Buyers drawn by selection, affordability
New construction of multi-family development in cities and towns around Calgary is off to a strong start, with shovels in the ground on more projects than the same time last year, says Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.
New construction of multifamily development in cities and towns surrounding Calgary is off to a stronger start in 2014 than a year earlier, says a federal agency.
Shovels turned in 85 multifamily units in Airdrie, Cochrane and Chestermere in January. This includes apartments, duplexes and townhomes. Last month’s activity marks an 18 per cent increase on the 72 construction starts in these areas during the same time in 2013, says Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.
“Multi-family construction can come in swings,” notes Richard Cho, CMHC’s senior market analyst.
With that said, there’s been a rise in home construction across the Calgary area, he adds.
“The smaller centres offer something different compared to the city of Calgary and there are a number of reasons individuals or households may choose to move out to some of these smaller areas.”
A key factor is often affordability. Home prices in areas outside of Calgary are on average lower than within city limits, says Cho.
“You may get more house for your dollar,” he adds. “We’re also seeing selection within the city coming down. With that, some buyers may be looking elsewhere for their next home.”
Dramatic growth came in Airdrie, where 79 projects broke ground last month compared to 10 a year earlier. Multi-family development is underway in a number of Airdrie’s new communities, including Cooper’s Crossing, Williamstown, Windsong and Ravenswood. Airdrie also out-paced Cochrane and Chestermere in singlefamily construction starts with 56 last month after 53 were in the ground during the same time in 2013.
Chestermere finished with four multi-family construction starts last month after 54 broke ground in the first month of 2013. West of the city, Cochrane had two starts compared to eight a year ago.
Within Calgary’s city limits, there were 790 multi-family construction starts in January. During the same month last year, there were 206.
Construction began on 85 multi-family residences in Airdrie, Cochrane and Chestermere last month.