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Allison James

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Posts Tagged ‘Calgary’

Calgary’s Best Spots for Outdoor Winter Fun

Sunday, January 31st, 2016

Calgary’s Best Spots for Outdoor Winter Fun

Now that the holiday season is behind us, it is time to settle in for the long winter – Calgary style – and that means heading outdoors for winter fun.  While the winter wonderlands in Banff and Canmore are just over an hour away, there are plenty of outdoor winter activities to enjoy right here in Calgary.

Calgary’s Walking Trails and Pathways

Calgary is home to the largest network of pathways and walking trails in North America.  Nearly 350 km of the 800 km system of trails and pathways are cleared of snow by the City every year, making it easy to enjoy the natural landscape from easily accessible walking paths. The Bow River pathway system includes several Priority 1 pathways that are cleared of snow within 24 hours.  If the cold is too much for you, take advantage of the City’s renowned +15 System, the elaborate network of 63 enclosed sky bridges connecting over 100 buildings in downtown Calgary. Named for the fact that the bridges were constructed 15 feet off the ground at second story building height, a stroll through a portion of the 20 km system permits you to enjoy the sunshine with protection from harsh weather elements.

Canada Olympic Park

Calgary’s Canada Olympic Park (COP), located off the TransCanada Parkway, is the convenient solution to the quandary of how to squeeze fun and exercise into a busy schedule.  Open seven days a week, COP offers hills and half pipes for beginners to experts in skiing, snowboarding and snow skating, which is roughly akin to skateboarding or snowboarding without bindings.  Come on out and enjoy a few downhill runs or a bobsled run at this world-class facility.

Fish Creek Provincial Park

Fish Creek Park, one of the largest urban parks in the world, is a great spot for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.  The scenery is magnificent and use of the ungroomed natural trails is free of charge.  Snowshoeing is a suitable activity for the entire family and a great way to commune with nature, clear your head and educate children on the wonders of wildlife and the natural world.

Whether you are into action-oriented sports like snowboarding and downhill skiing or the slower pace of a stroll through a grove of fir trees in the park, there is fun to be had all winter long in Calgary.  Grab your skis, snowshoes, skates, sled or hiking boots and head outdoors.  Warm clothes, a cup of hot chocolate or sunshine and a warm chinook wind will help you weather the cold. Welcome to winter in Calgary!

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

Tips for Condo Landlords

Sunday, January 17th, 2016

Tips for Condo Landlords

Recent shifts in the Calgary real estate market have had a noticeable impact on condominium sales – particularly with respect to pricing on luxury, high-end units. Due largely to economic concerns stemming from the downturn in the oil and gas sectors, condos in Calgary just became a little more affordable. The drop in prices is very good news for investors looking to enter the market and for those sellers who can afford to rent out their unit for a period until the market swings back.

Whether you are a newbie investor or an owner/occupant of a condo unit who needs to move but does not wish to sell low, here are a few basic tips to guide you along the path to becoming a successful condo landlord. Understand from the beginning that not all real estate is created equal and the duties and responsibilities of a condo landlord are somewhat different from those associated with renting a single-family home.

Work with an experienced condo Realtor. – An experienced condo Realtor, knowledgeable in the intricacies of the local market, can help you list and market the unit for rent, and direct qualified tenants your way.

Familiarize yourself with the rules & regulations of the condo association. – In reviewing the by-laws of your condo association, the first order of address is to confirm that unit rentals are permitted. If there is a waiting list for rental units, get your unit on it ASAP. Once you have verified that rental of your unit is allowed, be prepared to share copies of all condo rules with prospective tenants. Bear in mind that any violations relating to your tenant’s use of the unit and common areas will be directed to you, as the owner of the unit. Your prospective tenants must understand this and be willing to comply with regulations relating to everything from window coverings to pets and parking spaces.

Establish a fair market rental for the unit. – This is another area where your Realtor can be a great help. You certainly do not want to establish a rent that is too low, but you also do not want to overprice it and lose the tenants to other landlords. Your Realtor can help you fix a rent in line with the market for your building and neighbourhood.

Obtain credit checks and landlord references for all prospective tenants. – The last thing any landlord needs is a deadbeat tenant who pays the rent late, fails to pay at all or trashes the unit. This is why background checks and prior landlord references are so important. Proper screening will help ensure that the tenant you sign a lease with can afford the rent, will pay each month in a timely manner and treat the unit with respect. One bad tenant cost you thousands of dollars in repair and eviction costs.

Consider creative options when competing for quality tenants. – If you find yourself in a tight market with a shortage of qualified tenants able to pay the rental price your condo unit demands, consider some creative marketing incentives to attract tenants and seal the deal. Savvy landords have been known to offer everything from a month’s free rent to a pre-loaded debit card to a free week’s stay at your vacation property. Think about what you have to offer to separate your unit from the pack and attract tenants looking for a sweet deal.

Whether you are looking to become a condo landlord by choice or by the force of circumstances, follow these tips to minimize risk and maximize your profit potential.

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

Why Calgary is More than an Oil Town

Wednesday, January 6th, 2016

Why Calgary is More than an Oil Town

Calgary has long been known as the capital city of Canada’s oil and gas industries.  While energy remains a key player in the Calgary economy, it is by no means the only big player in town.  As the city’s population has boomed over the past thirty years, the economic base in Calgary has quietly diversified.  Today, oil and gas companies employ only 7% of Albertans – a figure that surprises almost everyone.

According to University of Calgary Economics Professor Trevor Tombe, despite the strong presence in Calgary of all the Canadian and international energy companies, the energy industry ranks only fifth in the top sectors of Alberta’s economy, behind construction (the leader), health care, retail trade and professional, scientific and technical services.  Professor Tombe and others argue that it is the tremendous diversity in the Calgary and Alberta economies that has buoyed the region and kept the economy stable despite the energy industry’s recent woes.  Tombe argues, “The unemployment rate is below the national average, the number of new job vacancies relative to the number of workers who are unemployed is better than the national average.”

A quick look at Calgary’s top employers in 2015 reveals that only one in the top five is an energy company – further evidence of the city’s diverse economy.  A look back a few years shows that the movement toward a more diversified economy has been underway for some time. Bruce Graham, the president of Calgary Economic Development believes that the diversification trend is “partly because we’ve grown to a city of over a million people.  So there’s obviously a lot of self-sustaining services that happen here…diversity is quietly happening here in Calgary as you may not expect it.”

While the oil and energy giants reorganize in the wake of a major downturn in their business cycle, the finance & business sector remains strong following a huge growth period in the last 15 years.  Insurance, real estate, educational services, transportation, and manufacturing have all seen exponential growth during the same period.  In the technology sector, Calgary remains home to the largest number of Canadian start-up companies per capita.

The Canadian energy industry is currently making its way through a major down cycle.  Energy companies based in Calgary are, without a doubt, feeling the impact of the downturn and focusing attention and resources on alternative and renewable sources of energy.  Diversification will be the key to survival in a major down cycle.  Those who do it well, will – like the City of Calgary itself – emerge stronger than ever.

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

All I Want for Christmas is a New House

Sunday, December 20th, 2015

All I Want for Christmas is a New House

You have probably heard talk that the holiday season is not a good time to launch a house hunt. That is not necessarily true. Any time of year is a good time to start searching for the home of your dreams. There are, however, a few things to keep in mind during this time of year to make sure your holiday enthusiasm and year-end considerations do not push you into making a rash decision.

Be prepared for low inventory levels.

For many reasons, homeowners are often not enthusiastic about listing their home for sale during the holidays. As a result, inventory is traditionally low this time of year. That does not mean, however, that your dream home is not out there waiting for you, so don’t be shy about looking and remember that there are bargains to be had with sellers who need to close by the end of the year. You won’t know until you sit down with your Realtor and take a look at what’s available. The house that someone else needs to get rid of in a hurry may end up being your best Christmas present ever.

Beware of what lies beneath.

A foot of snow and some well-placed holiday wreaths can hide serious problems if you fail to take a close look. There is no need to waive your right to a home inspection simply because it is disruptive. By all means, politely ask the seller to remove any trimmings that may be hiding drafty windows or holes in the wall. It is your right as a buyer to know exactly what you are paying for. You might also request some recent photos of the home taken during the spring or summer, as well as a seller’s home warranty that protects you against any defects that show up once the decorations are boxed and the snow has melted away.

Don’t allow tidings of comfort and joy to cloud your judgment.

This is sound advice any time of the year, but it is particularly important to keep in mind during the Christmas holiday. Let your Realtor take the lead so you don’t end up overspending while on a Christmas buying frenzy. Remember, that is one of the many good reasons you hired her in the first place. While it is a great time of year to gauge traffic levels and community spirit in a neighbourhood, bear in mind that contagious Christmas spirit and cheerful decorations can make everything look a little better and shine a little brighter. Take a step back and try to envision the property and neighbourhood without all the trimmings and holiday bustle.

Do not hesitate to ask Santa for a new house this year if that is what you need and desire. Remember that the best gifts often arrive in unlikely packages. Maintain an open mind and keep my holiday home shopping tips in mind in searching for the next home for you and your family.

Merry Christmas!

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

Canada’s Booming Senior Real Estate Market

Sunday, September 13th, 2015

Canada’s Booming Senior Real Estate Market

Canada’s growing demographic of retirees and senior citizens is already having a strong impact on real estate market trends. This group of senior buyers and sellers will undoubtedly continue to play a key role in Canada’s real estate market in the years to come.

The numbers are indeed quite staggering.  The older population is booming and according to Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), in 2011 there were approximately 5 million people, aged 65 or older, living in Canada.  By 2036, that number is expected to approach 10.4 million, meaning roughly 1 in 4 Canadians will be a senior citizen.  Clearly, the real estate industry needs to pay attention to this growing population.

One of the many fine qualities of this demographic is that they usually know exactly what they want when it comes to buying a new home.  Interestingly, many are following the same path as younger buyers who seek an urban lifestyle that provides easy access to amenities – restaurants, recreational facilities, cultural centers, etc.   They enter the market with higher income and educational levels than previous generations.  Many of them are also experienced in having lived through numerous real estate transactions during their lives.  They understand the responsibilities of home ownership.  In every respect, they are savvy buyers and sellers.

When representing senior buyers and sellers, I work closely with my clients to help them achieve their own unique goals as they transition into a new phase of their life.   For some, that might mean downsizing to an upscale downtown condo, purchasing at an assisted living facility that caters to their immediate needs or even buying a quaint farmhouse outside of the city.  Since every client and set of circumstances is unique, the possibilities are endless.  As a Realtor, my senior clients pull me in new directions every day and that is a large part of what makes my job fun and exciting.  In every instance, it’s all about embracing the positive aspects of life’s passages and celebrating change with a house that fits.

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

How to Ensure Your Home will Get Showings

Monday, July 27th, 2015

How to Ensure Your Home will Get Showings

Real estate is a highly competitive business.  When you list your property for sale, you immediately enter into competition with every similar property in your neighbourhood that is for sale.  You are all competing for the attention of buyers.  Even in our digital age, very few people purchase a property sight unseen.  Phone inquiries and internet hits are all fine and good, but in order to sell a home, you really need to generate floor traffic and showings.

If you are working with a Realtor and have not had many showings, you need to sit down and pinpoint the problem.  There is a market and a buyer for every home out there, including yours.  You just have to find them and invite them in.  Start by focusing on those factors that are within your control.  You cannot change your neighbourhood and there is not much you can do about your competition, but there are some things you can definitely do to drive traffic toward your property.

Make the home available and easy to show.

Even though it may be inconvenient, you really have to be ready to let prospective buyers into your home at a moment’s notice.  Your Realtor must be reliable and reachable and so must you.  Buyers often view several homes in a neighbourhood at a time and if the house is not available for a showing when they are around, you could lose the opportunity.  Homes that require too much advance notice and complicated instructions for showing are often a turn-off for buyers and their agents. In addition to being accessible, the home should be tidy and free of pet odors, if possible.

Make sure your marketing is up-to-date.

Marketing is the responsibility of your Realtor and to maintain a competitive edge in today’s world, homes are marketed using both traditional and digital outlets.  It starts with good photos and perhaps, a video that entices buyers to want to see more.  In addition to traditional advertising through signage and newspapers, your property should appear in the local MLS and a host of other internet sites catering to buyers in your area.  Your Realtor should be familiar enough with social media to arrange for well-placed postings on Facebook, Twitter and other sites.

Make sure the price is right.

There is no quicker or easier way to discourage showings than to overprice your home.  Your sentimental attachment to your home does not necessarily translate into real value.  That is one of the many reasons you need a professional Realtor to price the property from an objective point of view – free of emotional attachment.  If you are not getting any showings, the first thing to ask is, “Are we priced right?”

These are just a few of the items to consider when listing your home for sale.  If you are not getting the foot traffic you feel your home deserves, sit down quickly with your Realtor and strategize to increase the number of showings.  Price it right, market it effectively and stay accessible to real estate agents and their buyers, and the property will sell itself.

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

Calgary’s Balancing Act

Sunday, July 12th, 2015

Calgary's Balancing Act

Continued uncertainty surrounding the oil and gas industry has definitely had an unsettling impact on the Calgary real estate market in 2015, but several indicators in recent months point to positive trends.  Viewed separately, these statistics may not seem like much, but viewed together, they point to a balancing trend that may be exactly what the volatile Calgary market needs.

In its June 2015 report, entitled Calgary Regional Housing Market Statistics, the Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB) reports that May 2015 marked the first time this year that residential sale prices improved over the previous month. In addition, CREB Chief Economist Ann-Marie Lurie states, “For the third month in a row, new listings have eased compared to last year, helping push the market toward more balanced conditions, despite the current environment of slower sales activity.”   CREB President Corinne Lyall added, “While some challenges continue to exist for sellers, depending on the property type, price and location, the decline in the months of supply points towards more stability for both buyers and sellers.”

Despite a steep drop in the total number of sales from 2014, home values have not suffered a significant hit yet.   The median sales price in Calgary for residential property in May of 2015 was $433,000, down only .26% from a year ago.  Prospective buyers waiting for the anticipated declines in value have yet to see that occur.  Homeowners with lower-priced entry level homes still find themselves firmly entrenched in a sellers’ market, especially those in sought after neighbourhoods.  Higher-priced homes in the luxury market are remaining on the market longer, but most owners are not yet rushing to drop the price.

After an extended period of steady gains and a robust sellers’ market, the balancing act that is currently underway in Calgary may be exactly what is needed to fend off a steep decline in value across the board.   The 2014 freefall in oil and gas prices was largely unexpected and led to uncertainty and erosion in confidence for prospective homebuyers.  Market movement in the coming months will depend largely on the duration of this economic uncertainty.

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

Looking for Something Different on Canada Day?

Sunday, June 28th, 2015

Looking for Something Different on Canada Day

Calgary puts on a great show on Canada Day.  There are historical-themed events, music, food, parades, festivals and more food – all capped off with brilliant fireworks over the Bow River.  There is no shortage of activity and you are sure to find a patriotic celebration whichever way you turn.  Here are a few suggestions for Canada Day fun and adventure a little off the beaten path:

Chinatown Fest

Following its debut last year, Calgary’s Canada Day Chinatown Fest is back by popular demand.  Come on down to Chinatown between 3:00 pm and 10:00 pm to celebrate Canada’s birthday surrounded by the unique sounds, sights and aromas of Chinatown.

Show & Shine

Calgary’s favourite classic car show, Show & Shine, will be held on Canada Day in the East Village in collaboration with the East Village Street Fair.  From 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, in addition to ogling the fine array of festooned classic cars, enjoy the work of local artisans and musicians while sampling some of the fine East Village food.

Celebrate Canada

Celebrate Canada, organized by Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at (AMJ) Calgary, will be held at Prairie Winds Park from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm.  This event beautifully represents Calgary’s tremendous cultural diversity and aims to promote both national pride and neighbourhood spirit. There will be speeches from local and national leaders along with educational displays and recreational activities for children and adults.  You can also participate in guided tours of Calgary’s Baitun Nur Mosque.  This 48,000 sq. ft. building with a steel dome and minaret tower is Calgary’s largest mosque.

Canada Day in Canmore

If you are in need of some fresh mountain air and natural beauty that defies description, head on out to Canmore for your Canada Day festivities.  Canmore’s Canada Day Parade begins at 12:00 noon and the intersection of Fairhoime Dr. and 15th Street.  After the parade, segue into a Centennial Park celebration featuring marching bands, musical acts on a main state and a huge family area with something for everyone.  The music will continue between 7:00 pm and 9:00 pm with live acts on the Civic Centre Center Stage.  Canmore’s fireworks extravaganza will kick off at 10:30 pm in Millenium Park – just a short stroll from Centennial Park.  It all sounds like the ingredients for a perfect day.

On our country’s birthday, we are reminded of all that we, as Canadians, cherish and hold dear.  Despite our differences, there is so much that we all share in common.  Canada Day affords us the opportunity to commemorate the achievements, vision and values of our ancestors while embracing the contributions of today’s generations.

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

Meaningful Gift Ideas for Father’s Day

Sunday, June 14th, 2015

Meaningful Gift Ideas for Father’s Day

Do you struggle to think of a good gift for your dad or other dads in your life on Father’s Day?  If you answered “yes”, you are not alone.  The challenge in finding the perfect gift probably stems from the fact that so many of us feel that no gift can every really convey the depth of the love and gratitude we feel for our dads. When we think back on our lives, it’s not the expensive gifts that we remember, but precious time spent with loved ones. So, here’s a tip for Father’s Day this year – stop trying so hard and instead, consider these ideas for meaningful gifts for Dad.

Tickets to a Sporting Event or Concert

Think about buying your dad tickets to a sporting event or concert with a favorite musician.  This does not have to be done on a large scale.  In fact, small is probably better.  Think minor league baseball game instead of the World Series.  The goal is to spend quality time with your dad while also enjoying something he loves.

Plan a Nature Hike

The sights and sounds of nature tend to bring out the best in all of us.  While taking in a healthy dose of fresh air, seize the opportunity to reminisce with your dad and share a few laughs.  It’s also a good way to catch up on current happenings in your busy lives.

Take a Road Trip

Everybody has someplace they’ve always wanted to visit but haven’t managed to find the time.  Make the time this year and plan a road trip to that place on your dad’s bucket list.  If you can’t come up with a suitable destination, just meander and go where the road takes you.  Enjoy the time with your dad along with whatever sights and sounds come your way. The trip might only take a weekend, but the memories will last forever.

Pay it Forward

What better way to honor Dad for all he has done and continues to do than by paying it forward and helping someone else?  Let’s face it – many dads pretty much have everything they need.  If they don’t have it and decide they want it, they go and buy it owing to their status as grown men.  So instead of stressing over some gift your dad doesn’t even want, remind him just how much you appreciate his love, hard work and sacrifice by making a donation in his name to one of his favorite organizations or charities.  It’s a gift that it is guaranteed to make him proud.

So before investing in another loud tie for Dad or the latest gadget that will gather dust in the back of a closet, think about gifting Dad with the one thing he probably wants the most – a little time with you!

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

Calgary’s Vibrant Ethnic Mix

Sunday, May 31st, 2015

Calgarys Vibrant Ethnic Mix

Add ethnic diversity to the long list of reasons why Calgary is a great place to live in. The economic surge of the past decade has become an open invitation for young people from other provinces and countries to migrate to Calgary and be on a hunt for good jobs. The result is Calgary can now boast of a strong multicultural base with more diversity than any other time in the city’s history. To put it in perspective, in 1959, only 1 in 350 Calgarians was a member of a visible minority. Today, that ratio is 1 in 5, and growing. By 2020, the city’s immigrant population is expected to grow to half a million people speaking 120 different languages.

The young settlers populating Calgary are well-educated, bilingual or trilingual, entrepreneurial and keenly interested in maintaining the quality of life here that we all love. There’s an abundant ethnic mix in all quadrants of the city. Large numbers of Filipino, Chinese, Indian and African immigrants have established themselves in neighbourhoods that reflect the rich societal and culinary influences of their respective groups. The ability to explore and share the delicacies and traditions of different cultures promotes tolerance and appreciation in any community. It helps to cut through the stereotypes and preconceived notions which are the basis for racism, and instead, create a milieu in which racial and cultural diversity is celebrated.

During the annual Calgary Stampede celebration, the faces lining the parade route evolve to have a more mixed look than a few years ago. On weekends, city neighbourhoods play host to dozens of ancestral festivals that pay homage to cultures born in other parts of the globe. The sights, sounds and aromas are so intoxicating that it draws locals and visitors by the thousands. It’s a fun and inexpensive way to enjoy fine weather, good music and delicious food. For those in search of a more sedate experience, fine dining establishments such as Anju and Deli Darbar serve traditional Korean and Indian/Pakistani cuisine, respectively, in ultramodern settings.

Fueled by the energy hike and the need for a learned, skilled labour force, the city known as Cowtown has broadened its horizons and welcomed young workers from other parts of Canada and the rest of the world. The energy boom may have already subsided, but the migration trend is expected to continue, and Calgary will sustainably lead the way as one of Canada’s most diverse and exhilarating cities.

 

Do you need to move to celebrate the changes that are happening in your life? Let me serve you in helping you make the move to the place or home that reflects where you are in life’s journey! I will listen to your needs and use my knowledge and expertise to make this a smooth transition to the right place for you to call home in Calgary. Contact me at 403-708-5873, ajames16@gmail.com, or www.allisonjames.com and let’s get on with your journey!

About Allison James

Allison James has been a realtor® since 1999 with Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd. in the changing Calgary real estate market. A Century 21 Centurion Award 2007 recipient and a member of CREA and AREA, she specializes in residential real estate and has her designations as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist and a Certified Condominium Specialist. These designations testify that she has the expertise and resources to help her clients make a smooth transition to the next step in their life journey. She enjoys helping her clients as they move through many of the same stages of life that she, too, has experienced. The fact that the majority of her business comes from past clients and/or referrals from satisfied clients speaks volumes about her dedication to the high quality of service that she offers her clients to meet their Calgary and surrounding area real estate needs. She is a mother of four who are all on their own now, and a grandmother of eight. Besides helping people buy or sell real estate, she loves spending time with her family, being active outdoors, traveling and meeting new people, photography, playing the drums, reading, scuba diving, listening to music, learning new things, and nurturing her spiritual growth.

Allison James, Century 21 Bamber Realty Ltd.
1612 17 Ave SW, Calgary, Alberta, T2T 0E3
Tel: 403-245-0773 Toll Free: 403-708-5873 Cell: 403-708-5873 Fax: 403-592-9187
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