May 16, 2013 | Cody Stuart
Recreation Equals RelaxationThe lakeside getaway. The mountain retreat. A home along the links. Whether your pastime pleasures involve boats, bicycles or birdies, the Calgary area has something to meet your wishes.
Sitting just a short drive away from the glorious Rocky Mountains and with an abundance of golf courses and lakes nearby, Calgary is perfectly positioned to take advantage of Southern Alberta's unique geographical advantages. In a 2012 report issued by RE/MAX, Alberta was singled out as a region where ample selection and affordable pricing have given buyers a leg up in the recreational properties market.
"While buyers are still cautious, they're motivated," said Elton Ash, regional executive vice president, RE/MAX of Western Canada. "Current market conditions have placed them firmly in the driver's seat. While the more favourable climate has factored in, activity has also been fuelled by pent-up demand that's been building since 2008, when many began waiting it out on the sidelines. Opportunity does exist. Canadians love a good deal, and there's no question that there are still some to be had in recreational property markets across the country."
According to RE/MAX, one result of the province's shifting market has been the rise in younger buyers purchasing recreational properties. According to RE/MAX, young buyers with small children drove much of the activity in 2012, taking advantage of attractive costs and low interest rates to achieve the dream of owning a recreation property.
In addition to the wealth of options for golfers in Calgary – with more than 60 courses in the area – a quick drive outside of the city opens up a host of additional possibilities.
Located just a 10-minute drive from Calgary, the town of Chestermere provides a glimpse at what is available for those whose definition of relaxation includes a little recreation.
Offering pristine lakeside living, Chestermere's 4.8 kilometre long lake is perfect for boaters looking for their very own Alberta oasis.
According to CREB®, single-family sales in Chestermere were up slightly in March, increasing from 20 in 2012 to 24 in the same month of 2013. Year-to-date, the average single-family sales price in the town is $498,454, compared to $518,392 in Calgary.
For those whose idea of recreation is more of the mountain variety, Canmore provides buyers with the perfect getaway in the heart of the Rocky Mountains. With the townsfolk's penchant for outdoor activities obvious to anyone who's spent an afternoon walking the town's lively main street, Canmore is a haven for the recreationally inclined.
The Alberta government recently announced the extension of the Rocky Mountain Legacy trail (which currently runs from the town of Banff to the park's eastern gates), an additional eight kilometres to the Travel Alberta Visitor Information Centre in Canmore. The new trail will connect to 26 kilometres of existing pathways in Banff National Park for cyclists, hikers and other non-motorized vehicles.