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June 2018 Newsletter

Posted by CitySearchCalgary on June 29, 2018
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A Message from Lisa…

Longer days and glorious rays of sunshine… signs that summer is upon us.   This is also a great time to enjoy fresh food and outdoor patios.  The farm-to-table is a delicious social movement that advocates serving local food, and promotes the importance of knowing where your food comes from.   There are many great restaurants in Calgary which specialize with local, seasonal and fresh ingredients.  One of my several and personal favorites is a restaurant located across the street, just steps away, from the Citysearch offices in the community of Mission/Cliff Bungalow just south of the downtown core off of 4rth Street SW is ‘Shokunin’.


“Shokunin was born of the idea to provide exception food and cocktails in a room that is all inclusive.  Crafted cocktails give way to charred yakitoro and small plates shared among friends with a bottle of sake.  Seasonal and local ingredients are combined with traditional techniques and flavor profiles to create a truly contemporary Japanese dining experience.”   Chef Darren MacLean is an amazing chef and is truly passionate about food culture.  I highly recommend booking dinner at Shokinun for a memorable food experience.


This month, we welcome our latest employee, Alexandra (Alex) Hripko.  Alex is my daughter and she has joined Citysearch as a leasing agent.  We are thrilled with her being here working with the best leasing professionals in the industry, Janice Florendine and David Bee.  Here are Alex’s ‘golden rules’.


  1. We all need to do our part in supporting the economy.
  2. Be a rule breaker
  3. Show me your friends and I will tell you who you are
  4. Visualize your dreams
  5. If you think practice is boring… try sitting on the bench
  6. Be a source of inspiration and positivity
  7. When you feel like quitting… think about why you started
  8. Reflect, don’t react
  9. Learn something new every day
  10. Be kind to all… especially to animals.



Some members of our Citysearch team, Dianne, Alex, Janice, and I had the honour to attend the 4th Annual Breakfast on (near) the Bridge fundraiser event! This unique event kicked off at 5AM, rain or shine, held at the Calgary Zoo! All proceeds from the Breakfast on the Bridge event do to the Military Family Resource Centre (MFRC) to assist and support military families in the Calgary area, with special emphasis and focus on the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

A special thank you goes out to Brett Wilson, George Brookman, and the MFRC for hosting this truly special experience – Citysearch was proud to actively participate!

Dianne Butler, Alex Hripko, Brett Wilson, Lisa Hamielec, and Janice Florendine


As a side, thank you for your glowing Google reviews and references…, and the referrals!  We sincerely appreciate your business.


Lisa et al


NONRESIDENT OWNERS – Just a reminder about filing your T216 returns by June 30th!


Don’t Get Penalized for Selling Your Home

Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is enforcing property owners who fail to comply with the new rules requiring a property sale to be reported, even when there is no tax outstanding. It is now a requirement to report the sale of a principal residence on your income tax return…. failing to do so could be subject to a fine…  There is a penalty for not complying.  Canada’s tax system is built on what tax specialists refer to as the personal residence exemption – in other words, you don’t have to pay tax on capital gains when you sell a home that was designated a principal residence of the time you owned it.  You or a spouse, common law partner or a child must have lived in the home at some point during the calendar year.  Reporting the sale of a principal residence was not a requirement before 2016.  These changes are in an effort for the government to close some housing related tax loopholes.  A new requirement for 2017 is to complete a form ‘T2091’, which carries a “Designation of a Property as a Principal Residence by an Individual” label from CRA.  Previously the T2091 only had to be completed if the property was not the tax payers’ principal residence for the entire time they owned it.  We recommend to report the sale of your principal residence promptly to avoid both cost and hassle, and we recommend using a knowledgeable tax accountant.


An Interesting Read…. HomeNews – April 25, 2018

Property management crucial in purchasing decision


by Neil Sharma 25 Apr 2018

Property management companies are becoming crucial factors in buying condos that make long-term economic sense.

Right At Home Realty Broker Manu Singh says exceptional property management is the chief determinant in how little maintenance fees increase during his clients’ tenures in their condos.

“We see that there are property managers that have good historical records of upkeeping buildings, yet remaining cost-efficient,” he said. “There’s an inverse relationship between maintenance fees and selling price down the road, so if the property manager can be prudent in their management strategies, we see in the long run that they’re able to keep maintenance fees in check and that helps a lot with future retail value with the condo.”

Amenity packages also largely determine the severity of condo fees. Singh’s clients are “sophisticated downtown professionals,” for whom he recommends eschewing superfluous amenities.

“All downtown professionals really want is a party room, as well as an exercise facility, and if it’s good enough they can save on a monthly gym membership,” said Singh. “But they don’t necessarily want excess, like basketball and tennis courts, saunas, steam rooms—extra stuff they won’t use because that hits their costs and then their maintenance fees rise. Buyers are selective and prefer buildings that are efficient. They’re prudent and savvy around not having any extra amenities they’re not going to use. That huge pool is a deterrent nowadays.”

While reputable property managers are paramount, so, too, are builders. Does the builder traditionally develop low-rise suburban homes, but has decided to give condo building the old college try? How do the condo units appreciate over, say, five years?

“If it’s Tridel or Daniels, they’re top-notch brands, but we look at history too, like how many total projects there are in that particular area,” said Singh. “We also look at how many projects are currently on the go. You can see premium builders that take the time to put in good, quality materials, and these are the types of things that help buyers realize their investment is likely to be secure.”

Canada’s three largest real estate markets are saturated with condominiums, so research is imperative—especially if sales agents want happy, returning clients.

“The number one thing I look at is the builder,” said Akshay Dev of REMAX Realty One. “Their background and past record are important—what kind of buildings have they built in the past and how have their values held up? Are they using the same property manager the builder set up or has the board of directors found new property management? If the property management has changed, I dig deeper to find out what happened. Some builders have their in-house property management companies, like Tridel whose company is called Del Property Management. But one has to see on a case by case basis.”


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