Program makes buying a home more affordable
Families get break on down payment
For first-time buyers Stephen Korkoya and Marie Razafiarisoa achieving home ownership is a long awaited dream come true. But thanks to an initiative spearheaded by Attainable Homes Calgary Corp. (AHCC), in collaboration with local Calgary builder Truman Homes, the couple, along with their eight-year-old daughter, Grace, recently accepted the keys to their new Westbury Park three-bedroom townhome in West Springs on Calgary’s coveted west side.
“It’s an exciting day for me and my family because owning a place is wonderful,” said Korkoya, adding that they had been wanting to purchase a home for a while. “But coming up with the money to pay the down payment is something that’s very hard to do.”
With help from the AHCC homeownership program, the couple, who had been renting a home in Woodbine, was able to fast-track the process with a small down payment.
Designed to bridge the housing affordability gap, AHCC, a nonprofit owned by the City of Calgary, has catapulted more than 500 Calgary families into home ownership in over 12 different developments throughout the city. And all since its inception in 2011. AHCC partners with local builders (currently there are seven participating), offering homes at much lower than market value to those who qualify, while subsidizing the down payment. Through the program, qualified buyers can purchase a new home with a deposit as low as $2,000.
Mayor Naheed Nenshi, who is a director of Attainable Homes Calgary, along with Ward 6 Coun. Richard Pootmans, presented the family with the keys.
“As the price of housing increases in our community, as the price of market rent increases in our community, giving people the opportunity to build their own equity is really important,” said Nenshi.
And adding fuel to the fire, a hot job market and a fiery economy are creating unprecedented population growth.
“That is difficult for a city to absorb,” said Pootmans, noting that collaboration with the development industry is a big part of the solution going forward.
The family’s new home is part of a collection of 54 two-storey, threebedroom, front attached garage townhomes.
“It’s beyond what I was expecting. I love it,” said Korkoya.
Granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and contemporary details are just some of the features included in the Westbury Park townhomes.
Coun. Richard Pootmans, left, and Mayor Naheed Nenshi, right, greeted Stephen Korkoya, Marie Razafiarisoa and daughter Grace.