Looking for new developments & construction in Canmore? There’s something to be said for the process of selecting finishes, watching a building go up, and being the first occupant of a brand new property. Which as the owner of a nearly 20 year old home here in Canmore, I can definitely appreciate! (Warranty?! Yes please!)
Sifting through dead websites and questionable links can make it hard to find solid information on new construction here in the Bow Valley. Maybe you’re looking for a nightly rental investment property, new retirement condo, or a forever home in Canmore. Working with a trusted, local real estate advisor can help you to avoid pitfalls and find the best property for you.
In this article, we will explore:
Maybe you’ve found a sales website online, or visited a sales centre or open house recently. Well done! These are all great ways to get initial information on new developments.
Something you should know: the person giving you information on the development, no matter how friendly, is viewing you as a customer. Their client is the builder. Here’s the difference between these two terms in the context of real estate agent relationships:
An agent’s responsibility to their client:
An agent’s responsibility to a customer:
While the builder representative might make it easy for customers to complete forms and provide info, their loyalty is solely with the builder. They must act only in the builder’s best interests. This means selling their properties for the highest price, in the shortest amount of time.
When you have your own representative, you are a client, not just a “customer”. As a consumer, you are entitled to have your own representation in the purchase of a property.
This means you have someone with undivided loyalty to you, with a fiduciary responsibility to act in your best interests. They can ensure no important contract & warranty details are glazed over, no issues are missed, and your needs are considered every step of the way.
Oh – and nearly 100% of the time (at least with me), it costs you nothing to have your own agent working for you. This is because the builder has already agreed to pay any commissions.
Sometimes, an agent or brokerage can represent both the seller & the buyer in a transaction, if everyone agrees. This can happen often at open houses and with large brokerages with lots of agents working together. This can lead to cost savings for the builder in some cases.
In this case, the agent/brokerage who has been working with the builder to market their properties, becomes “neutral” for this one specific transaction. Note, though they will still wholly represent the builder for all other units in the development.
In this case, you will be asked to sign an “Agreement to represent both Seller and Buyer”. It’s up to you as a consumer to decide if this is something you’re comfortable with.
It’s important to note that with common law real estate brokerage, even if you don’t work with the specific agent whose “name is on the sign” of the development, the developer/builder has hired the entire brokerage, and thus all agents technically represent the builder first, until a dual representation agreement is signed.
Many developments will start with a “pre-sale” or “pre-launch”. This can be an exciting time to get in on the “ground floor” of a property! (or get a penthouse ideally…)
Usually, builder representatives will ask for a refundable deposit, which gives you the potential option to sign a purchase contract on the sales launch day. On this day, they will go down the list of reservations, giving each party a small amount of time to review and sign a purchase contract on the spot with a 10% deposit.
Some issues that can come up with this process are:
All of these things together can be daunting, but don’t fret. There’s a chance to get a unit – and sometimes not every unit will sell on the launch day. The main thing to note here though, is that the process is highly weighted to the benefit of the builder/developer.
First and foremost – you get a brand new property that no one has lived in! Usually the first 10-20 years in the lifespan of a property come with the fewest issues as well, which is a huge plus. Some other key benefits are:
Working with an agent who knows the ins & outs of builder contracts and new developments in Canmore is the best way to get the inside track on anything coming to market. Having someone in your corner is the best way to get what you want out of this important purchase.
There is only so much of Canmore left to develop – so new construction is tight! I’m always here to help if you have any questions on pre-sales, builder contracts, finding developments and more. Let’s connect!
Feel free to call, text, or email Dan today for no-pressure advice,
tips and insights into the Canmore, Cochrane & Banff real estate market.