Young are keen to be­come home­own­ers

RBC poll shows buyer con­fi­dence on up­swing

Calgary Herald - Calgary Herald New Condos - - New Condos - JOSH SKAPIN

More young Cana­di­ans are con­fi­dent in the hous­ing mar­ket and in­tend to buy a home this year, says a new poll by the Royal Bank of Canada. This uptick in in­ter­est from young buy­ers is some­thing condo de­vel­op­ers in Cal­gary say they’ve seen at sales cen­tres.

RBC’s Canada-wide poll shows 86 per cent of those aged 25 to 34 years old think buy­ing a condo or house is a very good in­vest­ment. For the same age range, 41 per cent of re­spon­dents said they in­tend to buy a home this year. That num­ber is up from 25 per cent in 2013.

In Al­berta, 28 per cent of re­spon­dents aged 24 to 34 years old said they in­tend to buy. Last year, it was 22 per cent.

“Many in the 25 to 34 age group would like to stop pay­ing high rents or move out of their par­ents’ base­ment,” says Brad Lo­gel, Cardel Life­styles’ sales and mar­ket­ing man­ager. His com­pany is build­ing and sell­ing projects in Cranston and Sage Hill. Lo­gel says pres­sure on the rental mar­ket ramped up af­ter flood­ing in the city last sum­mer. Many younger buy­ers are vis­it­ing sales cen­tres with their par­ents, adds Lo­gel.

“These par­ents want to help their chil­dren get on the track to home own­er­ship and as­sist with ad­vice and in some cases part of the down pay­ment. They’re ap­palled by the rents their chil­dren are pay­ing and would to see them turn that monthly rent into eq­uity.”

Cardel Life­styles’ Cranston Ridge de­vel­op­ment re­cently opened sales on its sec­ond build­ing and people lined up start­ing at 4 a.m. to pur­chase an apart­ment, says Lo­gel, adding “con­fi­dence is in­deed very high.”

The same goes for in­ter­est at con­crete sky­scrapers in the down­town core, says vice-pres­i­dent of sales and mar­ket­ing for Lake Placid Group of Com­pa­nies Richard Lob­singer. He says his project The Park has “gar­nered a huge re­sponse from young pro­fes­sion­als.” The Park is an 18-storey, 156 unit tower in the Belt­line district.

“With record low in­ter­est rates, a healthy em­ploy­ment scene and Al­berta leading the coun­try in an­nual growth rate, for many first time home buy­ers mak­ing the leap into home own­er­ship has not been a dif­fi­cult de­ci­sion,” says Lob­singer.

“Many young buy­ers are sick of the ex­pen­sive and con­fined rental mar­ket and are see­ing that own­ing is more ad­vanta- geous and valu­able in the long run.”

Ernest Hon with de­vel­op­ment firm Hon Tow­ers says 25- to 34-year-olds rep­re­sent “a very large com­po­nent of the traf­fic” at the sales cen­tre for the com­pany’s Vic­to­ria Park project The Guardian.

Hon says he’s also heard from buy­ers flee­ing the rental mar­ket. But he also points to an up­ward trend in real es­tate property val­ues in Cal­gary.

“This is due to the fact that de­mand for new homes is high with the con­tin- ued growth in Cal­gary’s pop­u­la­tion but a some­what limited growth in sup­ply,” says Hon. “With these mar­ket dy­nam­ics, buy­ers are ex­pect­ing prices to con­tinue to in­crease, es­pe­cially in ar­eas like the Belt­line and Vic­to­ria Park where neigh­bour­hood ameni­ties and streetscap­e are rapidly im­prov­ing.”

Colleen De Neve/ Cal­gary Herald

Ernest Hon, with de­vel­op­ment firm Hon Tow­ers says 25- to 34-year-olds rep­re­sent “a very large com­po­nent of the traf­fic” at the sales cen­tre for the com­pany’s Vic­to­ria Park project, The Guardian.

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