An English-style manor home wrapped entirely in stone is the city’s most expensive ever MLS residential listing, with an asking price of $12.25 million.

Sotheby’s International Realty Canada has listed the nearly 10,000-square-foot Aspen Estates home, which includes five bedrooms, seven bathrooms and a 1,200-square-foot patio.

The Aspen Ridge Lane S.W. home — which sits on a full acre — was custom-built by its owner, Jim Quinn of QuinnCorp Communities, the original developer of Aspen Estates, said realtor Corinne Poffenroth, who has the listing.

Poffenroth said the listing includes two separate lots that can be developed. An enclosed galleria connects the primary residence to a 1,000-square-foot carriage house that sits atop a two-level, seven-car garage.

Ann-Marie Lurie, CREB’s chief economist, said the luxury sector comprises about 2.8 per cent of the overall market. For the past couple of years, it was just over three per cent.

It is an overall sign, a reflection, of what’s happening in the economy, adding that new listings in the luxury market represent a greater share of the overall market.

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CALGARY — A Calgary-based real estate trust would control one the largest collections of rental apartments in Canada under a three-way deal involving nearly 25,000 residential suites in eight provinces and two territories.

Under the proposed deal, Northern Property Real Estate Investment Trust of Calgary will acquire True North Apartment Real Estate Investment Trust of Toronto.

Northern would also acquire a 4,650-suite portfolio of multi-family properties from Starlight Investments Ltd., which is controlled by True North chairman Daniel Drimmer.

Drimmer, 42, would become the largest investor in the merged company, to be named Northview Apartment Real Estate Investment. He would have a 14.5 per cent interest in Northview and have the right to name two members of its board.

Northview is expected to be listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange, where Northern Property and True North units are traded.

In total, the Northview would have suites in more than 60 markets in every province but Prince Edward Island and Manitoba, as well as about 800 employees. The largest number of suites is 8,235 in Ontario.

Its head office would be in Calgary, where Northern Property has its base.

Under the proposed deal, True North shareholders would receive 0.3908 of a share of Northern Property for each share. Based on Friday’s closing price, the offer was worth $9 per share when the deal was announced, which was 16 per cent above True North’s closing price of $7.73 per share.

Drimmer and some of his associates, who collectively have 41.9 per cent of True North’s outstanding voting units, have agreed to vote in favour of the transaction.

In addition, Northern Property would pay $535 million — including $316 million cash, $49 million of assumed debt and equity issued by the trust — to acquire a portfolio of apartment suites from a joint venture between Starlight and Public Sector Pension Investment Board, which manages retirement funds for the RCMP, Canadian Forces and the reserve forces.

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The Calgary real estate industry has been instrumental in developing new non-school playgrounds in the city with 21 built in 2013 and 2014 and turned over to the city.

The most recently-built playground was unveiled the other day at the massive Currie Barracks development and a sign of a growing trend as developers and home builders look to attract homebuyers into new neighbourhoods.

Ryan Doherty, director of real estate for Canada Lands Company, a Crown corporation developing Currie Barracks, said the 20,450-square-foot playground, which includes the rubber pad with play equipment, all surrounding paths, landscaping, and seating areas, is in the heart of the community.

Playgrounds built by developers are approved and eventually maintained by the City of Calgary.

Doherty said new playgrounds play a very important role in new residential development.

That playground delivers on a long-term promise with residents of the very highest quality amenities. Residents cannot only engage with one another but engage with the community as well.

Calgarians look forward to the creation of new parks and value accessible outdoor year-round spaces where they can be active. The beautification of community spaces with trees, plants and features such as pathways for walking and cycling trails are valued by residents.

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The rate of decline in year-over-year MLS sales in Calgary is continuing to ease.

 

Calgary Real Estate Board statistics indicate indicate July month-to-date activity in the resale housing market, up to and including Thursday, was down 13.9 per cent to 1,890 transactions compared with the same period a year ago.

It is the smallest year-over-year monthly drop of 2015 which began with a near 40 per cent annual plunge in January.

 

Month-to-date new listings in July were down 8.91 per cent to 2,802 units.

 

The average MLS sale price was off by 1.11 per cent to $476,500. However, the median price was up 2.42 per cent to $435,300.

 

The days on the market to sell a listing rose by 21.21 per cent from 33 days to 40 days.

 

Prices are remaining stable year-to-date as a result of a reasonable demand due to lower interest rates and less new inventory coming onto the market. The roles of buyers and sellers have changed in the last 12 months and this is creating a more balanced market to what it was last year. Balance is healthy.

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