the government will announce a five-year, $2.5-billion loan program aimed at spurring construction of as many as 10,000 rental units across the country. The program was included in the 2016 budget and will be overseen by CMHC.”....more...

Whether TPP or NAFTA, Canada needs to walk a careful line – The Globe and Mail

“As some of the Trump administration’s initial plans on international trade agreements become clearer, Canadian trade experts have upgraded their expectations from mixed to cautiously optimistic.”....more...

Small municipalities unlikely to benefit from infrastructure bank, Morneau hints – News1130

“One of the federal government’s stated goals is diversifying investment and promoting economic growth outside of Canada’s largest urban centres. One idea cited in the article is “bundling” smaller projects from a number of communities in order to make them more appealing for international investors. Exploring this option would be an appropriate and constructive role for the new infrastructure bank.”....more...

November 22, 2016

Report on Canada’s national housing strategy released – TheStar.com

“Canadians are calling for a collaborative, strong and innovative national housing strategy to eliminate homelessness across the country.”....more...

November 21, 2016

How to House Us All: A Tyee Reader – The Tyee

“Since Labour Day, the federal government has been soliciting Canadians’ views on those subjects through an outreach program called Let’s Talk Housing. Groups and individuals were asked to submit thoughts, and roundtables convened on focused topics like Indigenous housing and housing for new Canadians. On Nov. 22, National Housing Day, the Ministry of Families, Children and Social Development reveals what it heard.”....more...

Market Update Reports – CHBA - Alberta

November Market Update reports for Alberta residential construction are now online.....more...

Kids, kids everywhere! – The OWL

15.2 per cent of the Alberta’s total population is in grade school. More children are an economic benefit. A growing population is essential for a growing economy, and the children in our schools today will be the bright minds filling our economy’s jobs in the future.....more...

Update on Drywall – Canadian Home Builders’ Association

This week’s council meeting to look at the city budget for mid-cycle adjustments.....more...

November 18, 2016

Higher down payments could be on horizon as danger of Canadians’ debt grows, CMHC warns – Financial Post

“The head of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. has opened the door to the possibility of increasing the minimum down payment needed to buy a house, though a change is not currently on the table.”....more...

Calgary economy poised to grow in 2017 after two years of declines, Conference Board predicts – Calgary Herald

“Calgary’s economy will see a modest recovery next year after two consecutive years of declines, the Conference Board of Canada predicts.”....more...

Rocky View Forward aims to strengthen voice of residents – Strathmore Standard

“Rocky View Forward (RVF), that will aim to bring greater transparency to the county and provide a voice for residents at a time when more residents are feeling marginalized.”....more...

Update on Drywall – Canadian Home Builders’ Association

“CHBA submitted CHBA submitted its formal brief and corroborating evidence to the Canadian International Trade Tribunal today, has posted an update on its actions regarding duties on imported drywall on its Industry Issues: Drywall Duty in Western Canada webpage.”....more...

November 17, 2016

NIMBYs, the development industry hears your concerns – YP NextHome

Guy Huntingford, CEO of CHBA – UDI Calgary Region Association, says the biggest problem with NIMBYisn is the misconceptions on which it is based – namely the belief that change and densification are negative. “In nearly all cases, it is actually a way to revitalize and drive increased property values for existing communities. “A lot of issues are fear-based and founded in hearsay and disinformation. Therefore, a constant and positive education and dialogue on the issues that creates NIMBY tendencies is key to success for the city and region.”....more...

November 16, 2016

$5.3B to be spent rebuilding Fort McMurray, boosting GDP, Conference Board says – CBC News

As part of its work to address the duty on drywall, CHBA has noted how price increases and potential supply disruptions could affect rebuilding in Fort McMurray, and is providing testimony from contractors on how the duty has impaired them vis-à-vis insurance work.....more...

What should our National Housing Strategy look like? – NextHome.yp.ca

CHBA continues to encourage that the National Housing Strategy address the full housing ‘continuum’, including affordability of homeownership and of rental homes - most recently at a meeting with Department of Finance officials this week, where CHBA focused its recommendations on finding solutions to help first-time homebuyers.....more...

Expect more fixed rate mortgage loan increases - MoneySense

“The recent announcement by RBC to increase fixed mortgage loan rates is just the start of things to come.”....more...

With many people unable to afford a new home after changed mortgage rules, renovation becoming the trend – Financial Post

“Bob Finnigan, President of Canadian Home Builders’ Association, noted that the renovation market is bigger than the new home market and renovation tax credits could be coming our way.” CHBA Commentary: Renovation and repair spending have been increasing for well over a decade, and have eclipsed spending on new construction, standing at $70 billion in 2015. As Bob notes, renovation has become more attractive as an option for those who can’t afford to move due to rising prices in the hottest housing markets......more...

November 15, 2016

Calgary's economy should grow by 2% in 2017, Conference Board forecasts – CBC News

“In recent weeks, numerous banks have predicted that Alberta's economy, as a whole, will emerge from recession in 2017, including BMO, TD, and ATB.”....more...

Royal Bank raises its discounted mortgage rates across the board – Financial Post

“Royal Bank of Canada said it is raising its rates for amortizations 25 years or under, effective Nov. 17.”.....more...

Calgary retail report says many areas lacking corner stores, free parking – Metro News

“The city is well served by retail – but has an abundance of restaurant and eatery businesses, while establishments like corner stores are lacking.”.....more...

VR Is Changing How Architects Design Buildings - Builder

Virtual Reality technology has revolutionized the building and design industry by providing the ability to experience spaces before they're built.....more...

November 14, 2016

Choose to Save: Partial Mortgage Loan Insurance Rebate – Built Green

“All homes certified through Built Green Canada are automatically eligible for a partial mortgage loan insurance premium refund through both Genworth Canada and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). Both CMHC’s and Genworth’s partial mortgage loan insurance refund is a savings of 15% for those with a BUILT GREEN® certified home.”....more...

In a Donald Trump World, Canada's Carbon Tax Regimen Makes Little Sense – National Post

“CHBA’s proposals for focusing efforts in the housing sector on energy retrofits offer a win-win for homeowners and the environment, irrespective of decisions made south of the border. In new housing, which performs very well already, higher levels of energy performance need to stay voluntary until they are proven to be cost-effective—now more than ever, Canadians can’t afford code changes that excessively drive up costs.”.....more...

November 10, 2016

New home prices still unchanged – The OWL

“The current recession in Alberta has done very little to knock down prices for new homes, at least according to the new housing price index.”....more...

Alberta couple’s retirement cottage an experiment in sustainable design – The Globe and Mail

“The 850-square-feet house is a post and beam construction with solar panels, straw bale insulation, rammed earth walls, a metal roof and a wood burning stove.”.....more...

The New Green Line LRT System and What That Means for You – CR Advisors

“The Green Line when constructed will provide access to employment centres, recreation centres, the National Music Centre, Central Library, Stampede Park, South Health Campus, and will pass through the Belt Line. Once the rail has been constructed the Green Line will have a future connection with the Calgary International Airport through expansion.”....more...

Premier Rachel Notley vows to protect Alberta interests if Trump reopens NAFTA – CBC News

“Alberta Premier Rachel Notley vowed Wednesday to protect Alberta's economic interests should U.S. president-elect Donald Trump take steps to scuttle or redraw the North American Free Trade Agreement.”....more...

New rules of spending – Moneysense

“Deciding whether or not a house is a good investment comes down to good, old-fashioned budget analysis.”....more...

November 9, 2016

How Trump’s win will affect Canada – The Star

“After some early volatility, global markets have settled, and first considerations of what a Donald Trump administration means for Canada are decidedly mixed. They will likely remain so until his first priorities, policies and related measures are more fully articulated. Inauguration Day will be Friday, January 20, 2017.”....more...

How plant-covered buildings improve urban life - Curbed

“A new report shows that greenery-lined structures combat both pollution and stress”.....more...

Worst of Alberta downturn 'over,' but growth will be slow in 2017, predict economists – Calgary Herald

“The worst of the oil price downturn is over, but economic growth in 2017 and beyond will be slower than what Albertans have been used to, two well-known Canadian economists said Tuesday.”....more...

The International Housing Association Supports Social Housing Needs Globally – Real Estate Rama

“Social housing is an issue impacting countries all over the world,” said Kevin Lee, chairman of IHA and CEO of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association. “IHA is bringing together industry experts and housing resources to share information about emerging techniques designed to address social housing needs.”....more...

November 8, 2016

Germany unveils zero-emissions train that only emits steam – Independent

The world's first 'hydrail' can travel almost 500 miles per day at speeds of up to 87mph.....more...

Calgary car2go tops in North America for growth – Metro Calgary

More Calgarians turn to car sharing services, helping people live car free.....more...

What You Need to Know About Commuting From a New Neighbourhood – Nuvista Blog

Here's what you can expect commuting from some of the best new communities in the Calgary area.....more...

November 4, 2016

Calgary working to bring older secondary suites into registry - Metro News

Got an older home with a questionable secondary suite? You may be able to bring it up to code easier than you think.....more...

November 3, 2016

Net Zero Energy homes for everyone by 2030? – Canadian Contractor

“What has not been so well publicized is that the Liberals have a dream that, by 2030, all new homes in Canada will be built to Net Zero Energy (NZE) standards.”....more...

November 2, 2016

Building A National Housing Strategy Is Easier Said Than Done – Huffington Post

“From affordable housing to rental markets to home ownership, the issues are complex and far-reaching.”....more...

Wind energy poised to provide boost to western Canadian economies - canwae

“Canada’s wind energy sector is ready to invest in projects worth billions of dollars in Alberta and Saskatchewan as governments in both provinces implement policies to significantly increase the amount of emissions-free electricity on their power grids”....more...

Planning and Development Dispatch – City of Calgary

The City of Calgary Planning and Development Dispatch November issue is now available.....more...

City shows well in red tape report – Airdrie Echo

“Airdrie ranked fourth on a list of least-regulated municipalities situated along the Calgary-Edmonton corridor, indicating developers have less red tape to wade through in the city than those in other communities.”....more...

Calgary looks to cut more red tape on secondary suites – Metro News

“Administration is telling councillors that homeowners should not need to get a development permit on top of their building permit in areas where suites are permitted, and where the suite complies with land use bylaws.”....more...

Tree Shaped Wind Turbines to be Installed in Paris – Alternative Energy News

Tree shaped wind turbines hoped to be used to exploit small air currents flowing along buildings and streets, and could eventually be installed in people’s yards and urban centres.....more...

November 1, 2016

Cancer researchers want you to test your home for radon – now

Dr. Goodarzi is a word class researcher and has been working with the Canadian Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (CARST) as well as the Canadian Radon Proficiency Program (C-NRPP)and the Alberta Radon network for the past three years to sample and report on the incidence of Radon levels in Calgary and area homes. The results of last year’s data implies that new homes may be more susceptible to Radon infiltration with direct impacts to CHBA members and their clients. November is radon action month and Health Canada, the Lung Association and our member groups will be launching various Public Service announcements and articles throughout the month.....more...

Calgary home sales rise for second consecutive month – Calgary Herald

“Calgary’s real estate market appeared to find some balance in October, as overall sales rose, while inventory and the number of new listings fell in the city, according to preliminary numbers from the Calgary Real Estate Board.”....more...

Tough times call for tough management, says Calgary legal expert – Journal of Commerce

"There's plenty of good talent available now," Best said. "Take some time and hire your dream team. There are tremendous opportunities to be seized now."....more...

Alberta's exports to the European Union – The OWL

“Alberta’s merchandise exports to the EU totalled almost $1.4 billion in 2015. Although nothing to snuff at, that $1.4 billion represents only one per cent of our total international exports. With more open trade, however, Alberta’s exports to the EU have a good chance to grow.”....more...

GingerCane 2016 - Team Registration is Open! – Evans 2 Design Group

“Every December, Evans 2 Design Group presents the annual 'GingerCane' Gingerbread House design contest, bringing the home building industry together in support of kid's hospitals in local communities.”....more...

The Well-Designed City Is A Healthy City, All Over The World - Builder

“A well-designed neighborhoods where walking is an effective mode of transportation not only keep their residents fit, but can reduce obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.”....more...

Changes proposed to Cochrane's accessory suite by-law – 660 News

“Existing suites won’t have to make changes and they’ll be grandfathered into any changes made. Tomes says they’re holding an open-house Thursday morning for builders, developers and realtors so they can learn more about the changes.”....more...

October 31, 2016

Eight families come home to new builds by Habitat for Humanity – Calgary Herald

“Eight Calgary families received the keys to their new homes last week in the northeast community of Pineridge, thanks to an affordable housing initiative spearheaded by Habitat for Humanity Southern Alberta.”....more...

CHBA Presents the Net Zero Home program Branding – CHBA

Net Zero Home has new branding, including the new Program name, logo, and tagline as well as key messaging such as the “elevator pitch” and some language/copy on the main benefits of these homes.....more...

Getting to Net-Zero Carbon in Multifamily Homes – Rocky Mountain Institute

“Consumers wanting to undertake a deep energy retrofit of a home currently face a challenging process that involves multiple complex steps, as shown in the infographic.”....more...

Morneau defends mortgage rule changes as key to financial stability – CBC News

It is clear that the Minister of Finance needs to consider both international financial impacts of higher household debt levels, and longer-term negative impacts of declining housing affordability for first-time buyers. CHBA will continue to stress the latter in advocating measures to mitigate consequences of federal lending restrictions for first-time buyers. The long-term stability of housing markets depends on having new buyers enter the market.....more...

October 28, 2016

CHBA unveils Net Zero Home brand – Canadian Home Builders’ Association

CHBA is leading the way on voluntary levels of energy performance, while advocating against mandatory energy regulation that decreases affordability. Net Zero is a great choice for homebuyers, but until costs come down it needs to be just that: a choice.....more...

Liberals to introduce incentives to retrofit homes, rules for more net zero new homes - CBC

“The federal government wants existing homes to be more energy efficient and for developers to build more net zero homes.”....more...

Finance Minister to include new infrastructure policy in fiscal update – The Globe and Mail

“Finance Minister Bill Morneau will deliver a fiscal update on Tuesday that is along the lines of a mini-budget, with measures aimed at rolling out the federal government’s second phase of infrastructure spending.”....more...

An effort to lead more women into construction – Canadian Contractor

“Women still represent only 4 to 5 per cent of Canada's skilled trades workforce. BuildForce Canada and Women Building Futures are teaming up to try to increase that number.”....more...

The world will remain thirsty for oil – The OWL

“According to the US Energy Information Administration, global oil consumption is projected to rise to over 120 million barrels per day by 2040 compared to the current level of about 95 million barrels per day.”....more...

October 27, 2016

Earnings bucking the trend – The OWL

“Even though average earnings in Alberta are trending lower, workers here still remain the best paid among Canada’s provinces.”....more...

October 26, 2016

New energy efficiency rules coming to Alberta building code – Metro News

“As of Nov. 1, new guidelines on energy efficiency will require buildings of all shapes and sizes to meet new standards on items such as heating, insulation, lighting and more.”....more...

Calgary real estate market buoyed by Toronto and Vancouver developers: analyst – CBC News

“Calgary is still seeing major development applications and developers buying up land. But much of that is coming from Toronto and Vancouver.”....more...

New energy efficiency requirements added to Alberta's building code – Calgary Sun

“The changes would boost construction costs for a typical home by about $5,000 compared to one built under the current code, but most contractors already meet higher standards, said Donna Moore.”....more...

Alberta ushers in new era of energy efficiency – Calgary City News Blog

“I think the most important part of having energy efficiency standards is that they become universal.”....more...

October 25, 2016

North America's first urban earthship lands in Calgary – Calgary Herald

“A radically sustainable structure made of recycled tires and cans is set to help Canada’s largest urban agriculture farm produce even more food for Calgarians in need.”....more...

Making solar energy accessible in multi-family housing - SAIT

“A research partnership between Brookfield Residential and the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) is testing the viability of making solar systems available for hot water heating in multi-family housing.”....more...

Calgary inks deal with developer for Westbrook Station lands – Metro Calgary

“A proposed development in Westbrook will have some of the best transit access in the city once it’s done.”....more...

Recycling rules coming to Calgary businesses November 1 – Global News

“On November 1, some 80,000 Calgary businesses and organizations will be required to recycle the same items Calgarians already do at home.”....more...

October 24, 2016

Wholesale trade numbers offer more good news – The Owl

“August’s wholesale numbers confirm that Alberta does have a resilient retail sector. The latest numbers may also suggest that retailers are beginning to grow more optimistic and that general economic conditions in the province are starting to improve.”....more...

Calgary house prices holding strong: Royal LePage – Calgary Sun

“Despite a pronounced decline in sales, Calgary homes prices are showing unexpected resiliency, says the Royal Lepage Home Price survey.”....more...

Low-ratio mortgages get short-term reprieve – Calgary Sun

“The revision means insured borrowers with more than a 20% down-payment have until Nov. 30 to qualify for a mortgage at less than the posted rate, which would be in the area of 2.5%”....more...

Calgary versus Edmonton: residential real estate – Calgary Herald

“Driven by similar economic factors, the respective housing markets in Alberta’s two largest cities have performed differently nine months into 2016.”....more...

October 21, 2016

Laneway homes remain a rarity in Calgary but this family finds value in theirs – CBC News

Laneway home strengthens the family unit.....more...

Okotoks residents being encouraged to sign up for energy rebate program – 660 News

“There’s help available to those Okotoks residents dealing with high energy bills, a rebate program to have an energy audit done on your home. Town officials are urging people to learn more about the ‘My Heat Energy Efficiency Platform’ that was launched at the end of January.”....more...

Campaign aims to show Calgary a little love - Calgary Herald

“A new ad campaign launching Tuesday is aimed at encouraging Calgarians to support local businesses as the city continues to face economic uncertainty.”....more...

Albertans give NDP carbon tax thumbs down in new poll – Calgary Herald

“A new poll shows two-thirds of Albertans oppose the NDP government’s new broad-based carbon tax but narrowly support its plan to quickly phase out coal-fired power.”....more...

Chestermere's Mayor says report calling for clarity around utility fees will be put in action – 660 News

“Chestermere Mayor Patricia Matthews says a recent report calling for more clarity around utility bills from the city will be put into action.”....more...

Denver and the allure it has for millennials – CBC News

“What Calgary can do to attract a strong young workforce.”....more...

Council to release information on The Square – Airdrie Echo

“Airdrie councillors voted unanimously to release information regarding the Airdrie Main Street Square (AMSQ) board.”....more...

Ottawa to conduct immediate public review of new Western Canada drywall tariffs – The Canadian Contractor

“A review of the new tariffs was originally scheduled for December. But owing to the public outcry about the steep drywall price increases, Canada-wide, Ottawa is reviewing the file immediately.”....more...

October 20, 2016

Scary housing headlines to read (or not) this Halloween - YP Next Home

"While it’s prudent to pay attention to the headlines, reports and all the accompanying advice, take it with a grain of salt. While the picture may look a certain way from a national, provincial or even a city-wide perspective, what happens from one street to the next can differ dramatically. Once you figure out what your reality is, you’ll be better equipped to make that important home-buying decision without being scared off by the latest headlines."....more...

Ottawa orders review of drywall tariffs in Western Canada – CBC News

“The Liberal government has taken the unusual step of asking the Canadian International Trade Tribunal for a public interest review of recently imposed duties on drywall imported from the U.S. to Western Canada.”....more...

Misleading article on CHBA Net Zero position in The Globe and Mail - CHBA

“CHBA wants to focus on affordability and market-based innovation, and not to introduce code changes until after they are shown not to impact affordability.”....more...

Canada can outperform the world with the right plan: Minister Bains - Ottawa – Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

"The government is prepared to think big, aim high and act boldly to drive economic growth through innovation."....more...

Monetary Policy Report - October 2016 – Bank of Canada

“The Bank supports the federal government’s move to restrict mortgage insurance further. It also acknowledges the impact that the new restrictions will have on short-term growth and the risks that weaker household spending will pose. The question is whether exports or business investment will pick up the slack in the economy.”....more...

Alberta proposing stricter rules to help buyers bound by condo construction delays – CBC News

New Alberta rules could make an expected occupancy date mandatory for purchase agreements.....more...

Plentiful downtown Calgary office space seen as a bargain, by some – CBC News

'This is a great time to position yourself for future growth,' Calgary Economic Development says....more...

Resource fair helping those new to Airdrie – Airdrie City View

“New residents looking to get better acquainted with the community have a chance to do just that during the first New to Airdrie Resource Fair Oct. 23.”....more...

October 19, 2016

Home prices slip slightly in Calgary: survey – Calgary Herald

“In addition, first-time homebuyers are keeping our market active. Low interest rates and increasing confidence in the energy sector are creating more options that extend beyond condos,”....more...

New poll shows Alberta PCs leading Wildrose by almost 13 points, NDP in third – Calgary Herald

“A surprising new poll shows the Progressive Conservatives with a significant lead among Alberta voters, while the governing NDP has plunged to third place.”....more...

City’s growth rate respectable – Airdrie Echo

“Although 2015 saw the lowest growth rate posted in Airdrie in five years, the city held its own when compared to the population increase in other similar municipalities in the province.”....more...

Calgary flood mitigation workshops hope to engage residents, gather input – CBC News

“About a third of the flood risk that existed in 2013 has been eliminated by current and ongoing work by the city and the province, he explained.” "However there remains a significant risk, particularly along the Bow River." ....more...

October 18, 2016

New building codes focus on energy efficiency – iNews880 AM

“The new codes will keep up with national standards. Maisonneuve says the changes will help you feel more comfortable, and go easy on the environment.”....more...

CMHC ‘red alert’ not as bad for Calgary as for other Canadian cities – Global News

“The CMHC says Canada’s 2 hottest housing markets could suffer, but here in Calgary, maybe not so much.” Watch the video.....more...

Pipeline seen as solution to Okotoks water problems, says mayor – CBC News

“Okotoks Mayor Bill Robertson says new development will require an additional source of drinking water and he's hoping the federal and provincial governments will step up.”....more...

October 17, 2016

Technical Backgrounder: Housing Insurance Rules and Income Tax Proposals (Revised October 14, 2016) - Government of Canada

"Since the mortgage rule changes were announced on October 3, CHBA has been actively pushing the Department of Finance to address flaws that were creating uncertainty for builders, and buyers with signed deals for homes to be delivered many months or years in the future. Late on Friday, October 14, we were informed that a number of our recommended changes were being made."....more...

Charting a new course - CREB Now

“Homebuilding officials warn proposed governmental power shift could impact homebuyers in a big way.”....more...

New housing units could revolutionize healthcare for Calgary seniors – Metro News

“The University of Calgary has developed a 460 square foot housing unit equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment that can be temporarily moved into the backyard of a larger single residential lot. That means seniors can remain in close proximity with family members, while receiving advanced medical care.”....more...

Mortgage shift likely to pinch first-time buyers – Calgary Herald

“I certainly understand the decision, in terms of trying to manage the risk profile for Canadians,” Klassen says. “We don’t want to see a situation similar to what’s happened in the past in other countries. Canada has always done a good job of managing our risk profile... But it’s certainly going to create some challenges with affordability.”....more...

Lack of supply boosts single-family construction starts – Calgary Herald

“Shovels turned for 82 more single-family homes in September than the same month in 2015, marking the largest year-over-year increase for the Calgary area this year.”.....more...

Ottawa’s new mortgage rules shaking up real estate market: CREA – The Hamilton Spectator

"For first-time home buyers, the stress test for those who need mortgage default insurance will cause them to rethink how much home they can afford to buy."....more...

Analysis: Mortgage stress test gets Poloz off the hook on interest hike: Don Pittis – CBC News

“Limits on CMHC backing for non-bank lenders and making sure Canadians with insured mortgages can deal with a sudden increase in interest rates — may be too broad. "There is the issue, of course, that not every market is necessarily hot right now, so it's possible you'll cool off some markets without needing to," says Davidoff.”....more...

October 12, 2016

Forestry today: Part I Lumber prices stay strong ahead of Softwood Lumber agreement - The OWL

"Once that price is converted into Canadian dollars, lumber prices actually remain near record-level highs of $C 460. But, it’s not just strong pricing that’s helping this industry. Even though homebuilders are using less lumber domestically, the strong housing market in pockets of the United States has been the key driver of Alberta’s forestry sector."....more...

Housing construction ticks upward in Calgary: CMHC – Calgary Sun

“Housing starts in Calgary — which have slowed significantly since the start of the recession — ticked up in September, according to the latest data from the CMHC.”....more...

How a new home purchase can give you peace of mind – Calgary Herald

“Every home built in Alberta since early 2014 has been backed by the province's New Home Buyer Protection Act, a warranty that mandates coverage ranging from one year for finishes and paint, to 10 years for structural components such as the frame and foundation.”....more...

Calgary developing sidewalk stickers to guide students to school – Metro Calgary

“Creating safe routes that will lead kids to school in complete communities.”.....more...

Cities with more active living Infrastructure have healthier residents – Professional Builder

“Communities that promote active living by investing in infrastructure like bike lanes, parks, and sidewalks have healthier residents, according to a study of 48 cities by the Gallup Organization.”....more...

October 11, 2016

Housing starts rebound – The OWL

“The good news is that home builders are pulling back on supply in reaction to softer demand—and that has helped keep the residential real estate market in reasonably good balance.”....more...

New Mortgage Rules “Going Too Far” – CHBA National

“On Monday, October 3rd, Finance Minister Morneau announced changes to Canada’s mortgage insurance regime, which he characterized as “preventative measures for a healthy, competitive and stable housing market.” However, many non-government analysts are suggesting that the government has taken a step—or several—beyond what is prudent. CHBA’s own analysis supports this latter view and CHBA is therefore very concerned about the impacts on potential homebuyers, particularly first-time homebuyers, and in turn on our industry and the economy. CHBA has engaged with the government accordingly, including in a meeting already with Minister Duclos and his staff. Read more on what CHBA is doing.”....more...

Canada's Mortgage Rules Could Leave Millennials Hanging, Study Says - Huffington Post Canada

“One thing is certain: Policy makers are in uncharted waters when it comes to taming the “Terrible Two” [but] the impact will be felt far beyond Vancouver, Toronto and the communities that surround them.”.....more...

Drywall Tariff Battle Heats Up – CHBA National

CHBA is pursuing several courses of action to address the extremely high tariffs on imported drywall.....more...

BoC survey: Companies expect better export growth – iPolitics.ca

“While companies are anticipating modestly better days ahead for exports, they’re also bracing for slower U.S. growth due to uncertainty about the outcome of the presidential election.”.....more...

October 6, 2016

New mortgage financing rules mean delays for Calgary home buyers – Global News

“CHBA is concerned about the impacts these rules will have on first-time homebuyers, particularly in slower markets. CHBA is continuing to collect data and analysis from its strategic partners on the impact of the mortgage rule changes as it prepares to take advocacy action”.....more...

Gary Lamphier: Alberta to top growth rankings in 2017, TD predicts – Edmonton Journal

“Pour yourself a drink, folks, and take a seat. Here’s something you probably haven’t heard in a while: Alberta is expected to lead the nation in economic growth next year. And the year after that.”....more...

2016/2017 Federal Government Consultations - CHBA

“As mentioned last week, CHBA President Bob Finnigan and CEO Kevin Lee spoke to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance during the Committee’s Pre-Budget Consultation Sessions.”.....more...

Council approves three new development plans – City view Airdrie

“After first approving an amendment to the Chinook Winds Community Area Structure Plan (CASP) City council approved Neighbourhood Structure Plans (NSP) for the new communities of Cobblestone Creek and Chinook...”....more...

Commuter transit ready to roll next week – Okotoks Western Wheel

“Commuters in the Foothills will have another way to travel to Calgary starting next week.” “The Calgary Regional Partnership’s On-It transit pilot project officially hits the road the morning of Oct. 11 as the first buses depart High River and Turner Valley around 6 a.m. They will pass through Black Diamond and Okotoks taking passengers to the Somerset LRT station in south Calgary.”.....more...

Should young buyers be looking at a move to Alberta? – YP Next Home

“So with the economy slowly turning around, now is a good time to get into the market”....more...

October 5, 2016

Calgary home sales down again in September despite balance in detached sector -BuzzBuzzNews

Calgary's detached sector shows signs of stability. ....more...

Calgary council approves $5.15 monthly transit pass for city's poorest – Calgary Herald

“Calgarians living in extreme poverty will soon pay just $5.15 for a monthly Calgary Transit pass — a 95 per cent discount off the regular price.”....more...

Green Line tunnel option approved in principle by Calgary city council – CBC News

“Calgary city council voted Tuesday in favour of what's seen as the best but most expensive option for the eventual new Green Line of the LRT — a $2-billion tunnel beneath Crescent Heights, the Bow River and downtown.”......more...

Osborne: City charters open the door to higher home prices, taxes – Calgary Herald

“Last week, Alberta Municipal Affairs Minister Danielle Larivee released her plans for City Charters, new provincial regulations that will give more power and control over local matters to both Calgary and Edmonton.”.....more...

October 4, 2016

Detached prices stabilize in soft market – CREB

“The segment of Calgary’s housing market with the greatest influence on the overall market is showing signs of pricing stability.”....more...

Minister Morneau Announces Preventative Measures for a Healthy, Competitive and Stable Housing Market - Department of Finance

Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced three measures designed to reinforce the Canadian housing finance system, to help protect the long-term financial security of borrowers and all Canadians, and to improve tax fairness for Canadian homeowners: 1. Bring consistency to mortgage insurance rules by standardizing eligibility criteria for high- and low-ratio insured mortgages, including a mortgage rate stress test; 2. Improve tax fairness by closing loopholes surrounding the capital gains tax exemption on the sale of a principal residence; and, 3. Consult on how to better protect taxpayers by ensuring that the distribution of risk in the housing finance system is balanced.....more...

Government of Canada Announces Pan-Canadian Pricing on Carbon Pollution - Environment and Climate Change Canada

“CHBA is considering how the establishment of federal and provincial carbon-pricing regimes may affect the residential construction industry. As noted in all CHBA energy-related communications with the federal government, the industry has made tremendous strides with voluntary, market-driven approaches to increased efficiency (like R-2000 and Net Zero Housing). CHBA is strongly promoting retrofits of existing homes as the industry’s major contribution to the government’s climate change agenda”......more...

Notley says no support for Liberal carbon price without pipeline progress – Calgary Herald

“Premier Rachel Notley says the federal government needs to deliver on a new pipeline or it won’t get Alberta’s support for its plan for a national carbon price.”......more...

Council approves rezoning of Harvest Hills golf course for real estate development – Calgary Herald

““Council approved the rezoning that will pave the way for a 716-unit housing development on a closed golf course late Monday despite hearing from dozens of Calgarians who voiced their vehement opposition to the plan.”.....more...

October 3, 2016

New Fund Aims to Revolutionize Affordable Rental Housing in Canada - Benzinga

“Funding is available to individuals and organizations who want to build affordable rental housing in Canadian communities where there is a demonstrated need.”....more...

SAIT partner builds first certified Net-Zero Energy Home in Alberta – SAIT

“Green Building Technologies (GBT) researchers are excited for industry partner Mattamy Homes, which built Alberta’s first-ever Net-Zero Energy (NZE) Qualified Home.”....more...

Impressive Eco-Friendly Homes in Alberta – AMA

“Here, we take a peek at the inner workings of three of the tour’s “net zero” homes—houses that generate as much energy they use, creating a net-zero outcome. These eco abodes show how adding green features can save you serious dollars in the long run—whether you’re renting, renovating or rebuilding.”.....more...

September 30, 2016

Alberta's Economy Set To Grow Faster Than Any Province Next Year – HuffPost Business

“Alberta's economic growth is set to beat all Canadian provinces next year and the one after, says a TD Provincial Economic Forecast released Thursday.”....more...

Braid: Dislike of carbon tax deepens as Albertans get ready to pay up – Calgary Herald

“A new poll by ThinkHQ Public Affairs shows that 63 per cent of respondents disapprove of the new carbon tax, which comes into effect Jan. 1.”....more...

What’s it take to create a new community that draws neighbours together? – Calgary Herald

“Creating a new community is an exciting endeavour because it’s the start of a legacy where relationships and friendships bond neighbours.” What makes a neighbourhood a community? “The people and the families that live there and how the community serves the need of those families,” says Jeff Smyth, president of Baywest Homes......more...

Council mum on Rocky View’s Glenbow Ranch community – Cochrane Times

“On Sept. 26, council heard some details on the Glenbow Ranch development Rocky View County (RVC) wants to build along Hwy 1A from Cochrane’s borders in the west to Calgary and Bearspaw in the east. Located between the Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park and the highway, the community is designed with the intent of having country residential next to Cochrane, denser housing in the centre and more single family type dwellings next to Calgary in order to preserve half the developable space for the conservation of wetlands, coulees and native grassland.”.....more...

September 29, 2016

2016/2017 Federal Government Consultations – CHBA National

Yesterday CHBA President Bob Finnigan and CEO Kevin Lee testified before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance as part of the 2017 Pre-Budget consultations.....more...

The City Charter – The City of Calgary

Interested in the proposed City Charter for Calgary? Be sure to attend one of the public open houses in October.....more...

What's oil doing? – The OWL

“The deal between OPEC nations has made some a little more optimistic about where the price of oil is heading; however, it’s unclear as to when the agreement would come into effect and how compliance with the cut will be verified.”.....more...

Developers concerned over side yard setbacks – Cochrane Eagle

“A public hearing and first reading of a bylaw calling to increase side yard setbacks resulted in a request by council for administration to find out possible legal ramifications if the bylaw were to pass following future readings.”.....more...

The Construction Business Goes Digital – The Wall Street Journal

“The Wall Street Journal reports that big builders and start-ups are using digital tools like drone mapping, 3-D printing, and virtual reality to cut down on delays and cost overruns. For instance, experts say that data-driven planning, surveillance, and maintenance could save the industry as much as $21 billion a year globally.”.....more...

Crowchild Trail plan would see bridge widened, traffic lights eliminated – Metro News

“If you cruise home on Crowchild, your drive could go much more smoothly by the end of the decade. The city is now at the phase five of its six-phase study, and it’s once again asking Calgarians to weigh in on the draft recommendations, which will go to city council this fall.”.....more...

Society Of Landscape Architects Release Guide To Resilient Design – Professional Builder

“A recently released online guide from the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) explains how communities can better protect themselves from natural disasters through resilient landscape planning and design.”.....more...

September 27, 2016

Change in leadership at CHBA-Alberta – Calgary Herald

Congratulations, Donna Moore, interim CEO at CHBA – Alberta.....more...

Weak inflation, retail data likely an 'eyebrow raiser' for Bank of Canada – BNN.ca

Market access for new generations of home buyers is important to the future health of housing markets. Without equity stakes, they will not be in a position to buy what Baby Boomers want to sell when ready. This is another impact of slower economic growth......more...

More options available in Calgary's multi-family real estate – Calgary Herald

“People looking for a quick move to a duplex, apartment or townhome had more to pick from in the Calgary area last month than the same time a year ago.”.....more...

Accessible University

Helpful information for making homes more accessible......more...

Best and brightest builders: UrbanAge Homes cleans up at CHBA – Alberta 2016 Awards of Excellence in Housing – Edmonton Journal

“The province’s premier home builders were recognized during the 2016 Awards of Excellence in Housing, held Friday, September 16 at the Canadian Home Builders’ Association – Alberta annual conference in Jasper.”.....more...

The future of infills – CREB Now

“I don’t think that there is a one-size-fits-all approach, but good communication with the community early in the process can help infill developers and builders understand the community context, which can, in turn, improve the fit in older communities.”.....more...

Downtown Calgary: A Train Runs Through It! – Everyday Tourist

“The track of the Canadian Pacific Railway is a fundamental part of our urban geography. It is a daily factor in our relationship with the core of our city. It bisects the core from the Beltline. It runs through our neighbourhoods. It has become so familiar that their significance in shaping our city can be easily overlooked. Yet now, in the wake of derailments, noise complaints, and visions of what our city's urban landscape should look like, Calgary's relationship with it's rail is again up for debate.”.....more...

September 23, 2016

Home renovation spending rises as Alberta recession lingers – CBC News

“As the economy drags Albertans are spending billions to upgrade their current homes.”....more...

From the ground up – CREB Now

For new home buyers building a new home is surprising affordable......more...

September 22, 2016

New federal approach to infrastructure delivers results for the middle class – Government of Canada

CHBA is actively engaged in advocating that federal infrastructure expenditures must increase affordability through coordinated efforts to link transit with complete communities. In this context, it is showing how federal lands, social housing redevelopment, and other federal investments can be leveraged to produce even better long-term affordability outcomes. Key to this effort will be adequate densities of development along transit lines and around stations.....more...

OECD cuts forecast for Canadian economic growth, trims global outlook – National Newswatch

OECD expects the Canadian economy to grow by 1.2% this year, half a point lower than its outlook in June. Growth next year is expected to be 2.1%, down from its earlier estimate of 2.2%.....more...

September 21, 2016

Alta. housing sales to finish strong, face challenges: report – CREB Now

“In 2017, CREA expects sales activity in Alberta to increase by 4.5 per cent to 53,800 units. CREA noted consumer confidence should start to strengthen and slowly draw homebuyers off the sidelines in Alberta and Saskatchewan as oil prices and economic prospects gradually improve.”....more...

What to Expect From a Home Builder – CHBA

When buying a new home here's what you can and should expect.....more...

September 2, 2016

Albertans boost renovation spending to$3.1 billion - CHBA Alberta

Spending on residential renovations continues to imporve in 2016....more...

New Era Begins for Social Housing Services in Alberta - CMHC

Today, Minister Kent Hehr, along with Alberta Minister Lori Sigurdson, announced an 18-year agreement that will provide close to $90 million to Alberta in the first year – from the Government of Canada – for the transfer of federally-funded social housing stock to the province....more...

New federal-provincial funding agreement to support important public transit projects in Calgary - Government of Canada

The governments of Canada and Alberta are making investments to create jobs and grow the middle class now while building a foundation for a strong, sustainable economic future. Investing in local infrastructure ensures Canadians have safe water and wastewater treatment systems that they can rely on. It also supports efficient, affordable and sustainable public transit systems to get to work, school and public services on time and back home safely at the end of a long day....more...

September 1, 2016

Alberta tourism still growing – The OWL

“A low loonie has not only increased international travellers to Alberta, but kept more Albertans in the province and enticed more Canadians to explore the country, leading to increased demand for tourism and tourism-related businesses.”....more...

Solar, wind, storage and big data: Why energy may soon be free - Reneweconomy

“Global investment bank Citi is predicting that the combination of near zero-variable cost energy sources such as solar and wind, along with smart analytics and “big data”, may deliver what the nuclear industry promised nearly half a century ago – free energy.”....more...

August 30, 2016

Varcoe: Get out your tricycle for the fast-track on capital spending – Calgary Herald

“The Trudeau and Notley governments are expected to sit down in the next few days to ink a formal deal on almost $550 million in new federal infrastructure spending for the province.”....more...

Getting personal – CREB Now

“Buyer’s preferences have also evolved. In the last five years, Lyall says she has seen a shift to less need for space.” “People are sacrificing having lots of space for less commuting time, for being in a more walkable area, she said. “The mega mansion of the ’90s is less desirable.”....more...

Energy efficient homes net interest from couple – City of Calgary

“When Jiwan and Vandana Sidhar first turned to Cityscape, it wasn’t to buy one of its innovative net zero homes. But that changed when they learned about the benefits of a home that produces as much energy as it consumes on an annual basis.”....more...

August 29, 2016

Expect To See More Purpose-Built Rental in Canadian Real Estate – HuffingtonPost.ca

The Canadian real estate market is a major driving factor for the economy right now, and the rental market segment is a contributing force. Purpose-built rental units are making a comeback and in coming years they will play a larger role in the Canadian rental real estate market. CHBA Commentary: CHBA has been actively engaged in developing advice for CMHC on the design of new purpose-built rental initiatives announced in the March 21, 2016 federal Budget.....more...

Retiring CEO worked to improve professionalism, service and education in the home building industry - Calgary Herald

"[Donna] Moore spent 32 years in various key roles with the residential industry group, including the CEO job for CHBA-Calgary Region since 1997. “Donna has had a tremendous impact on all things CHBA, everything from her leadership on the Calgary Home Builders Foundation, the advancement of the SAM (Sales and Marketing) awards, our efforts with city council or the growth in our membership over the years,” said CHBA-UDI Calgary Region Association president Allan Klassen. CHBA Commentary: Colleagues and friends in CHBA from across Canada join in wishing Donna Moore a very happy retirement, and urge her not to be a stranger!"....more...

August 26, 2016

Stephen Harper to give up Calgary seat today – CBC News

“Former prime minister Stephen Harper will resign today as a member of Parliament to take on a new role as a consultant.”....more...

Despite economic gloom, Toronto-based developers remain bullish on Calgary – Calgary Herald

“Calgary will continue to be an attractive place to live regardless of what happens to oil prices in the long-term.” “Toronto-based developers are taking a long-term view on the Alberta economy and moving ahead with multimillion-dollar projects.”....more...

Alberta earnings fall, but still stand 16.8% above national average – CBC News

“Albertans earned an average of $1,119 per week in June, according to Statistics Canada, which is down 2.4 per cent from a year earlier, but still ahead of every other province.”.....more...

Harvest Hills development gets Calgary Planning Commission approval – 660 News

“The Calgary Planning Commission has approved a controversial plan to develop the former Harvest Hills Golf Course.”....more...

August 23, 2016

More economic woe for Alberta as housing investments drop by a third – Edmonton Journal

“Jim Rivait, chief executive officer of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association — Alberta, said despite the drop, there is a glimmer of hope with some positive financial projections into next year. “ “Housing prices “are holding, so that’s an indication of some level of positivity about the market,” he said.“....more...

Built Green Canada Supports Ft. McMurray Rebuild - Build Green

"In light of the unimaginable destruction of the Ft. McMurray wildfires and subsequent flooding that has left thousands of Albertans displaced, Built Green Canada is working to support the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo’s (RMWB) rebuilding efforts."....more...

The Pros, Cons and Future of Tiny Houses - Canadian Motgage and Housing Corporation

Many advocates see tiny house living as a return to a simpler way of life less focused on material possessions.....more...

Economists warn policymakers to ‘proceed cautiously’ - Mortgage Broker News

A National Bank analysis traces one sixth of Canada’s annual consolidated government revenue to the jobs, income, spending and property values ultimately spun off from the housing market. “With so much at stake—economically and fiscally—policy makers would be wise to tread very careful … Here’s the bottom line: housing activity translates directly and indirectly to fiscal performance at all levels of government and in all corners of the country.”....more...

August 22, 2016

Forget The 'Canadian' Housing Market - It Doesn't Exist – Huff Post

“Real estate is local. Forget the "Canadian" market. There actually is no such thing.”....more...

June's wholesale trade numbers bring some good news – The OWL

‘Wholesale activity managed to jump up in June. According to this morning’s wholesale report…”....more...

Residential construction big driver in economic growth, latest report shows – Ottawa Citizen

The Canadian residential construction industry continues to be a major driver of the national economy according to the latest… report from the Canadian Home Builders’ Association. The report highlights that housing is still doing well, while the rest of the economy isn’t, says CHBA CEO Kevin Lee. It also shows “the sheer size of the industry, and that it operates in every community from coast to coast.” That industry largely comprises small and medium-sized enterprises that create jobs “and really drive the economy,” he says.....more...

Awards honour commitments to improving home building in Alberta – Calgary Herald

“The Canadian Home Builders’ Association-Alberta will honour outstanding volunteers for their dedicated service during the presentation of the Industry Leader Awards on Sept. 17 at the BUILD 2016 conference in Jasper. The recipients of these six awards have contributed greatly in such areas as industry-government relations, consultations on changes to major legislation that affects how the province operates, saving new home buyers from unnecessary fees from Canada Post, and commitment to making the residential home building industry better.”....more...

South Calgary active with new builds and resale homes – Calgary Herald

“While single-family housing activity is down in the Calgary area this year, the city’s south side continues to lead the way.“....more...

August 19, 2016

Homes With Latest Energy Ratings Now Available - HiBusiness

“An announcement was made by the Canadian Home Builders’ Association of the new set of houses that had the privilege to get the latest ratings of the new energy. The Net Zero energy homes were modeled, built and designed to give out as much energy as it takes up on a normal basis.”....more...

Why more Chinese investors are buying Calgary real estate – Global News Calgary

“Global's Gary Bobrovitz talks to the Calgary Real Estate Board and a local agent to find out why Chinese buyers are putting their money in Calgary real estate.”....more...

Retail sales fall but still show stabilization – The OWL

“Over the last complete 12 months, total retail spending is still only 3.5 per cent lower than the total over the previous 12 months. If we compare this with the labour market for example, or other sectors and economic indicators in Alberta, our retail sector is performing relatively well amid these tough conditions.”....more...

August 17, 2016

Report: Calgary Civic Census 2016 – Smarter Growth Initiative

“The 2016 Calgary Census tells us that while the number of dwellings under construction is down, the total number of homes has increased by 1.32%.”....more...

Report: Planning for the Future – Smarter Growth Initiative

“Learn how supporting new, diverse housing in established neighbourhoods is key for achieving density.”....more...

A Return To ‘Normal' Mortgage Rates Would Crush Canadians – The Huffington Post

“Don’t borrow what the bank is willing to lend you. Borrow what you know you can afford.” — John Andrew, Queen's University....more...

August 16, 2016

Billions in federal infrastructure money yet to flow to five provinces – CTV News

“The federal government has yet to sign infrastructure funding agreements with five provinces and two territories -- agreements that are a key step before any federal cash can flow to projects underway across the country. Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Nunavut and Northwest Territories have yet to sign funding deals.”....more...

Analysis - Carbon pricing is market friendly but may not be fair: Don Pittis - CBCNews

“The great thing about a carbon tax, instead of a government-imposed rule about exactly how much carbon a business should produce, is that businesses can weigh the cost of cutting carbon against other costs and make the most business-efficient choice about how and where to cut costs.”....more...

Amenity-rich Radius in 'trendy' Bridgeland a hit with young couple – Calgary Herald

“Its convenient central location near downtown Calgary; the walkable and eclectic places to shop and eat.”....more...

Alberta's solar-power sector can't keep up with demand for training courses – Edmonton Journal

“A lot of people will pose the challenge between solar and oil companies, but … the solar industry can grow completely alongside the oil industry with no effect on either,” he says. “Albertans are a pretty cool bunch and they take value in growing and getting into different markets.”....more...

Calgary businesses are closing their doors at an increasing pace – Calgary Herald

“The number and pace of business closings are growing amid Calgary’s struggling economy, say city statistics and those watching the trend.”....more...

August 10, 2016

Starting out – CREB Now

“What baby boomers referred to as a starter home was a home young families could afford. It would often be a one- or two-bedroom home, sometimes an older home,” Moore says, adding “that concept has really changed in our large cities today.” For example, the once-affordable half duplex has morphed into the attached home, which, today, usually comes with a much higher price tag than its humble predecessor.....more...

August 9, 2016

Growing Calgary suburbs do not point to housing oversupply: Expert – Metro News

“Huntingford said the development cycle in greenfield development is long – and you can’t turn the tap on or off easily.” “The stuff you see in the pipeline now was approved years and years ago, and if you have the ability to turn the tap on or off to match the market, you will. But I don’t think it would be fair to say what you see being built now is going to create all this over supply. That’s not the case at all.”....more...

The bull case for the loonie is getting a lot harder – The Globe and Mail

“Despite recent data showing a weakening of the domestic economy relative to the United States, the Canadian dollar is still one of the best-performing currencies in the world this year.”....more...

Calgary building permits continue to slide – AM770

“Figures from Statistics Canada show residential home construction permits are down 23% and overall permits about 40%. Todd Hirsch says it’s important to remember that the past few years have been record setting when it comes to construction activity.”....more...

Calgary Housing Starts Trend Increased in July - CMHC

"Total housing starts trended higher in July as the pace of single-detached and multiples construction increased from a month earlier," said Richard Cho, CMHC Principal Market Analyst. "Despite the increase last month, the trend in housing starts continues to remain below historical averages due to declines in full-time employment and increased supply in the new home and resale markets."....more...

Alberta building permit drop in June a 'healthy rebalancing,' says ATB economist – CBC News Calgary

"So the building permits in Alberta they are down from where they were of course about a year or two ago. And that's not a big surprise, in 2014 you saw a surge of building construction and activity and now it's all pulling back now that we're in a recession,"....more...

Green cart program ready to roll out in 2017 – Calgary Herald

“Calgary homeowners can expect green carts to arrive next spring as the city moves one step closer to rolling out its residential compost food and waste program, pending final approval of a $6.50-a-month levy at Monday’s council meeting.”....more...

August 8, 2016

HRAI Seeks to End Use of Gas Furnaces for Construction Heat - CHBA

In April, 2016, the Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Institute (HRAI) announced that it was seeking to ban the use of gas furnaces for construction heat, effective September 1, 2016. This decision was made internally at HRAI without consultation with the home building industry.The issue was accordingly brought by CHBA to its Technical Research Committee, which voted unanimously to oppose such a measure. CHBA thus began working in concert with OHBA and the Canadian Gas Association, with the support of other provincial HBAs across the country, to engage HRAI on this issue. The result thus far is that HRAI has extended the deadline to prohibit the use for construction heat of furnaces manufactured on or after May 1, 2017. Knowing that other more practical and adequate solutions are quite feasible, CHBA continues to oppose this measure and along with OHBA and others will continue to engage with HRAI accordingly.....more...

Calgary's luxury real estate market rebounds, Sotheby's report says – CBC News Calgary

“There are signs of a recovery in Calgary's higher-end real estate market, with almost 10 per cent more homes worth $1 million to $2 million changing hands so far this year, according to Sotheby's International Realty.”....more...

Prices dip for single-family homes through Calgary's resale market – Calgary Herald

“Buyers who turned to the city’s resale market for a single-family home last month saw more than $17,000 in savings, says the Calgary Real Estate Board.”....more...

4 things about condos near Calgary's core – Calgary Herald

“More people have moved to new apartment-style condos in downtown Calgary and the city’s Beltline district over the first half of 2016 than in the same period a year earlier.“....more...

Legacy brings on school, new show homes – Calgary Herald

“The city’s reigning community of the year has added new show homes and is about to break ground on its first school.”....more...

Signs emerge that hottest housing markets may be cooling – The Globe and Mail

“The Teranet-National Bank House Price Index, out Friday, will offer an updated look at national house prices, while new data on housing starts and building permits offer a glimpse of things to come.”....more...

Builders’ intentions continue to wane in June – The OWL

“Residential [building] permits picked up modestly in June to $510 million. But even with the slight improvement, there has been a noticeable drop in builders’ anticipated activity.”....more...

August 4, 2016

Calgary real estate market continues to cool as house sales drop for 20th month in a row – CBC News Calgary

“Calgary's real estate picture continues to diverge from the hot markets in Toronto and Vancouver with a 20th consecutive month of declining home sales in July.”....more...

Something about SHARP – CREB Now

“Local seniors’ housing officials are praising a new provincial government program designed to assist seniors who want to “age in place” in their homes rather than having to move.”....more...

The next step – CREB Now

“Buyers’ focus over the last several years has been increasingly focused on detached product priced over $500,000.”....more...

August 3, 2016

Alberta bankruptcies challenge expectations – The OWL

“Given the economic climate, businesses in Alberta continue to look decent from a bankruptcy perspective. In May, only seven businesses declared bankruptcy, up from six in April. What’s more impressive is that number is actually down from the same month last year.”....more...

Canada’s economy is growing at the slowest pace in 60 years and the only thing holding us up is housing – Financial Post

“Two years since oil prices started plunging; Canada’s economy is almost completely reliant for growth on bank lending and the hot Vancouver and Toronto housing markets generating fees for brokers. Real estate and financial services now account for 20 per cent of the economy.” CHBA Commentary: This isn’t news to the industry or to government. The big questions are whether other industries can step up and whether a global resource slump will continue to affect local housing markets.....more...

July 29, 2016

'Insane bigotry' fails to stall affordable housing proposal in ritzy Rosedale – Calgary Herald

“The city plans to build 16 affordable housing units on eight vacant, municipally-owned lots adjacent to a sound wall in the northwest community.”....more...

B.C. tax could drive more Chinese buyers to Calgary, realtors say – Calgary Herald

“Calgary’s real estate market could become more attractive to overseas buyers, realtors and experts say, in light of a new 15 per cent foreign buyer tax in B.C. aimed at cooling Vancouver’s overheated housing market.” “Juwai.com, China’s top international real estate website, has seen the number of inquiries about Alberta properties on its listing service increase “significantly” since the first half of last year, and especially in the last six months.”....more...

Five things about population impact on housing – CREB Now

“Population growth in Calgary will moderate moving forward and contribute to a decline in housing demand, according to a market brief issued earlier this month by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC).”....more...

The price is right for commercial real estate – Calgary Herald

“Yet for growing Calgary companies, the time couldn’t be better to find the right location to expand.”....more...

July 28, 2016

Wages cut...again – The Owl

“While Albertans continue to see their overtime and pay cut, wages here remain the highest of all the provinces. May’s earnings report shows Alberta is 16 per cent higher than the national average ($955.57).”....more...

Calgary's Best Neighbourhoods 2016 – Avenue Magazine

“For the seventh year in a row, Avenue has asked Calgarians what makes a neighbourhood great. The results are in, and the August issue of Avenue magazine lists this year’s top 50 best places to live in Calgary according to the data gathered in the survey.”....more...

Finalists named for Alberta's top housing awards – Calgary Herald

“The votes are in and the finalists are named for the top provincial awards in housing.”....more...

5 Benefits of Living in Calgary's Suburbs - NuVista Blog

“There are several advantages to living on the outskirts of Calgary.”....more...

There is not a ‘one size fits all’ housing policy that the federal government can implement – The Hill Times

“There is no single “Canadian housing market,” and policies made in Ottawa by the federal government by definition apply to the entire country. Further, there is a growing acknowledgement that concerns over ever-higher house prices is largely an issue confined to two cities, namely Toronto and Vancouver.”....more...

July 26, 2016

Why Calgary's real estate prices haven't been hit as hard as the rest of the economy — yet – CBC News

“At the same time, though, the number of owner-occupied homes actually grew by 3,700 to surpass 323,000, suggesting many of the people moving away from the city were leaving rental units, not homes they owned. It's unclear how many itinerant workers have left Calgary, specifically, but the departure of so many across the province does have other benefits for those who are still working and looking for work in Alberta.”....more...

Five things about population impact on housing – CREB Now

“Total population in Calgary is forecast to grow at its slowest rate since 2010, largely due to a decline in net migration, and contribute to weaker demand for housing,” said Richard Cho, senior market analyst in Calgary for CMHC’s Prairie region.....more...

Bowness draws back neighbours to make new home at Arrive – Calgary Herald

[Among] the latest townhome development built by [a CHBA – UDI Calgary Region member] eleven units of the 50-unit development will be sold through [the developer directly], and the other 39 will go through Attainable Homes Calgary Corp… a wholly owned subsidiary of the City of Calgary that runs a home ownership program aimed at helping middle-income earning Calgarians afford the down payment on a new home. Commentary: An increasing number of CHBA-Member firms are working on innovative ways to expand housing affordability. One example is described in this article in Calgary. Both the developer and a City-owned corporation facilitate access to home ownership for those in the middle class and aspiring to join it.....more...

July 25, 2016

6 things: to know about multi-family real estate in Airdrie and Cochrane – Calgary Herald

“While multi-family housing cooled off in the Calgary area over the first six months of 2016, there were gains in Airdrie and Cochrane.”....more...

Safety coming first at new home worksites, with increases to inspections – Calgary Herald

“The provincial government has hiked residential construction site inspections by Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) officers as part of the Alberta Labour’s Proactive Strategic Programs. This upswing in visits on weekends and outside regular work hours started June 1 and will end Sept. 30.“....more...

Customers single out top builders for service – Calgary Herald

“Jayman Built and Brookfield Residential’s multi-family division were recently announced as winners in this year’s Avid awards.”....more...

Businesses concerned about extended paid parking in the core – CTV News Calgary

“City council approved the change in June and said the goal is to create more turn-over in high demand parking spaces, some of which are used overnight.”....more...

July 22, 2016

Retail sales still stabilizing – The OWL

“While May was a very difficult month for many Albertans—businesses included—there may be a lift to retail sales on the horizon. In fact, the next few reports may show a slight increase in sales.”....more...

Home-building boom expected for Fort McMurray, Alta., after fires, CMHC says – Canadian Business

“A home-building boom in wildfire-ravaged Fort McMurray, Alta., is expected to start later this year and expand in 2017, the likes of which haven’t been seen in 20 years, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. said Thursday.”....more...

July 21, 2016

Fort McMurray After the Fire: Anticipated Housing Market Response - CMHC

“CMHC released its latest Housing Market Insight (PDF) (HMI) report on Fort McMurray and the anticipated housing market response post fire.”....more...

Jobsite safety is crucial – Lethbridge Herald

“Speed and efficiency are certainly important in the construction industry – or any industry, for that matter – but cutting corners from a safety perspective not only can’t be justified, but ultimately is counterproductive anyway because a workplace accident only reduces productivity. When a serious injury or death results, that’s a consequence that can’t be undone.”....more...

Edmonton area mayors vote down higher density housing targets - Edmonton Journal

As CHBA has been pointing out to the federal government, unless there are adequate densities of development along transit lines and around stations, it is very unlikely to be economically viable. This is a major looming issue as long-term federal infrastructure funding arrangements are designed for the 2017 Budget.....more...

July 20, 2016

Canadian millennials still stuck in the basement as youth unemployment surges – Financial Post

As CHBA continues to document, “failure to launch” by substantial numbers of Millennials, and also new immigrants to Canada with the means, will have long-term consequences for the whole economy, including housing markets. Coordinated public-private and multi-governmental action becomes more urgent with each passing month.....more...

Leading expert says, ‘Land and homes tend to be disappointing investments’ – Globe and Mail

[Robert Schiller says] “Buy land: They’re not making it anymore. That often repeated adage sounds like good financial advice. But over the long run, it hasn’t been … When you add [it] all together, the slow long-term pace of farmland and home price increases is not surprising. Nor would it be shocking if this trend continued for the next century, despite price surges over the last few years." Commentary: The data sources, methodology and overall results of Professor Schiller’s assessment of land and housing markets are questionable and leave out key factors. Land and housing values are key reflectors of the growth of overall wealth. In Canada, they currently exceed $4 trillion, having risen by $215 billion annually over the past eight years alone -- by 57% in real terms and 3.5 times the rate of inflation. These rising values capture the “agglomeration economies” of cities, as well as the collective accumulation of assets, results of technological innovation, and benefits of successfully managed systems.....more...

Province ramps up home construction inspections – AM770

“It’s up to the company to make sure that they’re hiring people that have competancy, not just in workmanship, but are also strong in their safety record as well.”....more...

Notley says slow Canadian economic growth part of NDP's case for pipelines – Calgary Herald

“Premier Rachel Notley says a slowing Canadian economy will be a key part of her message to her fellow premiers as she pitches the need to get new pipeline projects built.”....more...

July 19, 2016

National home sales are slowing, but only because hot markets can’t keep up with demand – Financial Post

It is too soon to determine whether a drop in sales activity is a signal of a peaking market. The main message, captured by this report, is that local market dynamics are quite different across Canada.....more...

Alberta recession one of the most severe ever, TD Economics report finds – CBC News

“Even in recession, after so many years of country-leading growth figures, Alberta is still poised to have much higher GDP per capita than any other province. It's expected to drop this year to $77,000, but that compares with $53,000 in the rest of Canada.”....more...

Calgary Luxury Condos Somehow Sell At Highest Prices In 3 Years – Huffpost Alberta

A riverfront development in Calgary has bucked the recent downward trend in luxury condominium sales in the city, after selling a unit for $8.4 million.....more...

A return to balanced – CREB Now

“The detached market has been gradually moving toward more balanced conditions, helping to prevent price levels from declining at the faster rates we saw in the previous two quarters.”....more...

Ready to take flight – CREB Now

“The economics are relatively straightforward: more travellers from overseas equate to more interest in Calgary property.”....more...

Changing times – CREB Now

“The impact (on builders) is stairs will be less steep, but they’ll also be wider, meaning we’ll take a bit more space to design stairs,” Laroche says. Another major change increases flexibility of decorative elements on handrails and guards placed 4.2 metres above the floor or less, Laroche says, meaning designs are no longer restricted to vertical lines to prevent climbing.....more...

July 18, 2016

Get involved – Alberta Government

The government of Alberta is seeking input from stakeholders, Indigenous communities and interested Albertans on how to promote energy efficiency and community energy systems across Alberta.....more...

The Prime Minister of Canada and the Premier of Alberta announce new infrastructure agreement – Alberta Government

“The Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, and the Premier of Alberta, Rachel Notley, announced funding to construct the southwest portion of the Calgary Ring Road.”....more...

Duplexes see uptick in building starts – Calgary Herald

“While new construction of townhomes and apartments cooled off in June, it was the busiest month for duplex starts in more than a year.”....more...

Unconventional Panel: How old is too old to live at home? – CBC News

“According the latest census, 42 per cent of Canadians in their 20s still live with mom and dad.”....more...

Energy efficiency earns a bigger discount with CMHC-insured financing – Calgary Herald

“Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. has increased its Green Home premium refund to as much as 25 per cent, depending on the level of energy efficiency in the home, says the federal agency. Prior to that, the refund topped out at 10 per cent.”....more...

Okotoks sees upside to new growth – Calgary Herald

“The Hollingers see Okotoks as an ideal place for raising a young family. It’s why they moved to the foothills town eight years ago — and, now ready for a new home, it’s why they decided to stay.”....more...

July 15, 2016

CRA targeting unregistered, small-town contractors in tax evasion crackdown – Financial Post

CHBA Commentary: “This story contains a dual message. One is that, as CHBA stresses, the housing industry is a tremendous counter-cyclical economic force that can counter economic downturns in other sectors. The other is that “underground” activity is undesirable from multiple perspectives. Those wanting to build a career in our industry should be encouraged to pursue legitimate career paths. Those who chose to become involved in the underground ‘cash’ economy must be rooted out by government. Again, government tax credits for energy upgrading could be the most useful tool to achieve this, as CHBA advocates.”....more...

Under the Table Savings Not Worth the Risk: CHBA - VOCM

“The Canadian Home Builders Association is warning homeowners to think twice about using cash and paying under the table for home improvements.”....more...

July 14, 2016

Oil downturn leads to rise in underground contractors – CBC News Calgary

“There are many potential problems with underground contractors. If they are not insured, the homeowner could be liable if someone suffers an injury while working at the property. In addition, the quality of work may suffer.”....more...

Home sweet retirement-funding home: One in five Canadians plan to sell property to pay for retirement – Financial Post

HSBC, which interviewed 18,207 people in 17 countries around the world, found 20 per cent of pre-retirees in Canada plan to downsize, or sell their primary and secondary residence in order to fund their retirement. That compares with five per cent of current retirees who will sell to fund retirement.....more...

Why low interest rates may last for the rest of your life – Globe and Mail

More evidence and analysis in support of the CHBA contention that Canada is facing new economic and demographic fundamentals, which call for creative thinking about policy solutions, notably regarding access by those now being excluded from housing market participation.....more...

Modern public infrastructure project delivery – ReNew Canada

Governments in Canada, at all levels, are making public infrastructure investments a priority. Many of these investments will involve undertaking big projects. But big infrastructure projects have big risks.....more...

Bank of Canada Curbs Economic Forecast, Keeps Key Rate Steady – The Wall Street Journal

“Canada’s central bank held its key interest rate steady Wednesday as it downgraded its economic growth forecast in response to a weaker investment outlook and sluggish exports.”....more...

Alberta housing starts respond to conditions – The OWLk of Canada Curbs Economic Forecast, Keeps Key Rate Steady – The Wall Street Journal

“Even though housing starts jumped up in June, the latest housing report suggests Alberta’s homebuilders are continuing to scale back.”....more...

July 13, 2016

6 Reasons Your Agent Wants You Pre-Approved Before Showing You Homes – Lighter Side of Real Estate

“Let’s face it, shopping for a home before getting pre-approved for a mortgage is like walking into a grocery store without a wallet. You may have the desire to buy, but you lack the ability.”....more...

July 12, 2016

City committee endorses $5.15 monthly transit pass for Calgary's poorest – Calgary Herald

“The changes to the low-income pass program will go into effect in 2017 if approved by council.”....more...

How home sales benefit the greater economy – CREA Café

“The real estate industry makes a lot of people happy: first-time buyers in their new homes, move-up buyers levering home equity into dream homes and move-down empty nesters happily planning their next stage in life. Now we can add one more group to this list: governments! And, that’s due to the nearly $10 billion in annual tax revenue generated by Canadian housing transactions through Board Multiple Listing Service (MLS®) Systems.”....more...

Council’s secondary suite plan not adequate, says developer – Metro News

“He believes if the city wants real reform on secondary suites, it needs to allow them in the communities outside the proposed zone as well.” “We don’t have to build new fire stations, new infrastructure, new power, and new water to new areas if more people can live in the existing area. So it’s more environmentally friendly,” he said.....more...

July 11, 2016

DRHBA: Energy-efficiency and affordability tools that really pay off - Toronto Sun

“There are two topics in housing that all Canadians seem to be talking about: affordability and sustainability. The federal government actually has a number of cost-neutral tools it can use to address both of these issues. The Canadian Home Builders’ Association (CHBA) has worked hard to find effective solutions for these issues and recently submitted eight great ideas to the federal government that address both of these topics.”....more...

Sales start to pick up for townhomes and apartment condos in Calgary – Calgary Herald

“Resale activity for apartments and townhomes in June was the busiest the city has seen in 11 months but both segments were still slower than the same time frame last year.“....more...

Calgary Housing Starts Trend Slightly Higher in June - CMHC

"Total housing starts trended higher in June as the pace of single-detached and multiple construction increased slightly from the previous month," said Richard Cho, CMHC Principal Market Analyst.....more...

Calgary's housing development future depends on aligning city, industry priorities – Calgary Herald

A Q and A with CHBA – UDI Calgary Region’s first Chair.....more...

Take a tour of the Stampede Dream Home – Calgary Herald

“For its 21st Stampede Rotary Dream Home, Homes by Avi has returned to its roots and built a charming bungalow with an Arts and Crafts sensibility, including a covered front porch with a barrel arch over the door and a gabled roofline.”....more...

July 7, 2016

New measures protect Fort McMurray residents during rebuild - Journal of Commerce

"Good builders are ready to meet the new requirements to work in Fort McMurray. Our members across Alberta support this enhanced consumer protection to ensure homeowners can rebuild with confidence," said Jim Rivait, CEO, CHBA-Alberta in a press release. "We have already heard from companies outside of Alberta making unrealistic claims about how quickly and cheaply they can build here. Protecting residents from unqualified and unscrupulous contractors at this critical time should be a priority."....more...

Study calls for less red tape to speed up home building - inews880

"A new thinktank study has found oppressive municipal regulations are reducing the supply of new homes and therefore raising prices in Canada’s largest cities."....more...

July 6, 2016

From wildfires to floods, climate change forcing builders to rethink design - Calgary Herald

"Severe weather events like wildfires and floods are becoming more frequent and more difficult to predict, forcing architects and engineers to rethink how they design buildings, infrastructure and cities."....more...

Ashby: If millennials can't master this economy, then let's change it – Ottawa Citizen

CHBA advocates that every community needs a range of housing options so that it can strike a balance between housing types that are affordable but also meet the needs and desires of citizens at each stage of life.....more...

Liberal government silent on pledge to let more homebuyers dip into their RRSPs - CBC News

[During the 2015 election campaign] the Liberal Party pledged to make housing more affordable by widening the rules on who could raid their RRSPs to buy a home. But nine months after winning the election, Ottawa is silent on the pledge. And some experts predict it will continue to remain mum. They believe the Liberal government concluded it had no choice but to shut down an election promise that would only help further ignite Toronto and Vancouver's already overheated housing markets. Commentary: CHBA will continue to advocate that Millennials and immigrants must be facilitated in entering housing markets. There are many options over and above modifications of RRSP withdrawal rules, which were modest in scope as proposed in 2015.....more...

July 5, 2016

How transit hubs can spur dense development - Globe and Mail

Increasing density around transit hubs is crucial to the province’s plan to deal with the increased population influx arriving over the coming years. Commentary: CHBA advocates that government get the maximum benefit out of investments in public transit infrastructure by increasing residential densities along transit corridors and at nodes.....more...

Subdued business outlook for the next year, Bank of Canada poll says - National Newswatch

Consumer spending and residential investment continue to offset the lack of business investment. Economic uncertainties in Canada and abroad keep businesses hesitant about taking the investment risks that are needed to generate increased economic growth.....more...

Why smart money is still investing in Canadian houses - CBC News

Now, maybe more than ever, houses are a financial investment…. While that may not be good for young Canadians hoping to get into the market, there are no signs new government rules will change that in the short term. In fact, a new flood of money into the global economy from central banks in an attempt to counteract the depressing effect of the Brexit vote only makes putting cash into real estate a sounder financial investment.....more...

Home prices down, but not out - Creb

"Calgary home prices continue to slide in most areas of the market, but not at the rate that many might expect. This is partly due to June’s resiliency in the detached and semi-detached sectors of the market, where sales compared to new listings and standing inventory started returning to more balanced levels."....more...

July 4, 2016

The United States is Alberta's best customer - The Owl

The US is by far our best customer. Our American cousins bought $80.5 billion worth of goods from us last year. This represents a whooping 87 per cent of our total international exports.....more...

Board elected for amalgamated builder, developer industry group - Calgary Herald

"A board of directors and new chair is now in place for a group representing the city’s housing and land development industries that amalgamated earlier this year."....more...

Livingston dubbed future 'downtown of the north' in Calgary - 660 News

“With where the demographic of the city is going, from a baby-boomer, millennial and then the migrants that we’ve had come into the city and really creating a mix for what we have, I think we’re going to be able to hit all those points,” he said. By the end of this year and going into next, builders will have showhomes in place and sales will begin in the first quarter of 2017.....more...

June 30, 2016

Earnings still drifting lower - The Owl

"Albertans shouldn’t feel too hard done by. Even more than a year into a recession, average weekly earnings are still the highest among the provinces and 18 per cent above the national rate of $955."....more...

New law will protect Fort McMurray residents from 'unscrupulous' builders - CBC News

"Protecting Fort McMurray residents from unqualified or unscrupulous contractors is a high priority," said Jim Rivait, CEO of the Alberta branch of the home builders association. "Good builders will be able to comply easily and, we believe, raise confidence levels of consumers when they're choosing a builder," Rivait said.....more...

June 28, 2016

Three Amigos to align on climate, clean energy, says White House - iPolitics.ca

Mexico, the United States and Canada will release “a comprehensive North American climate, clean energy and environment partnership” that will lay out the specific steps along which the countries will align on a continent-wide basis.....more...

As Fort McMurray rebuilds, fire chief wants more wildfire resilience - National Newswatch

Fort McMurray fire chief Darby Allen says houses should be built much further away from the dense boreal forest that surrounds them and be made out of materials that prevent fire from spreading as easily — from the kind of shingles used to a home's siding.....more...

Braid: CalgaryNEXT depends on a levy the province has suspended – Calgary Herlad

“The Alberta government has stopped accepting applications for the community revitalization levy — the very program essential to the CalgaryNEXT plan for a new hockey rink, field house and football field.”....more...

The Link opens four show homes in Evanston – Calgary Herald

“A combination of value and prime location have helped drive early interest in a northwest Calgary townhome development that recently unveiled four new show homes.”....more...

June 27, 2016

Housing investment drops – The Owl

“The latest housing investment numbers show that Alberta’s housing market may be starting to face the effects of this current economic slowdown. The trend of lower investment in all forms of construction is likely to persist throughout the summer.”....more...

June 24, 2016

Alberta's ties with Britain - The Owl

"Yesterday’s [Brexit} vote could be a good chance for Britain and Canada to expand their ties and increase trade."....more...

4 ways Brexit could affect Canadians - The Star

"Expect more obstacles to trade, a higher U.S. dollar, and a continuation of historically low interest rates now that the U.K. has voted to leave the EU."....more...

June 22, 2016

Home renovation budgets rise as Canadians shift to outdoor projects: CIBC Poll - CNW

“Canadians homeowners planning to renovate expect to spend an average of $13,000 on home improvements this year as the renovation focus shifts to the outdoors, such as building or repairing decks and patios and landscaping yards and gardens.”....more...

CMHC Increases Premium Refunds for Energy Efficient Houses - CMHC

“Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is increasing its CMHC Green Home premium refund from 10% to as much as 25% depending on the level of energy-efficiency achieved.”....more...

Retail sales shows encouraging lift in April – The OWL

“In April, the value of retail sales jumped two per cent over the previous month to $6.25 billion. That was the highest level since last November.”....more...

How big is Canada's underground economy? $45.6 billion – CTV News

“Earlier this month CHBA met with Minister of National Revenue Diane Lebouthillier, Parliamentary Secretary Emmanuel Dubourg and others as part of the Minister’s Underground Economy Advisory Committee [of which CHBA was a founding member]. CHBA has contributed actively to the development of CRA’s Underground Economy Strategy (noted above). During the meeting, the Minister confirmed her strong support for the Committee’s work, CHBA participation, and the government’s desire to develop more collaborative initiatives like Get it in Writing!”....more...

June 20, 2016

Eight facts about the single-family housing market in N.W. Calgary – Calgary Herald

"May was an eventful month for both the new and resale single-family home markets in northwest Calgary. Here are eight things that happened in the quadrant in May."....more...

BILD: If renovating, ensure good communications with your neighbours – Toronto Sun

Before the hammers start swinging, be sure to discuss your renovation plans with those next door, behind you, across from you and further down the street. A RenoMark Renovator can help answer any questions your neighbours may have, from architectural design to zoning bylaw compliance.....more...

June 17, 2016

Canadian Prime Minister Vows to Tackle Housing Affordability – The Wall Street Journal

“Economists at Bank of Montreal this week warned the government that any further initiatives aimed at curbing housing price growth should target speculators and offshore investors, arguing that anecdotal evidence and unofficial studies suggest foreigners are helping to push house prices upward.”....more...

Your cross-Canada short-term housing forecast – Mortgage Broker News

“Good news for brokers in Alberta and Saskatchewan, who have had a tough go of things for the past two years, as a slight oil rebound is expected.”....more...

Calgary couple seek neighbours to share luxury-condo lifestyle – The Globe and Mail

“According to stats from the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC), the number of owner-occupied condos in Canada grew sevenfold between 1981 and 2011 to 1.6 million homes. That’s nine times faster than any other type of home in the past 30 years. Per capita, twice as many Canadians live in condos as Americans.”....more...

New home inspections and maintenance information – City of Calgary

“As a homeowner, you should ask many questions about the quality, safety, maintenance and bylaw rules about your home before you move in.”....more...

June 16, 2016

Alberta housing construction on par with national average - The Owl

"That’s almost precisely the national average of 5.5 new homes—not bad for an economy that is facing a second year of contraction.".....more...

Green Line LRT tunnel through downtown looking more likely - CBC News

It's looking more and more likely the Green Line LRT will go underground through downtown Calgary.....more...

Calgary needs laneway housing design guidelines: Druh Farrell - Metro News

Coun. Druh Farrell thinks for the laneway houses to take off, the City of Calgary needs to turn to other jurisdictions and follow suit with design regulations to help boost public interest and halt the practice from turning into just another suite debate.....more...

June 15, 2016

Building an inclusive and innovative Canada - Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

The government’s innovation agenda will focus on six broad economic challenges: promoting an entrepreneurial and creative society; supporting global science excellence; building world-leading clusters and partnerships; growing companies and accelerating clean growth; competing in a digital world; and, improving ease of doing business.....more...

June 14, 2016

An ambulance at the bottom of a cliff - Calgary Sun

CHBA provides input into the review process for the proposed Municipal Government Act (MGA. "The Alberta Municipal Affair's (AMA) agenda included an overview of 25 policy issues in the new, proposed MGA, some of which are municipal relationships, elected officials training (good idea) farmland assessments, offsite levies, development appeal boards and more.".....more...

Brookfield calls for movement on Seton's shovel-ready 212th Avenue interchange - Calgary Herald

"As the list of amenities at Seton grows, the company behind the mixed-use development is looking for improved access to it and other major investments in the quadrant.".....more...

C.D. Howe Institute: Canada’s housing problem is supply, and the solution is local, not federal - Globe and Mail

What can federal policy makers do about surging house prices? Unfortunately, not much – because the core problem is a lack of low-cost, single-family homes in those cities, driven in part by local and provincial government policies. While demand-side policies continue to be the flavour of the day, they have had mixed results. Better to focus on bringing more supply to market......more...

Green infrastructure’s impact on flooding underrated - REMINetwork

Green stormwater infrastructure may be more effective than believed. Research shows GSI can eliminate run-off from the 90th percentile of rainfall events through managing rain where it falls using functions like infiltration, evapotranspiration and reuse......more...

Foreign buyers driving Calgary’s luxury real estate market - Globe and Mail

“Chinese interest in Alberta is growing at a rapid pace,” says Juwai.com chief executive Charles Pittar. “Of course, it’s starting off a much lower base than British Columbia or Ontario, so rapid growth doesn’t mean the Chinese have suddenly become huge buyers of Alberta property, but what these trends show is that Alberta is starting to appear on the radar of Chinese buyers......more...

More tourists choose AlbertaMore tourists choose Alberta - The Owl

"As tourism continues to grow its roots across the province, it could also encourage spending on tourism and infrastructure-related projects, such as hotels and roads. This is especially important because these projects create and maintain jobs."....more...

June 13, 2016

Calgary's builders, developers donate to support Fort Mac residents - Calgary Herald

"Members of Calgary’s residential industry are stepping up to help victims of the fire that destroyed thousands of homes and businesses in Fort McMurray.".....more...

Alberta will stay in recession this year before rebounding in 2017, Conference Board of Canada forecasts - CBC News

"Alberta's economy will remain in recession this year as the province struggles with its worst downturn in three decades, but there is a recovery on the horizon, according to the Conference Board of Canada.".....more...

June 10, 2016

Airdrie named one of Alberta’s best communities for business - City View Airdrie

"Amid the economic turbulence brought on by low oil prices, Airdrie has remained one of the province’s best communities for business according to Alberta Venture magazine.".....more...

June 9, 2016

Developers strengthen building intentions in April – The OWL

"Despite tumbling in March, the value of building permits picked up in April.".....more...

In wake of train tragedy, new rules urged for development near railway – Calgary Herald

“With something this important, you absolutely need to have a very clear policy and a very clear direction” - Guy Huntingford on rail policy for Calgary.....more...

June 8, 2016

Minister Lebouthillier committed to combatting the underground economy - Canada Revenue Agency

Minister of National Revenue Diane Lebouthillier and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue Emmanuel Dubourg met [on June 6] with members of the Minister’s Underground Economy Advisory Committee [including CHBA] to look at ways to join forces to more actively combat the underground economy in Canada. Commentary: Formed under the previous government, this committee of business organizations provides input to the Minister and to CRA on how best to combat underground economic activity. Minister Lebouthillier indicated her strong support for the Committee’s work, CHBA’s participation, and the government’s desire to develop more collaborate anti-UE actions like CHBA’s Get it in Writing! Program.....more...

Risks to Canadian economy pile up as outlook looks bleaker and bleaker - Financial Post

Export activity and business investment has slipped this year. As a result, the overall economy has wobbled into the second quarter — and could end up negative overall — along with inconsistent and often weak job creation.....more...

Canadian Housing Starts Trend Declines in May - Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

The trend of housing starts was 191,000 units in May compared to 194,950 in April. The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates of housing starts.....more...

Housing starts struggling – The OWL

“After a bit of an unexpected jump higher in April, housing starts in Alberta slumped again last month back down to the level where it has been for much of 2016.”....more...

June 6, 2016

Winning student home design maximizes space and relates to surroundings – Calgary Herald

“A focus on lifestyle, connection to the outdoors and clamping down on unusable space were priorities in the winning home design by Dayron Ramirez Corbo.”....more...

Autumn will mark turning point for Alberta's economy, predicts economist – Calgary Herald

“The best way to predict the future is to create it, and this is where I have an incredible amount of optimism for this city and for this province. Home builders are a big part of that”- Todd Hirsch.....more...

Convenience built into lifestyle in Nolan Hill – Calgary Herald

“When Tony Zhao and Sandy Wu decided on the location for their next home, they weren’t just impressed by the community, they were won over by what surrounded it.”....more...

City unveils its Suburban Residential Growth forecast - The Calgary Sun

“The City of Calgary’s Corporate Economics Division (CCED) has released its Suburban Residential Growth forecast for the years 2016 to 2020, which estimates population projection and total housing forecast as compiled in fall 2015.”....more...

Non-permanent residents in Alberta – The OWL

“Waves of non-permanent residents have mirrored Alberta’s economic cycles.”....more...

Province proposes changes to Municipal Government Act – The Calgary Sun

“The MGA is the most important piece of provincial legislation for our industry and your association is ready to ensure your voice is prominent in this conversation.”....more...

Timing of economic rebound from Alberta wildfire hard to forecast: Poloz – the Globe and Mail

“Bank of Canada governor Stephen Poloz says it’s hard to predict when the Canadian economy will rebound from the huge Alberta wildfire that destroyed communities and forced the shut down of crucial oil operations.”....more...

June 3, 2016

Calgary councillors consider allowing backyard skateboard ramps - Global News

The City of Calgary is considering allowing residents to set up skateboard ramps in their backyards......more...

CREB's numbers show Calgary remains a buyer's market - 660 News

"The latest numbers from the Calgary Real Estate Board give more proof of why the city remains a buyer’s and not a seller’s market.".....more...

Help Canadian Housing and Homeowners Continue to Lead the Way: Submission to the Federal Government’s Consultations on Canada's Approach to Climate Change - Canadian Home Builders’ Association

The federal government has launched a new type of online consultation on its approach to climate change - specifically geared to social engagement. Therefore, Views, Comments, Follows and Shares are critical to elevating ideas above the fray. CHBA encourages all members and HBAs to engage and interact on its proposals for climate change action – let’s make it the most popular submission the government receives!.....more...

June 1, 2016

OECD says stimulus, stable oil to lift Canada growth, but warns on housing, debt - Financial Postt

Canada’s economy could lag behind the world average this year, but will pick up speed in 2017 as the resource sector stabilizes and new fiscal measures begin to be felt. The OECD and the Bank of Canada forecast Canadian GDP growth of 1.7% this year.....more...

Alberta moves to empower local governments, strengthen community collaboration - Alberta Government

The Alberta government introduced Bill 21, the Modernized Municipal Government Act, proposing changes to the Municipal Government Act (MGA). CHBA – Alberta is preparing a summary of key issues for our industry, stay tuned.....more...

Ottawa not tracking how cities spend gas-tax money, watchdog warns - Globe and Mail

CHBA actively advocates that the effectiveness of infrastructure funding be tracked and shared widely in order to increase accountability at all levels. Recent federal commitments to invest billions more in transit and other municipal infrastructure make public reporting especially urgent to fix for everyone involved.....more...

How's life in Canada? - OECD Better Life Initiative

This OECD study provides a comprehensive picture of people’s material conditions and quality of life across the population in eleven dimensions including: income and wealth; jobs and earnings; housing; health status; work-life balance; education and skills; social connections; civic engagement and governance; environmental quality; personal security; and subjective well-being.....more...

May 27, 2016

Oil prices crawling higher – The Owl

"Signs of stronger demand, as well as falling production are part of the reason why oil markets have rallied back. Over the summer, oil prices could push higher. Especially as some OPEC countries like Nigeria, Venezuela and Libya continue to experience production outages."....more...

Alberta fires push oil prices to seven-month high – Weather Network

"It has been revealed the fires have also contributed to a seven-month high for oil, with prices hitting $50 a barrel for the first time since October 2015."....more...

May 26, 2016

Bank of Canada holds benchmark interest rate steady at 0.5% again – CBC News

"The economy is expected to rebound in the third quarter, as oil production resumes and reconstruction begins," the bank said.....more...

May 25, 2016

City-owned attainable home ownership program expands to Bowness

Attainable Homes Calgary Corporation (AHCC), in partnership with Partners Development Group, today released the details of a new BUILT GREEN® townhouse development in Bowness.....more...

[Video] House-poor Canadians in jeopardy: Report - Globe and Mail

Economist Ian Lee makes much of the same commentary on housing markets that Ben Tal made at the CHBA Conference in Kelowna. Both of these well-noted economists’ views align with CHBA’s commentary on housing markets. Actual behaviour shows declining risks from several perspectives, based on effective consumer debt management practices, and sound underwriting by lenders.....more...

Minister Carr Celebrates ENERGY STAR® Canada Award Winners - Natural Resources Canada

“The ENERGY STAR awards demonstrate how Canadian businesses and organizations across the country are driving the transition to a low-carbon, clean-growth economy, growing the number of energy-efficient products and homes in the market and making it easier for consumers to save money and reduce energy use” –Jim Carr, Minister of Natural Resources.....more...

Millennials want to buy homes, but haven’t started saving - Advisor.ca

Two thirds (64%) of millennials plan to make the move to home ownership, but 44% say they have not started to save. Here are some additional findings. • 16% of Canadians aged 18-34 have already bought a home. • 45% say managing competing financial priorities, such as paying down debt, is another roadblock to home ownership. • 77% of Canadians say buying a home today is more difficult for young Canadians than it was for previous generations.....more...

Do long-time renters stand a chance of home ownership? - Globe and Mail

Many Millennials face stiff headwinds when it comes to finding permanent, well-paying jobs. This age group also suffered most during the 2008 financial crisis. On top of this, they are faced with larger student debts and higher house prices. CHBA will continue to press strongly for practical measures to facilitate access to home ownership by Millennial and immigrant renters who aspire to it. Not only their interests but those of future sellers amongst existing homeowners depend heavily on it.....more...

May 24, 2016

Opinion: NEB recommendation a milestone for Canada's future – Vancouver Sun

Getting the green light on energy infrastructure projects such as the Trans Mountain expansion would be a tremendous stimulus for the Canadian economy.....more...

Home prices stable in 2016 and 2017 – The Owl

According to CMHC's forecast, homeowners in Alberta’s two largest cities face little risk of a major housing price collapse.....more...

May 20, 2016

Retail sales dip, but showing signs of stabilizing – The Owl

“And in fact, spending per person in Alberta is still well above the national average, even if total sales are at a three-year low.”.....more...

May 19, 2016

Calgary housing starts could decline by more than a third in 2016: CMHC – Calgary Herald

We have to remember that the four years leading up to the recession were “amazing” years for Calgary home builders, so looking at year-over-year comparisons can be misleading. If you look over time, it’s still a robust market.....more...

May 18, 2016

Prairie Housing Starts to Decline in 2016, and Rise in 2017 - CMHC

Current market conditions are in favour of the Alberta buyer.....more...

Fort McMurray fire won't devastate economy, says new report – CBC News

“Despite the Fort McMurray wildfire causing widespread devastation and shutting down about half of all oilsands production, a new report suggests the impact to the provincial and national economy will be minimal.”....more...

House prices in Calgary dip 3.5% as national average surges upward – CBC News

Hayden says despite the downturn, people are still buying and selling homes in the city. "Calgary's still a good market. It's not as bad as it was the last time oil took a big crash."....more...

Laneway housing pilot project for seniors touted by Calgary councillor – CBC News

A new tiny, tech-savvy kind of seniors' housing could be coming to Calgary.....more...

Nenshi 'dumbfounded' over debate to tweak Calgary's secondary suite bylaw – Calgary Herald

“Calgary’s elected officials approved “two very small, technical changes” to the city’s land-use bylaws to allow for larger secondary suites in basements and to ease an existing parcel size restriction in districts that already allow the dwellings.”....more...

May 13, 2016

Alberta building industry lends a hand to Fort McMurray – YP Next Home

“When the Fort McMurray and surrounding community was left reeling from the recent wildfire disaster, it wasn’t just Alberta communities, governments or the Canadian Red Cross that pitched in to help out. The home building industry in the province immediately stepped up to lend a helping hand.”....more...

CMHC continues to reduce its exposure to the housing market – Financial Post

"CMHC has reduced taxpayer exposure in its portfolio, but the cost of restrictive mortgage insurance regulations is reduced access to financing and decreasing affordability, especially for first-time buyers. Pushing buyers to alternative and private lenders may increase risks to the housing finance system. CHBA will continue to advocate for the most appropriate role of federal policies on mortgage insurance in regulating housing markets, the need to mitigate consequences of lending restrictions for first-time buyers, and ensure access to housing for all Canadians."....more...

Building permits, March 2016 - Statistics Canada

The value of residential permits rose 4.8% to $4.4 billion in March, a second consecutive monthly increase. Values for multi-family rose 12.1% to $2.0 billion, while single-family edged down 0.5% to $2.4 billion, following a 10.0% increase in February.....more...

May 12, 2016

Economists downgrading their outlooks for Canada’s economy as Alberta fires burn – Financial Post

Both economic growth and housing starts are likely to return, and potentially to spike once the challenging situation on the ground has been addressed and reconstruction plans launched in Fort McMurray.....more...

May 11, 2016

Housing experts urge Fort McMurray to co-ordinate, plan carefully for rebuild – Calgary Herald

“Fort McMurray will enter uncharted territory when it starts reconstructing houses and businesses destroyed by this month’s wildfire, the head of Alberta’s main organization for home builders says.” “Construction companies, insurance firms, government and property owners must co-ordinate their activities to deal with this catastrophe, says Jim Rivait, CEO, CHBA - Alberta....more...

Brookfield Place surpasses The Bow as Calgary's tallest building – Calgary Sun

“Brookfield Place has officially surpassed the Bow in height, earning the title of western Canada's tallest building.”....more...

Canadian Housing Starts Trend Stable in April - Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

"As CHBA has observed in the past, starts, especially multi-family, can be volatile month-to-month. Growth in starts for the Atlantic provinces, Prairies and British Columbia are a testament to the strong fundamentals underlying housing markets."...more...

May 9, 2016

Canadian Housing Starts Trend Stable in April – CMHC

April housing start data for Canada is now available. ....more...

The mounting economic toll as Fort McMurray ravaged – The Globe and Mail

Analysts are slashing their projections for Canada’s near-term economic growth in the wake of Fort McMurray’s devastation, though raising them for later in the year as the city rebuilds.....more...

Albi wins top national awards for housing, marketing excellence – Calgary Herald

Albi Luxury by Brookfield Residential has captured the two biggest awards in a national housing industry competition.....more...

May 2, 2016

Brookfield humbled with Symons Gate win – Calgary Sun

“We’ve been building in this great city for the last 58 years and are proud to be part of making what many Calgarians call the best places to call home.”....more...

Report shows more homes on the market than last year – Calgary Sun

“While continued uncertainty in the oil industry has made some buyers hesitant, there is interest in the market and open houses are busy.”....more...

Jayman Modus proud of Ebony’s phenomenal win – Calgary Sun

"The SAM Awards brand carries recognition as a mark of excellence in the eyes of the industry and public," says Serr. "Buying a home is a huge investment and understanding how this award is earned is an affirmation to our customers that they are indeed making the best home-buying decision."....more...

Canadian housing market resilient, says CMHC leader – Calgary Herald

Homes writer Josh Skapin sat down with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. president and CEO Evan Siddall and regional economist Lai Sing Louie to talk about recent activity in the housing market.....more...

5 things to know about real estate in northwest Calgary – Calgary Herald

“Northwest Calgary had more spec inventory and some of the city’s strongest numbers for multi-family housing under construction over the first quarter of 2016.”....more...

April 28, 2016

Doing it right - CREB Now

"Corporate social responsibility plays into homebuilders’ decisions to go green."...more...

Employee earnings lower than a year ago - The Owl

"Even as average earnings fall, employees in this province are still leading the pack with the highest earnings among all provinces."....more...

April 27, 2016

New homes to come with car charging stations – The Weather Network

This is interesting, the Quebec government plans to mandate the installation of 240-volt electric car charging stations in all new homes built in the province.....more...

Housing market 'not waiting' for millennials, BMO warns buyers - BNN

“Almost all millennials, those between the ages 19 and 35, agree there is value in home ownership. But the majority doesn’t feel pressured to buy a home anytime soon and sees it as an investment rather than a goal or milestone.”....more...

Builders expect busy year to continue – CREB Now

“Calgary’s residential development sector continues to move dirt, lay down infrastructure and create lots as it responds to current consumer interest and prepares for the inevitable economic turnaround.”....more...

The Last of the Houses in Downtown Calgary - Avenue

“Calgary’s downtown core has a reputation for high rises and blue-windowed mega buildings, but there are still a handful of simple house structures remaining.”....more...

New Study Examines Impact of Parental Money on Millennial Homebuying - Curbed

“How much does parental support help aspiring young homeowners? The probability of becoming a homeowner jumps 23 percent among adult children who receive a money transfer from their parent.”....more...

Calgary and Edmonton seeking new housing rules for city owned land – iNews 880 AM

“In a few years, you could see housing in places that until now you’d never imagine the possibility.”....more...

April 25, 2016

How much each province receives under new federal infrastructure funding - The Province

CHBA has been an active advocate of increased federal investment in municipal infrastructure and public transit. Apart from contributing to better quality communities, this assistance can reduce pressures on municipalities to increase development taxes to fund capital costs. In addition, it is a welcome sign that potential work on new projects is to be given added incentives to get underway, a move that could increase their contribution to affordability. Finally, consideration of including non-government investors is something CHBA has long advocated. This is a move away from taxing new home buyers and renters, and enhances the relationship between benefits received and user fees charged.....more...

Housing prospects for millennials in Canadian markets – Mortgage Broker News

“Currently, around 76 per cent of renting individuals aged 18 to 34 are expecting to buy their own homes within the next 5 years.”....more...

Seeing opportunity in Alberta’s oil slump – The Globe and Mail

“First, the fall in Calgary is hardly hard enough to qualify as a crash, and second, people like Ms. Adham may find now is a good time to buy.” – Todd Hirsch....more...

House affordability improving in some parts of Canada, National Bank says – CBC News

Housing affordability in Calgary is improving. “The percentage of income needed for a monthly payment is now at a record low.”....more...

Prof brings a passion for people to the design of socially inclusive cities – University of Calgary

'It is important to create designs with the people, by the people and for the people'....more...

Outstanding work recognized at the SAM Awards - Calgary Sun

“The 2015 SAM Awards gala, held on April 16, produced some surprises, some repeat winners and some first-time winners.”....more...

Calgary renos could cost less in downturn, industry insiders say – CBC News

Thinking of renovating your home? Now is a great time.”....more...

Ken King on what’s next with CalgaryNEXT – Calgary Sun

“A city report said the CalgaryNEXT plan just won’t work for them. Instead, city brass said King and the owners could respond to the city’s findings and hoped they would work with the city on details of a Plan B.”....more...

April 22, 2016

Millennials: Buying A Home ASAP Is Worth It In The Long Run - Huffington Post

Three tips for millennials planning on buying their first home....more...

Undeterred by Calgary’s distressed condo market - Business Vancouver

Vancouver-based Qualex-Landmark bullish on oil town despite energy downturn....more...

Calgary looks to incentivize higher-density development - The Globe and Mail

"Addressing [sprawl] has been a priority for the municipal government for the past seven years and, in 2016, it hopes to introduce incentives for developers to help the city grow upwards, not out."....more...

April 21, 2016

Editorial: Overheating down-under, too - Globe and Mail

Encouraged by the urging of the International Housing Association, of which CHBA CEO Kevin Lee is Chair, the IMF has made significant progress in expanding its housing market evaluation tools - and therefore recommendations. This is evidenced by a recent report on factors underlying Australian housing prices. CHBA looks forward to seeing these tools applied in preparing the next report for Canada.....more...

Investment in new housing construction, February 2016 - Statistics Canada

Spending on new housing construction totalled $3.7 billion in February, up 5.4% from the same month a year earlier. Investment in apartment-condominiums increased 24.8% to $1.4 billion and row houses rose 8.2% to $373 million. Investment in single-detached declined 4.3%, to $1.8 billion, while semi-detached declined 18.1% to $160 million.....more...

April 20, 2016

Loonie surges, but rally could pose risk to non-energy exports - The Globe and Mail

"The Canadian dollar broke through the 79-cent (U.S.) mark on Tuesday for the first time since last July, capping off a three-month rally that ranks as among the strongest on record."....more...

April 18, 2016

Calgary area's top builders receive awards tonight – Calgary Herald

“The annual competition highlights the best in single-family and multi-family home building, community development, renovation, sales and marketing.”....more...

Broadview Homes named Calgary's Builder of the Year – Calgary Sun

“The awards are proof that our members have the drive and ability to create outstanding homes, renovations, marketing collateral and so much more, even in the face of economic adversity,” said Wenzel. “The industry consistently puts out its best each year and as usual the competition at this year’s SAM Awards was extremely close.”....more...

No time like the present to look for a new home – Calgary Sun

“The bottom line is, if you are on good grounds financially and are considering a new home, no time is better to start looking than now.“....more...

Northeast Calgary single-family starts up over last year – Calgary Herald

“The only quadrant in Calgary to record a higher number of starts over the first three months of 2016 compared to the same period last year was northeast Calgary. Starts rose 26 per cent to 79 from 58, says CMHC.”....more...

United States still our best customer by far – The OWL

“The US absorbs more than half of Alberta’s exports for most – but not all – product categories.”....more...

Evolution of housing in Canada, 1957 to 2014 – Statistics Canada

This report shows how the home building industry has adapted nimbly to demographic and urbanization trends - as well as changes to regional land-use regulations. CHBA research estimates a 300,000 unit shortfall in the number of needed family-friendly homes across the country over the next ten years.....more...

April 15, 2016

NDP hope $8.5B infrastructure injection will aid economy - Calgary Sun

Alberta’s NDP government intends to spend nearly $8.5 billion this year to build and modernize key public infrastructure in hopes of salvaging the province’s slumping economy.....more...

April 14, 2016

Marketplace Events Buys Calgary Homexpo, Plans 6 more Launches - TSNN

"We know the show and our members will be in good hands with Marketplace Events, a top producer, whose standards of excellence mirror our own. The multi-day event served our members well, however, those companies which took advantage of the marketing opportunities Homexpo provided will benefit further from working with North America's largest home show producer. It is the primary focus of their business." - Donna Moore.....more...

Vehicle sales shift from neutral to first in February – The OWL

This morning’s vehicle sales report is some more positive economic news for our province.....more...

RioCan pushes ahead with Calgary project despite oil slump – The Globe and Mail

“RioCan Real Estate Investment Trust, Canada’s largest retail landlord, is starting construction this week on a project that will add 770,000 square feet of shopping and residential space in downtown Calgary, despite an oil crash that’s cut jobs and forced other companies to slow development.”....more...

April 13, 2016

Tax data shows first-time buyers such as millennials are jumping into Alberta housing again – Financial Post

“Millennials appear to be buying into the Canadian housing market with new zeal and the beleaguered Calgary and Edmonton markets are prime beneficiaries of a boost in first-time buyer purchases, new tax data shows.”....more...

BoC maintains overnight rate target at 1/2 per cent - Bank of Canada

The Bank of Canada today announced that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 1/2%. The Bank Rate is correspondingly 3/4% and the deposit rate is 1/4%.....more...

April 12, 2016

More millennials plan to purchase a home - Advisor.ca

Millennials are showing a marked increase in intent to buy a home, with 43% saying they’re considering purchasing in the next two years, up from 34% in 2015.....more...

April 11, 2016

Industry gears up for prestigious SAM Awards - Calgary Sun

"The awards are proof that our members have the drive and ability to create outstanding homes, renovations, marketing collateral and so much more, even in the face of economic adversity,"....more...

Markets await central bank’s upgraded economic forecast - The Globe and Mail

“For the time being, the bank looks content to hold its key rate steady at 0.5 per cent, where it has been since last July.”....more...

Pockets of MLS sales growth found throughout Calgary - Calgary Sun

Sales are up in the northwest and eastside of Calgary.....more...

Built Green sees Calgary builders remain committed to sustainable building - Calgary Herald

“We’re impressed with the level of commitment and leadership of builders in the residential building sector around sustainability.”....more...

Educating elected officials about housing - Ottawa Sun

Every year CHBA educates newly elected MPs about the housing industry and the issues and opportunities we face.....more...

Experts eye millennials’ home-buying habits – Calgary Sun

“Saving for a downpayment takes longer for the millennials than it did for baby boomers, but Canadians love their homes and it is more than likely the millennials will follow the boomers into homeownership.”....more...

April 8, 2016

First Bank of Canada rate hike draws closer on fiscal stimulus: Reuters poll – Reuters Canada

“Economists unanimously expect the central bank to keep rates at 0.5 percent at its meeting on April 13, but think it will likely revise its economic forecasts higher for this year.”....more...

Employment surges higher in March – The OWL

“With the gain in employment, the province’s unemployment rate plunged from 7.9 per cent in February down to 7.1 per cent in March—matching the national average for the month.”....more...

April 7, 2016

Latest CMHC Report Brings Foreign Ownership Into Sharper Focus - Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Based on data already in hand, foreign ownership is not the sole (nor most significant) issue when it comes to affordability.....more...

Building permits, February 2016 - Statistics Canada

The value of residential permits increased 5.0% to $4.2 billion in February, following a 12.7% decrease the previous month. Value of single-family permits increased 9.6% to $2.4 billion in February, ending a string of six consecutive monthly declines. Value of multi-family edged down 0.6% to $1.8 billion in February, a second consecutive monthly decline.....more...

Trudeau says Ottawa will be partners with municipalities on infrastructure - National Newswatch

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said it is up to towns and provinces to determine their priorities. Commentary: CHBA successfully advocated for additional infrastructure funding and that the federal share be increased to 50 percent to help relieve the development tax burden levied on buyers of new homes. CHBA will now continue to advocate to governments at all levels that infrastructure investment priorities should support housing affordability and choice as a key outcome.....more...

April 6, 2016

Exports matter to Alberta – The OWL

“While we can’t do much if anything about global prices, there is a great deal we can do to stay competitive in the global export game. We have to be constantly looking for ways to stay ahead of our competitors in terms of innovation, infrastructure (pipelines anyone?), productivity and human capital.”....more...

April 5, 2016

SAM Awards gala honours industry’s best – Calgary Sun

"It's a real honour to win, especially when you look around and see the quality of builders in the room, you realize it is really something special."....more...

'A home for every Albertan' requires focus on affordability – Calgary Herald

Affordability is the biggest target for CHBA – Alberta’s new president.....more...

March 31, 2016

[PDF] Long-term Household Growth Projections [National and Provincial] 2015 Update – Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

The echo generation, aged 23 to 43 in 2015 and Canada’s largest generation, is expected to continue to be the largest source of household formation until 2021.....more...

Down payments keep millennials on other side of home ownership fence - Globe and Mail

In 1974, a typical 25- to 34-year-old had to work for 5 years to put a 20% down payment on an average home in Canada. Now it’s 12 years. In the Greater Toronto Area, it’s 15 years; in British Columbia it’s 16 years; in Vancouver and area it’s a staggering 23 years. Home ownership among Canadians under age 44 has fallen in the past four decades.....more...

April 1, 2016

Little house on the alley – CREB Now

“Many Calgarians have probably never heard of a laneway house, let alone seen one in their neighbourhood. But they soon will as the City of Calgary and other industry partners consider innovative ways to increase density in centrally located neighbourhoods, as well as mitigate rising housing costs.”....more...

VIDEO: Bay Street sees brighter outlook for Canada after 'rip-roaring' GDP – Business News Network

“Canada’s economy grew by a much larger-than-expected 0.6 per cent in January, Statistics Canada data indicated on Thursday, reducing the odds that the Bank of Canada will need to cut interest rates further this year and prompting economists to revisit their forecasts.”....more...

March 31, 2016

Canada's GDP report crushed estimates, and its dollar is near an 8-month high - Business Insider

Canada saw its strongest monthly gain in three years as January's real GDP rose 0.6% from December. January was the fourth consecutive month of growth, and the longest stretch of gains since oil prices started to fall. The Canadian dollar appreciated 0.6% against the US dollar, nearing eight-month highs.....more...

Gross domestic product by industry, January 2016 - Statistics Canada

This is good news not only for the economy in general, but for housing specifically – gains in other sectors will reduce the scepticism on housing as “overperforming” and in need of being cooled down. As CHBA has iterated before, gains in employment and wages are the best way to improve housing affordability.....more...

Economy to see greater benefits of a low loonie over time, Morneau says as he courts U.S., Europe investors - Financial Post

The Bank of Canada believes that the weakness in commodity prices will be offset by growth in other sectors (as seen above) and demand for exports.....more...

March 30, 2016

Top things to know before hiring a builder – CTV News Vancouver

In addition to checking out a builder’s license, check how long they’ve been in business and ask about their background and try to verify their credentials. You should also follow-up with references and ask whether they allow onsite inspections of the project.....more...

Are millennials still interested in buying homes? – Real Estate News Exchange

“Millennials still want to buy, but what, when and where they buy has changed dramatically, and builders and developers will need to follow those trends closely to ensure they’re planning the successful development projects of the future.”....more...

March 29, 2016

Is Alberta more innovative? – The OWL

New research from Statistics Canada suggests that Alberta businesses are ahead of the curve when it comes to implementing new technologies.....more...

Spring 2016 edition of the Market Manuscript – Fortress Real Developments

“People continued to move to [Alberta] last year, suggesting there are still meaningful opportunities.”....more...

Housing plans lauded in federal budget – Calgary Sun

“Improving the energy and water use efficiency of Canada's stock of social housing means long-term benefits for the environment, society, social housing agencies and residents, said Jane Morgan, CHBA president.” "We look forward to working with the government and other stakeholders to ensure that the housing needs of all Canadians are met, including renters, owners, first-time buyers and those in need of assistance," he said. "CHBA will continue to play an active role in these consultations on behalf of the industry and new home buyers."....more...

A family home to fit all generations – Calgary Herald

Builders are creating homes that reflect the diverse needs of Calgarians.....more...

Calgary's apartment building starts up in February – Calgary Herald

“Apartment-style condos in the city core accounted for 45 per cent all new multi-family construction in the Calgary area last month”.....more...

Member Shout Out! – Genesis Builders Group

The Genesis Builders Group has donated more than $100,000 to schools and charities in the Calgary area.....more...

March 23, 2016

Home Builders Welcome Public Transit, Infrastructure and Housing Investment in Federal Budget

CHBA has released a response to the 2016 Federal Budget, which included $11.9 billion over five years for modern and reliable public transit, water and wastewater systems, affordable housing, and in retrofits and repairs to protect existing projects from the effects of climate change.....more...

Kevin Lee Elected as Chairman of the International Housing Association – Real Estate Rama

“During my tenure as chairman, I look forward to continuing to help IHA and its members take action on priority issues facing the housing and the home building industry across the world,” said Lee.....more...

The changing landscape of Canadian metropolitan areas, 1971 to 2011 – Statistics Canada

Canada's CMAs have more than doubled in land size from 1971 to 2011. From 2001 to 2011, population density also increased, especially in Toronto (+14%), Vancouver (+12%), Calgary (+12%), Barrie (+19%), Oshawa (+13%) and Edmonton (+16%).....more...

City hotels struggle while Alberta resorts show muscle – The OWL

“Alberta’s resorts can thank a lower loonie for a successful 2015. Cheaper international travel has brought more foreign visitors to our parks.”....more...

New group touts benefits of transit projects in Calgary – Metro News Calgary

Jennifer Burgess wants to change the tone of the conversation on transit in Calgary.....more...

March 22, 2016

Inside Trudeau’s budget: Read the highlights - The Globe and Mail

The government pledges $2.3-billion in social infrastructure over the next two years. Of that money, provinces and territories will receive $2.2-billion, including $700-million for affordable housing initiatives, with another $739-million dedicated to First Nations housing.....more...

Councillors to look at policy for urban development near railways – Calgary Herald

“Growing cities need smart development Up, In and Out. It’s encouraging to see cities having open, evidence-based dialogue on long-term development prospects.” – CHBA National....more...

Federal budget 2016: 5 things to watch for today – CBC News

The budget, which will be tabled today, is expected to address a wide array of Liberal promises and priorities, from increased infrastructure spending to affordable housing to greening the economy.....more...

What Calgary wants from the federal budget – CBC News

“Trudeau's economic advisory council, told the Canadian Press he wouldn't be surprised to see money transfers for infrastructure sped up for areas with weak economies, including Alberta.”....more...

Investment in new housing construction, January 2016 - Statistics Canada

Nationally investment in residential increased 3.9% year over year to $3.7 billion in January. In Alberta, spending decreased in all dwelling types except apartment and apartment-condominium buildings, which rose 22.5% to $195 million.....more...

Vehicle sales fall considerably, yet Albertans still buying the most – The OWL

“Despite the considerable drop in sales here in Alberta, our province has the highest vehicle purchase rate in the country (in per capita terms). As of January, Albertans purchased about 350 new vehicles per 100,000 people. British Columbia, for example, purchased about 300 new cars per capita while Ontario bought around 325.”....more...

March 21, 2016

Homebuilders holding on in slowing Calgary economy – Metro News

“It’s a great time to start learning the business,” said Jabusch.....more...

Calgary finalists in the running for national housing awards – Calgary Sun

Companies from the Calgary and area residential construction industry received 25 nominations for the National Awards for Housing Excellence, presented by the Canadian Home Builders’ Association (CHBA).....more...

February's inflation breakdown – The OWL

“Today’s Owl takes a closer look at inflation and breaks down what goods or services have become more expensive from a year previous and which ones have become cheaper.”....more...

Broadview receives most finalist spots for single-family home awards at SAMs – Calgary Herald

“Broadview Homes and Jayman Built lead this year’s list of contenders for single-family home categories at the Calgary Region SAM Awards.”....more...

Broadview receives most finalist spots for single-family home awards at SAMs – Calgary Herald

A review of the multi-family builders named multiple SAM Awards finalists.....more...

Tiny houses designed for Saskatchewan winters – CBC News

It's not your average home — it's actually about one-tenth the size, and with the tiny space comes a tiny price. Designed for Saskatchewan (or perhaps Albertan) winters.....more...

Highland Park residents weigh in on plans to transform former golf course

“With the course closed and lands sold years ago, Highland Park residents say they’ve come to terms with the reality that the site will ultimately be redeveloped with housing.”....more...

Are millennials one of the wealthiest generations? Government says yes, prof says no – The UBYSSEY

Whatever the department of finance’s results though, it is clear that the issue is not as simple as one generation being wealthier than another.....more...

March 18, 2016

Alberta cities still among fastest-growing centres in Canada - CREB Now

“Calgary continued to be one of Canada’s fastest-growing cities in 2015.”....more...

The suburbs and the sound of crickets - RENX

“For those of us in the development industry, there are two opportunities present. The influx of Boomers to high-density [multi-family housing] (MFH) is one.”....more...

Canada’s largest net-zero housing demo ends – REMI Network

“A net-zero energy home loves you back,” said Kevin Lee, chief executive officer of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association (CHBA). “It shelters you from rising utility costs, it delivers exceptional comfort, it works better, and it lasts.”....more...

Alberta shoppers still sitting on their wallets – The Owl

Retail sales in Alberta are down 3.6 per cent over the last complete 12 months, compared to the previous 12 months. “But given the severity of the economic situation and the plunge in other measures of consumer sentiment the fact that sales are down by only this amount is a bit surprising. Indeed, it could even be considered positive news.”....more...

March 17, 2016

Southwest BRT construction hinges on gas line questions, says Calgary councillor – CBC News

A city councillor says the southwest transitway cannot go ahead until ATCO reveals what it wants to do with a high-pressure gas line.....more...

CMHC pushes to get banks to shoulder more mortgage market risk - CBC News

"This is a fundamental way in which we contribute to Canada's financial stability. In fact, our role now in Alberta is to support continuous access for Albertans to the housing market, even if private insurers choose to pull back."....more...

Canada's population estimates, fourth quarter 2015 - Statistics Canada

Canada's population was estimated at 36,048,500 on January 1, 2016, up 62,800 from October 1, 2015 (0.17%).....more...

Infrastructure promises and growing deficit loom large as federal budget nears - Business in Vancouver

CHBA National Commentary: Much of CHBA’s Pre-Budget Submission is focused on the best way government can use the money promised in the election, as opposed to asking for significant additional spending. Investments in infrastructure, transit, jobs, social housing and climate change can be targeted to address specific needs related to housing affordability, skills shortages and residential energy efficiency.....more...

BMO slams housing market ‘scaremongers’ - Globe and Mail

“Hey, forecasting is hard,” said Bank of Montreal’s chief economist, Douglas Porter. “But let’s not give a pass to some of these scaremongers who have been dead wrong (e.g. 25-per-cent decline? Try 35-per-cent rise).” CHBA National Commentary: CHBA has consistently countered alarmist headlines with its own research and analysis. Well-respected economists are doing the same, as in this case.....more...

March 16, 2016

Canadian Real Estate Association raises outlook for home sales in 2016 – Macleans

It’s impossible to paint Canada’s housing market with one broad brush. There are three very separate markets happening that all need to be taken into account when looking at the Canadian housing market as a whole.....more...

When it comes to Canada’s housing market, ignorance is not bliss – Globe and Mail

“There’s nothing improper about foreign investors owning land in Canada. But CMHC and other agencies need a better picture of what’s happening in the real-estate market.”....more...

Braid: NDP tax shift shows compromise behind partisan uproar – Calgary Herald

“…a strong hint the tax will drop from three per cent to two per cent on businesses that earn below $500,000 net income.”....more...

Wild, wild west – Creb Now

On the redevelopment of West Downtown: “The 2015 Downtown West survey showed that, for residents, the top priorities for future development are restaurants and retail, residential retail and walkable, pedestrian-friendly areas with parks and other green spaces.”....more...

Tips on Buying a New Construction Home in the Calgary Area – Broadview Homes Blog

A great way to obtain your dream home is buying a new construction home, so you can have your say on many of the specifications, features and options that will be included. Here are five things you should do when buying a new construction home.....more...

March 15, 2016

Business associations ask province to table crippling policies - CTV News

Fifteen business associations, including our provincial branch CHBA - Alberta, and employer groups collectively wrote an open letter to Premier Notley in an attempt to persuade the provincial government to agree to a moratorium on policies that hurt businesses.....more...

Alberta has the youngest population, but it’s aging - The Owl

"Alberta is Canada’s youngest province with a median age of 36.2 years—four years younger than the national median age of 40.5 years. Alberta has a youngish population compared to the other provinces but it is still older than the global median of 30 years."....more...

Forcing banks to shoulder more mortgage risk still under consideration - Global News

The option of requiring lenders to pay a deductible on mortgage insurance claims is still on a table. CMHC is working with a number of government entities to examine ways of better distributing risk across the financial system. Commentary: As always, CHBA urges caution on any measure that could increase the barriers to homeownership. At the same time, lenders should make reasonable efforts to work with borrowers in temporary financial difficulty so they can stay in their homes – and a deductible would promote this approach. More published data on how lenders are currently managing default risks would support evidence-based decision-making in this area....more...

Feds make 90 building code changes to NECB to boost energy efficiency - Canadian Manufacturing

Under regulations, new builds to be 27% more efficient than in 1997. Commentary: The National Energy Code for Buildings is intended for larger Part 3 buildings – typically commercial -- although Housing and Small Buildings can sometimes use this code as an alternative to the energy requirements of Part 9. In general, significant changes to residential buildings are not expected other than more efficient lighting (in common areas) and low-flow fixtures (which is current practice in residential).....more...

New Mortgage Rules Introduced By Liberals Driving Up Housing Market: National Bank - Huffington Post Canada

Economists predicted that the rules would pull forward mortgage applications, but the effect will persist because those who locked in a mortgage before February 15 have until July 1 to buy a home. Commentary: Every new regulatory measure affecting mortgage markets typically takes several quarters before its full effects are clear. It is too soon to assess overall impacts of changes announced in December of 2015.....more...

Pain in the wallet: Canada’s wage growth has been sick for years - Globe and Mail

Commentary: CHBA has long noted that stagnant wages are a significant contributor to diminished affordability. The health of housing markets will ultimately depend on long-term income growth, based on renewed growth of both traditional sectors and emerging industries.....more...

March 14, 2016

And the finalists for the Calgary area housing awards are… - Calgary Herald

Finalists have been unveiled for a competition recognizing the best performances from the Calgary area’s residential industry last year.....more...

Builders' and developers' associations vote to join forces - Calgary Herald

The amalgamation has been a long-term conversation between the housing and land development groups, but the formal process has been in the works for about two years, Jabusch says. “One of the reasons is that we’re just seeing a real consolidation in our industry,” says Jabusch....more...

The amalgamation is a done deal - Calgary Sun

"First and foremost, having a stronger voice and a clear advocacy strategy for the organization to deal with the big issues like affordability that can be handled hopefully in a more informed and far-reaching way and therefore be a direct benefit to home buyers," says Donna Moore.....more...

Finance Committee Tables Its Pre-Budget Consultations Report in Advance of the 2016 Budget - House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance

The Committee has made a number of recommendations that have the potential to have a positive impact on the economy, including: • Establishing a national housing strategy that includes measures to support first-time homebuyers. • Committing to spending on critical infrastructure. • Ensuring that municipal infrastructure funding is long term, predictable, sustainable and dedicated. • Work with the provinces/territories and municipalities to develop and implement a national transit strategy, including predictable, sustainable and long-term funding. • Promoting the development of more labour market information, expanding pre-apprenticeship training programs and establishing a tax measure to encourage labour mobility. Commentary: CHBA CEO Kevin Lee appeared before the Finance Committee earlier this year. The CHBA reiterated its Budget recommendations during last week’s Forum for Growth. The Budget will be released next Tuesday, March 22.....more...

March 11, 2016

Many people are still choosing Calgary - Calgary Economic Development

"people are still choosing to come to Calgary to make a living and a life."....more...

Parliamentary Secretary Rudd Celebrates the Success of the Net-Zero Energy Housing Demonstration Project - Natural Resources Canada

As of spring 2016, a total of 26 energy-efficient homes and condominium units will have been built in Calgary, Guelph, Ottawa, Laval and Halifax. The demonstration project shows the viability and cost-effectiveness of net-zero energy housing technologies, in addition to the significant energy reduction and savings that this type of housing can generate for home owners.....more...

Study Reveals the Housing Preferences of the Boomer Generation - National Association of Home Builders

The majority of all buyers (65%), and boomers in particular (63%), would like to buy a single-family detached home. Few buyers (8%) or boomers (7%) prefer a central city location. About two-thirds prefer a home in the suburbs (close-in or outlying) and just over a quarter prefer a rural area.....more...

March 9, 2016

Bank of Canada stays course on key interest rate - CTV News

The Bank of Canada is sticking with its key interest rate as it waits to assess economy-boosting measures expected in the upcoming federal budget.....more...

Construction amalgamation in Calgary - iNews 880 AM

Two major organizations in Calgary’s development world are merging....more...

March 8, 2016

Building permits pull back to start the year - The Owl

"Regardless of the dip in overall permits recently, the situation is better described as soft rather than catastrophic. There could still be more pull-back in building permits in the coming months, but given the economic climate in the province, an eight per cent dip in activity is actually better than what many would have expected."...more...

What’s in store for the real estate market this spring? - YP Next Home

For prospective home buyers opportunity knocks in Calgary....more...

March 7, 2016

CMHC revs up hunt for foreign flows into torrid housing market - The Globe and Mail

CMHC looking for new methods to track foreign ownership in the country’s soaring real estate markets....more...

Housing Industry Success in Mitigating Climate Change - Ottawa Sun

"Today’s new home buyers benefit from the tremendous energy performance improvement achieved by Canada’s home building industry".....more...

Average price of resale single-family homes declines in Calgary - Calgary Herald

“A solid selling strategy can really make the difference in this market.”- CREB president Cliff Stevenson.....more...

Life in Canada’s Communities: Reactions to the Federal Government’s Agenda - Abacus Data

There is broad support for federal investment in infrastructure, clean technology, public transit, and affordable housing. There is also broad agreement with the idea that municipalities should have more say in the choices of what infrastructure to prioritize. Commentary: CHBA’s Pre-Budget recommendations relating to federal funding of municipal infrastructure and transit contribute to achieving all of the above policy goals. However, there are many implementation challenges to be overcome in turning general public support into a reality in their own neighbourhoods......more...

March 4, 2016

Chestermere drops acrimonious annexation bid - Calgary Herald

Chestermere council decided on Wednesday to end the six-year bid after a temporary freeze was slapped on Rocky View County development in the Conrich area that it’s opposed, said Mayor Patricia Matthews.....more...

Calgary's great neighbourhoods created by transit-oriented development, just look at the past - CBC News

History shows that transit-oriented developments create sustainable growth and vibrancy for citizens. At CHBA - Calgary Region we believe a city must grow not only out, but in and up.....more...

March 3, 2016

Suburbs' fabric shifts as jobs move away from the downtown core - CBC News

“... in reality, the 'burbs are home to tens of thousands of businesses that employ one third of all Calgarians.” – Richard White The City of Calgary's 2013 Employment Areas Growth report (a new one is due this year) shows that 78 per cent of total job growth in Calgary between 2006 to 2011 has been in the suburbs.....more...

Residential construction investment, fourth quarter 2015 - Statistics Canada

In Alberta, spending on residential construction fell 9.9% to $4.4 billion in the fourth quarter compared with the same quarter in 2014. Lower spending in every component contributed to the decline, except apartment and apartment-condominium buildings, where construction spending increased 29.6% to $735 million.....more...

Prime Minister announces significant new investments in climate resilience

Prime Minister announced $75 million in new funding to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) to help local governments reduce emissions and build climate resiliency at the municipal-level. The Government of Canada will also invest $50 million to improve climate resilience in building and infrastructures codes across Canada. CHBA Commentary: CHBA will be actively advocating for sound, cost-effective measures that complement innovation processes, and fully take into account housing affordability and choice for consumers. Code needs to focus on building better houses for the same price or less.....more...

This is what millennials have been reduced to, and it’s just gross - The Globe and Mail

Millennials are not getting the kind of full-time work with benefits that their parents built careers on, and politicians seem oblivious to the risk of a creeping marginalization of the young. CHBA Commentary: CHBA emphasizes that stalled income growth is a significant factor in the inability of young Canadians to get into homeownership, as well as the rise in household debt. Broader economic action to create jobs and support income growth -- coupled with housing access measures proposed by CHBA -- is the best longer-term solution to increasing affordability and building Millennial equity as well as reducing their debts.....more...

Continued recession for Edmonton and Calgary this year - BOE Report

Calgary’s economy is forecast to decline by 1.2 per cent in 2016, on the heels of a 2.4 per cent contraction in 2015. “The dramatic decline in oil prices continues to weigh on both cities’ economies, and weak activity in the energy industry is spreading to other sectors,” said Alan Arcand, Associate Director, Centre for Municipal Studies, The Conference Board of Canada. “Two of the hardest hit industries last year—manufacturing and construction—will continue to struggle this year, while conditions in the services sector will deteriorate.”....more...

Justin Trudeau’s message to world: Let government spending do the work - Financial Post

“It’s to me even more of a reason why we need to be investing intelligently in infrastructure, in money in the pockets of the middle class, to grow the economy,” (Prime Minister Justin) Trudeau said of the fiscal situation he inherited after his majority win in the Oct. 19 election.....more...

A move toward three bedrooms and two baths - Market Place

But while we often think of millennials as a generation living in gentrifying neighborhoods in urban centers, 49 percent of millennial homebuyers are in fact moving to the suburbs, according to the NAR. They are moving out of the city and away from the urban living culture with which they are closely associated. Millennial suburban home buyers want walkability, convenient access to public transportation, good schools within a short distance, "a great education ... an organic market down the street ... They really do want to bring the best of urban living to the suburbs" - Alison Bernstein, founder of Suburban Jungle Realty....more...

How the West was done: Plummeting oil prices and political change conspire to stall Canada’s growth engine - Financial Post

Meanwhile, Canada’s reputation as a destination for energy investment keeps sinking, while its energy competitors, from Saudi Arabia to the United States, are cranking up exports of their still dirty oil.....more...

March 2, 2016

Study: Canadians' perceptions of neighbourhood disorder, 2014 - Statistics Canada

Despite a growing population, Canadians still feel safe in their neighbourhoods, especially in areas outside the city core – StatsCan....more...

Alberta government launches transit strategy consultations - Calgary Herald

Albertans can provide their input on funding criteria for city transit options and rural bus service needs. The province has created an online public survey for Albertans to give their feedback until April 29.....more...

Babin: This map shows why Calgary's older suburbs may be headed for some big problems - Calgary Herald

Asks the journalist: What do you think? Should we start paying more attention to the way those “doughnut” communities are evolving? If you live in those communities, is there something you would like to see to help keep the neighbourhoods vital? Should the city just keep its hands off?.....more...

Calgary home sellers starting to lower asking prices as sales stall in worst downturn in years - Financial Post

The slow market is leading sellers to lower prices but not enough to close the gap for more transactions.....more...

Brad Wall vows to reject carbon tax he says will cost Saskatchewan $1 billion a year - Financial Post

Premier Brad Wall won’t sign on to carbon tax. He said a tax of $15 per tonne of carbon would cost Saskatchewan’s economy $500 million a year – and $500 per family. At $40 a tonne, it would cost $1.3 billion annually.....more...

March 1, 2016

Housing stats show increase in average Calgary home price - Calgary Herald

CREB home sales are down – no surprise – but average is up, likely skewed by strong luxury sales last month.....more...

As detached home prices soar, first-time buyers turn to condos - The Globe and Mail

Why is it a good time to buy a condo? With low mortgage rates and more affordable prices, monthly payments are close to rents – and there is a great selection.....more...

Canada’s economy grows more than expected, but that’s still not very much - Financial Post

Overall, gross domestic product rose 1.2 per cent last year, compared to a gain of 2.5 per cent in 2014 - Statistics Canada On average, economists had predicted zero growth in the fourth quarter of 2015. “It wasn’t good, but against the low bar set by expectations, Canada’s economy managed to deliver at least a bit of a pleasant surprise,” said Avery Shenfeld, chief economist at CIBC World Markets.....more...

Quebec to seek injunction against Energy East pipeline project - Financial Post

The Quebec government is seeking an injunction against the Energy East pipeline project to ensure it is subject to the province’s environmental regulations.....more...

Claudia Cattaneo: Get used to it, the oilsands are unstoppable - Financial Post

The oil sands long-time horizon, which used to be their greatest attribute, could be a hindrance in a more volatile future.....more...

February 29, 2016

2 Million Missing Millennial Households - NAHB

In Canada, declining affordability means that it now takes young Canadians 2 to 3 times longer to save for a downpayment compared to a generation ago, while 42% of first-time homebuyers are getting financial help from the proverbial “Bank of Mom and Dad”. Those that do buy are older than previous generations. How this will affect the economy over the long-term has yet to be fully considered......more...

Dog Parks foster a sense of community? - Everyday Tourist

Calgary is a model city for dog culture research given about 30% of homes have dogs - consistent with other cities in Canada and elsewhere. Calgary has designated 150 off-leash sites in parks across the city (over 17% of all total public open space).....more...

Unified voice eyed for the housing industry - CREB Now

"Our members told us they believed there was more value in a stronger, more unified voice and amalgamation of the two associations would reflect what was already occurring in the marketplace," said Donna Moore, CEO of CHBA - Calgary Region. "Builders are becoming developers, developers are building, renovators are building, builders are renovating and suppliers are now renovating. "Along with that, the work that was being done successfully by both associations was beginning to crossover in some areas, such as the Smarter Growth Initiative."....more...

'Money doesn't match the vision,' veteran city planner tells Edmonton councillors - Edmonton Journal

You have the same problem here that I experienced in Calgary: nice visions, award-winning plans, tough follow-through.” Toderian was Calgary’s downtown planner from 2001 to 2006, and Vancouver’s chief planner from 2006 to 2012. He now consults with cities around the world. – Brent Toderian to Edmonton city council. It’s a different world in our city today, compared to Toderian’s time here – or is it? And Edmonton’s vision far different than our own Municipal Development Plan. What do you think?....more...

Nearly one-quarter of Calgarians believe home prices still 'unreasonably high', poll finds - Calgary Herald

The survey, released by the Angus Reid Institute on Friday, found that Calgarians were divided on whether home prices in the city were too high. In all, 47 per cent of respondents said prices were high — on top of the respondents who said prices were unreasonable, 24 per cent said prices were “high, but understandable given the area.” Meanwhile, 47 per cent of respondents said prices were reasonable (38 per cent) or “maybe a bit low” (nine per cent).....more...

Home ownership still affordable — just not for detached homes in Vancouver or Toronto - Financial Post

“While prices continue to escalate in Vancouver and Toronto markets, there are few signs that housing affordability is problematic elsewhere in Canada. Homes in other markets remain affordable with the situation either improving or remaining fairly stable.” - Craig Wright, chief economist with RBC....more...

Zeroing in on home affordability - Calgary Herald

Zero-lot lines add value....more...

Location and layout help homes hold their value - Calgary Herald

Stepper Homes president Dave Hooge also gives the area of the home high priority. “Access to transit and access to the highway systems are critical,” Hooge says. He also points to the importance of amenities, singling out proximity to parks and lakes as value-add features.....more...

February 25, 2016

Wage data in for the end 2015 - The Owl

Earnings in Alberta still remain the highest among the provinces.....more...

February 24, 2016

Leading through the storm

Tough economic times need new strategies for success. Learn strategies to weather the storm from the Calgary Chamber.....more...

From soup to nuts - CREB Now

“There’s the amount of risk you take when you buy that piece of dirt. You have to imagine you’re looking 15 to 20 years down the road sometimes,” said Guy Huntingford, CEO of UDI - Calgary. “There’s a misconception that it’s just easy to buy a piece of land and get it developed. You have to decide when the market is right. Until it’s right, there’s no point moving forward; you might plan to build X and the market changes and you build Y, instead.”....more...

Kevin Lee’s testimony before the Finance Committee, as well as several follow-up qusetions and answers

CHBA’s advocacy regarding affordability, which include the new fundamentals of housing markets (several of which are discussed in the first article), has the additional benefit of lessening the pressures on government-assisted social housing.....more...

Ottawa wants provinces to form 'working groups' on climate change - CBC News

The federal government that next month's first minister's meeting will result in an agreement from the provinces and territories to spend the next six months consulting on key areas of climate change. The federal government's idea is to set up four working groups to look at clean technology and innovation; carbon pricing; mitigation (reducing GHG emissions); and, adaptation. Commentary: CHBA’s pre-budget recommendations related to climate change - including a permanent, refundable home renovation tax credit that promotes energy-efficient retrofits and encouraging innovation by directing federal research and technical support for new technology and practices– align very well with the government’s environmental priorities outlined in the article. CHBA is also clear that new housing energy efficiency is excellent and should continue to improve voluntarily through innovation, not through code changes that reduce affordability....more...

[Finance Minister] warns balanced budget could lead to recession - CBC News

[The Minister] reiterated his government's argument for "investment," arguing that low economic growth is a reason for the federal government to intervene… Funding for areas like infrastructure and affordable housing, would both improve the current situation for Canadians and foster future growth. Commentary: CHBA makes a similar case in relation to development taxes imposed on new housing in order to pay for infrastructure: that much infrastructure spending is not appropriately a “cost of growth” but an investment in the future prosperity of communities.....more...

February 23, 2016

Minister Morneau Charts New Direction for Canada's Middle Class - Department of Finance Canada

CHBA’s main federal Budget proposals will all contribute to improvement of the economic position of the middle class via carefully targeted federal tax expenditures and direct infrastructure investments. CHBA proposes strategic allocation of new funds already committed in the Liberal platform. The main new tax expenditure would be for home energy retrofits, which could essentially pay for itself by surfacing underground economy activity.....more...

Millennials thinking small for affordable housing - CBC News

Would this work in Calgary?....more...

New housing investment numbers slump to close 2015 - ATB Financial

The numbers really only confirm what we already know – housing investment in December was down due to the energy sector....more...

Oil falls after Saudi minister says country won't cut crude production - Calgary Herald

The current global oil glut will persist into 2017, limiting any chance of a price rebound in the short term as the surplus takes even longer to clear than previously estimated, the International Energy Agency said in its medium-term market report Monday.....more...

Federal government to allocate $250 million to help struggling Alberta deal with oil-price slump - Financial Post

Money from the program is allocated on a per capita basis, at $60 a person.....more...

February 22, 2016

Ottawa’s deficit forecast balloons to $18.4 billion: What the economists say - Financial Post

Re: the liberal’s announcement of more debt coming....more...

Is a single-family home the new luxury item? - CNBC

while this applies to U.S. residents, some of this can be said of Canadians, too....more...

Investment in new housing construction, December 2015 - Statistics Canada

No surprise, spending on new housing construction in December was down 15.8% in Alberta, compared to a year earlier.....more...

The stressed-out oil industry faces an existential crisis amid ‘abyss of $27 oil’ - National Post

After watching prices crash through floor after floor in the worst slump for a generation, the industry is eager for answers. Insiders say it’s not too hard to visualize what markets might look like after the storm — say five years down the line, when today’s cost-cutting creates a supply vacuum that will push up prices. But it’s what happens in the meantime that’s got them scratching their heads.....more...

Mahogany leads single-family home building permits in Calgary - Calgary Herald

Single-family homes still desirable – Mahogany leading the way.....more...

Canadian oil production growth could come to ‘complete standstill,’ IEA warns - Calgary Herald

Canadian oilsands growth is likely to freeze after the projects under construction come on stream as heightened environmental concerns, lack of pipeline access and policy changes slow investment, warned the International Energy Agency.....more...

City Hall isn't listening? Experts say Calgary can do more to engage citizens in projects - Calgary Herald

Civic planning is guided by philosophical decisions and visions that are sometimes laid out years prior. Even if a local decision isn’t popular, it needs to adhere to that vision lest planning become haphazard.....more...

Sweet secondary suites can add value to a home - Calgary Herald

Planning a secondary suite? Here are some tips on design to maximize value.....more...

Federal budget coming March 22 — with a deficit that will likely surpass $20 billion - Financial Post

The Liberal government will head into a federal budget with a projected deficit of $18.4 billion for the 2016-17 fiscal year, but that's before billions of dollars in new stimulus measures.....more...

Trudeau will eventually have to admit pipelines are needed - The Globe and Mail

Commodities such as lumber, nickel, wheat and oil make up roughly 20 per cent of the economy. They represent an even larger share of the exports and investments that help sustain Canada’s envied standard of living. That prosperity hinges on getting those products safely and efficiently to consumers. The price of rejecting every proposed pipeline would be substantial. And it would be paid by every Canadian, regardless of where they live.....more...

February 19, 2016

BC cities must cut (development)red tape for affordable housing funds - Minister

Commentary: CHBA will continue to advocate that all forms of responsible development must be accelerated to address affordability issues, rather than social housing alone. Municipal readiness to step up to the plate to relieve regulatory burdens is a key test of their commitment to increasing affordability and choice across Canada.#yyc #yycre #affordability...more...

Stressed industry faces existential crisis amid abyss

Meetings next week will be interesting #oilcrisis #whatwillsaudisdo....more...

How adopted Canadian Jane Jacobs changed city planning from ‘a tragedy of good intentions’ - National Post

[Jane Jacobs] was the first writer who applied a critical intelligence to the failures of town planning. By the time she studied it, in the 1950s, the planning of cities was a tragedy of good intentions that were carelessly applied. Planners came to believe that cities needed to be re-thought from the beginning… Jacobs, who never went to university or studied planning, saw the results obtained by professionals who were blinded by theory. CHBA Commentary: Unfortunately, the concerns about planning theories identified by Jane Jacobs remain relevant today. Living environments overwhelmingly favoured by families with young children continue to be marginalized in future plans. As CHBA points out at every opportunity, this kind of neighbourhood environment is denied to most young families by scarcity-based pricing in many markets.....more...

50 effortless tips to conserve OUR water in the Calgary Region - Calgary Region Focus

Water is one of our most valuable – and shrinking – resource. Learn ways to reduce water usage at home......more...

February 18, 2016

New condominiums Calgary Q4 market update - Altus Group>

Consumers found improved availability and affordability over 2015 as developers competed for a reduced number of potential buyers. The 2015 market saw more new housing options available to consumers squeezed out of the frenzy in 2013 and 2014, with first time buyers and recent migrants taking advantage of the current buyer’s market conditions. New project launches towards the end of September and October helped push sales volumes to just over 3,000 units, yet the pace of sales declined towards the end of the year as the impact of depressed oil prices and the weakened job environment weighed on consumers....more...

The next tax on new home buyers - Ottawa Sun

Over the past 25 years the tax bill on a new home has increased from 3% to about 25%. Inclusionary zoning is not the answer.......more...

It's inevitable that Ottawa plays a central role in carbon pricing - Globe and Mail

Paris was the easy part. The real work of meeting Canada’s obligations on climate change begins with next month’s First Ministers’ meeting. CHBA Commentary: CHBA is emphasizing energy-efficient retrofits of existing homes as a centrepiece of the government’s climate change and economic stimulus agenda. ......more...

BC budget offers help to buyers of new homes - Vancouver Sun

British Columbia will begin collecting new information on citizenship of homebuyers. The government will also raise property transfer taxes to three per cent on $2-million+ homes and, in turn, exempts new homes under $750,000 from PTT......more...

February 17, 2016

Calgary's real estate future: questions and answers - CBC News

Calgary home builders have traditionally responded to market shifts more quickly than in many other major centres in Canada. This has protected the impact of dramatic oversupply that other cities experience when economies, and thus housing demand, slow.....more...

Detached house construction plunges 37% as Calgary market shifts toward multi-family - CBC News

Lots of reasons single-family permits down, says Wendy Jabusch, president of CHBA -Calgary Region. Here’s one: "Our buyer demographic is changing. There are more singles. There are more families that are couples without children and have no intention of having children."....more...

5 things to know about new mortgage rules - CTV News

Impact: The influence the new rules will have over house prices is expected to be small, experts say, given their narrow reach.....more...

6 Hurdles to Redevelopment in Calgary - Smarter Growth Initiative

Growing within existing communities comes with considerable challenges.....more...

Downturn helps working poor find affordable housing - Calgary Herald

Kevin McNichol, vice-president strategy for the Calgary Homeless Foundation, said the easier access to rental markets does help a certain segment of the homeless and working poor population. “Whenever there’s an economic downturn, you will see a slight easing on shelter services. Rents are coming down, and the working poor are suddenly in a situation where they can get housing.....more...

Woman says Calgary non-profit helped her put down roots - Metro Calgary

Her mother helped her change her mind after sending her an ad for Attainable Homes – the city’s non-profit corporation, which gives working Calgarians a hand up in purchasing a home.....more...


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