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Demand for well-designed multi-family designs is on the upswing

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Multi-family home designs are becoming an affordable and sustainable housing option for those living in some of Canada’s larger metropolitan centres. In Calgary, multi-family homes are a growing part of the market, and two Calgary new homebuilders who have hit the limelight for their leading-edge designs and customer service in the multi-family sphere suggest the trend is here to stay.

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“When customers face higher interest rates, condos, townhomes and street townhomes offer a more affordable housing solution, while downsizers also appreciate the lifestyle benefits of multi-family projects with a lock-and-leave simplicity,” says Tim Logel, president of Logel Homes, a Calgary-based multi-family home building company. The company recently earned the title of Multi-Family Builder of the Year Large Volume and walked the stage for the coveted Grand Award at the BILD-Calgary Region gala on April 22 at the Telus Convention Centre. This is the third consecutive year that Logel Homes has won the stylized silver goose trophy and Builder of the Year title.

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Helping to earn the Multi-Family Builder of the Year Large Volume title, Logel Homes won category awards, including Best New Multi-Family Design (600 to 800 square feet) for its Pratt floor plan, a 670-square-foot, 1.5 bathroom, one-bedroom plan; Best New Multi-Family Home Design (900 to 1,199 square feet) for its two-bedroom, two-bathroom, Cohen 2ES model; and, its Carr 2 won Best Apartment Style Design up to $230,999.

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Also joining Logel Homes as a winner of one of the six grand awards was Calgary’s RareBuilt Homes, which earned accolades as Multi-Family Builder of the Year Small Volume. Kristina Hockenhull, director of sales for RareBuilt Homes also sees multi-family designs as a stylish and affordable option for a range of demographics.

“Certainly, once you get closer to the inner-city, it’s a great option for people. We have a unique demographic in Calgary — townhomes are on the upswing. It’s a great chance to live in a beautifully appointed home, but not have the square footage to worry about,” she says.

Ray Bojalki, CEO of RareBuilt Homes, inside The Rae townhome in the development at Griffith Pointe in the community of Discovery Ridge. RareBuilt Homes won Multi-Family Builder of the Year Small Volume at the BILD-Calgary Region Awards.
Ray Bojalki, CEO of RareBuilt Homes, inside The Rae townhome in the development at Griffith Pointe in the community of Discovery Ridge. RareBuilt Homes won Multi-Family Builder of the Year Small Volume at the BILD-Calgary Region Awards. Photo by Christina Ryan /Postmedia

RareBuilt Homes was founded by Ray Bojakli 10 years ago as a custom home and renovation design/build company. These days the company has added to its roster, expanding into land development and upscale multi-family designs.

“We were just so shocked to win the award,” says Hockenhull. “This is the first time that we have put a submission in, and when they announced us as winner for Builder of the Year Small Volume Multi-Family, nobody at our table was expecting it, so it was a complete surprise. It was incredible.”

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RareBuilt Homes also picked up awards for its Rae and Reef townhome designs, both homes are part of its Griffith Pointe townhome development at Discovery Ridge. The Rae and the Reef were two of the three floor plans offered at the now sold-out development. The Rae won for Best Town Home/Villa $351,000 to $449,999, while the Reef earned accolades for Best Town Home/Villa $450,000 to $525,999.

“The specifications were really high, so people were able to get everything that they wanted in their home,” says Hockenhull, noting that standard finishings included custom mill work, custom hood fans and air conditioning, while ample square footages catered to several demographics. The Rae offers 1,800 square feet and a single-car garage; The Reef is 1,600 square feet with a double garage.

“We saw a lot of single individuals buying, those wanting a fresh start, while our third design in the development, the Reilly, was 100 per cent downsizers, because we added an elevator.”

RareBuilt’s latest townhome offering, Seventeen Hundred at Aspen Estates, which launches at the end of May, continues the trend of incorporating an elevator into the design, as well as adding several sustainability features.

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“These will be 100 per cent solar designs,” says Hockenhull.

Much like RareBuilt Homes, Logel Homes is in ramped-up growth mode right now.

“Our team has doubled in size over the last two years, because our sales growth has doubled in the past two years. This is the strongest demand that we have seen in 20 years,” says Logel.

Logel Homes, formerly Cardel Lifestyles, rebranded in 2017, when Logel, who began his four-decade career in the home building industry with Cardel Homes in the 1980s, brought on his sons and his brother.

He attributes the success of Logel Homes to the company’s focus on quality, innovation, energy efficiency and doing it right the first time. 

“This is the best team that I have ever worked with in all of my years of housing. They work collaboratively with each other, and with the city of Calgary, the consultants and the trades and suppliers — they all have a similar passion for exceeding the customers’ expectations,” says Logel.

He also notes that providing customers with plenty of choice in floor plans and finishes has really been a game changer. Many of Logel Homes’ developments offer up to 12 floor plans to choose from and tap into a key lifestyle choice — walkability.

“People want to be able to walk to the grocery store, retail and restaurants. They want best-in-class locations,” he says, noting that Calgary’s developers are second-to-none in creating top-class master-planned communities.

“They are so well planned out that when we come along, we are just adding to the overall value statement.”

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