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I have sold a property at 3309 73 ERIN WOODS CRT SE in CALGARY.
Cozy 1 bedroom condo in Erinwoods, quiet building perfect for first time buyer or as investment property. Spacious kitchen with dark cabinets, built-in storage shelves, island with breakfast bar, open to living room and balcony. Large Master bedroom retreat with plenty of closet storage space. Brand new carpet just installed. Conveniences such as insuite laundry, passenger elevator, parking stall right at the front door, bike storage, low condo fees that include all the major utilities are added bonuses! Professionally managed building complex with solid concrete construction. Location allows quick access to Peigan Trail going to Deerfoot Trail or Stoney Trail, near shops, restaurants, and public transit. Don't miss out - call now!
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We all can remember Halloween as children, the orange and black paper cutouts, costumes and candies galore! But it is actually celebrated differently in other countries. For many nations around the world, this festive fun-filled day is a celebration of spirits, a time to honour the dead. We in America have turned it into a meaningless night of play, and for some, destruction.

Halloween is believed to date back to about 1745 of Christian origin when the Celtics had Harvest Festivals and Festivals of the Dead. Originally called Hallowmas, it was also known as Triduum of All Hallows, which derives as a religious observance lasting for three days. These three days of Hallowmas includes All Hallows' Eve, All Saints' Day and All Soul's Day, which lasts from October 31 to November 2 every year. The dates of Hallowmas were established in the 8th Century AD.

The tradition of dressing up in costumes, going door to door dates back to the 1800s in Scotland at Halloween, where children and poor people would sing and say prayers for the dead in return for cakes, fruit and money.

By the 1930s, people turned the occasion into chaos with vandalism and a 'ritual begging' for treats. Even today, the phrase "Trick or Treat' suggests an odious threat.

According to Wikipedia, the earliest known use of the term "trick or treat" appeared in 1927, from Blackie, Alberta, in the following article:

"Hallowe’en provided an opportunity for real strenuous fun. No real damage was done except to the temper of some who had to hunt for wagon wheels, gates, wagons, barrels, etc., much of which decorated the front street. The youthful tormentors were at back door and front demanding edible plunder by the word “trick or treat” to which the inmates gladly responded and sent the robbers away rejoicing."  (source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trick_or_treat writes "'Trick or Treat' Is Demand," Herald (Lethbridge, Alberta), November 4, 1927, p. 5, dateline Blackie, Alberta, Nov. 3.)

The term 'Trick or Treat' did not start in North America until the early 1950s.

In Austria, people leave bread, water and a lighted lamp on the table before bed.

In Belgium, it is customary to light candles in memory of relatives who have passed.

In Canada, the 1800s brought the arrival of Scottish and Irish immigrants along with their celebrations of Halloween which includes carving jack O'Lanterns, decorating homes with pumpkins and corn stalks, and trick or treating.

In China, Halloween is called Teng Chieh where food and water are placed in front of photographs of dead family members and bondfires and lanters are lit to light the paths for spirits to travel the earth on that night. Buddhist worshippers fold boats from paper which are burned in the late hours to remember the dead and to free the spirits that are stuck on earth and guide them to heaven. Monks chant sacred verses while offerings of fruit are presented.

In Czechoslovakia, one chair is placed for each living family member by the fireside and another chair for each family member's spirit.

In England, many years ago, children made "punkies" from large beetroots and carry them through the streets singing the "Punkie Night Song" and knocked on doors asking for money. In some areas, turnip lanters were placed at gates to protect homes from evil spirits. Other customs included tossing objects into a bonfire to frighten spirits away which was also believed to tell your fortune. In modern day England, the act of "trick or treating" has become a popular tradition among the children although many of the older generation does not understand why they are being asked for candy.

In France, they do not celebrate Halloween and is regarded as an "American" holiday.

In Germany, knives are put away to prevent any harm to the returning spirits.

In Ireland, believed to be the birthplace of Halloween, it is a night of celebration for all. Bonfires are lit as they were hundreds of years ago, children dressed up in costumes to go "trick or treating" in their neighbourhoods, playing tricks on their neighbours, and parties with games such as "snap-apple", treasure hunts, and card games. The traditional "barnbrack", a type of fruitcake, is also eaten on Halloween.

In Japan, the "Obon Festival" celebrates the spirits of ancestors with special foods and bright red lanters hung everywhere. Lanters lit with candles are placed in rivers and seas. A fire is lit every night of the festival to show ancestors the way back to their families. This festival takes place during July or August and not on October 31st.

In Korea, "Chusok" is when families thank their ancestors for their prosperities with offerings of rice and fruits at their tombs. This festival takes place in the month of August.

In Mexico, Latin America and Spain, Halloween is known as "El Dia de los Muertos" considered a happy and joyous holiday to remember friends and family who have passed. It is a three day celebration beginning October 31 to November 2 (All Souls' Day). On this day, the dead are believed to return to their homes, so many families build an altar in their home, decorate it with candy, flowers, photographs, water, and the favourite foods and drinks of the deceased. They burn candles and incense to help the spirits find their way home. Relatives also take this time to tidy up the gravesites. Another celebration is to parade a coffin with a live person in it through the streets collecting fruits, flowers and candies. On November 2, the family gathers at the gravesite for a picnic.

In Sweden, "Alla Helgons Dag" is celebrated from October 31 to November 6 and the eve is also celebrated with a shortened working day. The Friday prior is a short day for universities but a day off for school-age children.

However you choose to celebrate Halloween, please make it a safe one!

Sources: wikipedia, www.novareinna.com/festive/world

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I have listed a new property at 3309 73 ERIN WOODS CRT SE in CALGARY.
Cozy 1 bedroom condo in Erinwoods, quiet building perfect for first time buyer or as investment property. Spacious kitchen with dark cabinets, built-in storage shelves, island with breakfast bar, open to living room and balcony. Large Master bedroom retreat with plenty of closet storage space. Brand new carpet just installed. Conveniences such as insuite laundry, passenger elevator, parking stall right at the front door, bike storage, low condo fees that include all the major utilities are added bonuses! Professionally managed building complex with solid concrete construction. Location allows quick access to Peigan Trail going to Deerfoot Trail or Stoney Trail, near shops, restaurants, and public transit. Don't miss out - call now!
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During another cold winter, your top priority is keeping warm on those long, frosty days, and the even longer frosty nights. However, when your power bill comes, to reveal just how much you actually spent heating your home over winter, it can be enough to make you go cold all over, all over again.


Instead, use these 15 simple home heating tips next winter to ward off the winter chills, and keep the power bills at bay. Below are 15 quick and easy ways you can save on heating your house through winter, and they won’t cost a cent to implement in your home.

1 Let in the Light

You might not associate winter with warm sunshine, but even a little bit of light can take the bite out of the cold in your home. Winter sunshine is golden and so get into the habit of opening the curtains in every room of your house during the day to let in the sunlight. Plus, where the sunshine comes streaming through the window is the perfect place to retreat with a book or a cup of coffee.

2 Adjust Window Hangings to Your Winter

Depending on which part of the country you live in, you may experience blistering hot summers and mild winters, or you may shiver through freezing winters and enjoy pleasantly warm summers. Whatever your situation, make sure your curtains reflect your seasons. For example if you battle with hot summers you’re likely to have thick curtains to block out the sun, therefore make sure that in winter you take down your heavy window hangings to let the winter sun inside. Or if you enjoy mild summers and have light summer curtains to let in the balmy breezes, swap them out for thicker curtains in the winter to keep in the warmth.

3 Close Your Doors When Heating

In the warmer weather you may get into the habit of leaving your doors open and just closing your screen door to let fresh air into your home. Or perhaps the doors in your home are often left open to let pets in and out, or because absent-minded children are always leaving them open. Well winter is the time to be vigilant about keeping all external door closed when trying to heat your home. Not only will open doors let the warmth from your heater right out again, but will also let all that cold air inside.

4 Close Your Windows When Heating

As you make a check of your doors before turning the heater on this winter, check the windows as you go too because even a slightly ajar window can suck all that warm air away, while creating an unpleasant cold draught.

5 Selective Ducted Heating

If you have a ducted heating and cooling system in your home, then there is likely to be a vent in each room, and one in the hallways and entry way. Well, if some of the rooms in your home are unoccupied when you turn the heating on – the spare room, or your daughter’s room while she’s having a sleepover – go in and close the vent to that duct to avoid heating unoccupied space.

6 Close the Doors to Unoccupied Rooms

Once you have closed off the vents in any unoccupied spaces, close the door on your way you too, there is no point in sending warm air into a room you’re not using. Closing the bathroom, laundry and toilet doors is especially important in winter as these are the draughtiest rooms and will steal a lot of your heat if their doors are left open.

7 Layer Up Your Clothing

Of course the best way to save on the cost of running your heating system is to not run it at all. Instead put on an extra jumper or too, some woolly socks and even put a rug around you while you watch TV and once you’re rugged up, then decide if you’re still cold enough to warrant the heater. Chances are, you’ll forget all about the heater and be as snug as a bug without it.

8 Layer Up Your Bedding

There is nothing worse than being woken up by the cold in the middle of the night. To combat this, many people sleep with their heating running through the night. Instead, add a few extra blankets to your bed and make sure they’re not going to fall off in the night; you may even decide to leave your woolly socks on. In a cosy and warm bed, you won’t need to leave the heater running during the night.

9 Close the Fireplace When Not in Use

When your fireplace is not warming your home, you can be sure it is cooling it. When not in use your fireplace is simply another way for cold air to enter your home. Therefore, close the glass door on your fireplace when you’re not using it.

10 Turn the Heat Down or Off at Night

If you’re already layered up in warm clothing and extra blankets, you should be able to turn the heat right down or even off when you go to bed and still keep warm during the night. If you have a programmable heating thermostat, remember to program it to turn off, or down at night so you don’t have to worry about remembering.

11 Turn the Heat Down or off When You Leave Home

If you are heading out of the house to run an errand or pick up the kids from school you want the house to be warm when you return, and for it to be somewhere warm and dry for your family to come home to. However, this doesn’t mean the heating needs to stay at the same level as when you’re home and you can turn your thermostat right down and keep the chill out of the air for when you return.

12 Turn the Heat Down or off When You’re at Work

If your house is going to stand empty all day while you are at work and the kids are at school, why would you pay to heat an empty house? Unless you’ve left pets at home and the weather is so incredibly frosty that your pets will greet you with frostbitten tails when you return, program your heating system to turn off during the day, during the week. You can even program your heating to come back on half an hour before you and your family are expected home, so you can still return to a warm house, not a hefty power bill.

13 Turn the Heat Off During the Day

We all know it’s the winter nights which are the coldest, so when you are able to open the blinds and let the sun in to naturally warm your home during the day, make sure you turn your heating off. Plus, if you are home during the day, you’re likely to be moving around a lot more, so are going to stay naturally warmer too.

14 Seal All Exits

Even when you have closed all the windows and doors you might still feel a draught in your home during winter. Not only is this annoying, it’s going to let your warm air out and make your heating work harder. Therefore, start up a search for the draught and find a way to stop it. It might be coming from under the bathroom door and you need to lay a towel along the floor in front of the door. Or perhaps the glass in your front door has moved and needs a quick application of sealant this winter.

15 Snuggle Up

Yes, body heat will keep you warm, but even if you’re sleeping alone you can still take something warm to bed by filling up your hot water bottle; that’s right – you’ve probably forgotten you even had one, when you’ve been able to simply crank up the heat to keep warm at night. However, to save money on your heating bill, turn the thermostat down and stay warm at night with a simple and effective hot water bottle by your side.

Finding ways to save money on your heating bill is easy when you start looking and perhaps you already have some effective home heating tricks of your own to cut the costs of your power bill. However you keep warm this winter, remember that you’re not just watching your power usage for your pocket, but also for the planet.


Source: http://canadianfinanceblog.com/top-15-ways-to-save-money-on-heating-your-house/

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Calgary Real Estate Board says communities outside city setting records

New figures released by the Calgary Real Estate Board show third quarter home sales in outlying areas around Calgary reached historic heights, mostly due to lack of affordable options in the city.

Airdrie, Cochrane and Okotoks all recorded the highest third-quarter sales activity on record, led by single-family home sales.


Calgary Real Estate Board officials say while there is no evidence to suggest people are leaving Calgary for surrounding areas in significant numbers yet, affordability is becoming a major concern for home buyers in the region. And outlying communities traditionally have lower taxes than Calgary.


“People are moving to the area … a lot of people are buying in Calgary, but some people who either can’t afford the prices in Calgary or who are looking for different type of lifestyle, are choosing to look at the surrounding towns,” said Calgary Real Estate Board spokesman Doug Firby.


Firby says tight Calgary rental markets combined with a declining supply of affordable single-family homes in the city contributed to the growth in the third quarter. Additional demand after the June flood further boosted growth in more affordable communities.


“Rental units in Calgary are at a virtual zero per cent,” Firby said. “It really is a question of affordability.”

Calgary Real Estate


Earlier in the mayoral campaign Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi laughed off suggestions by some economists that high property tax increases and issues of affordability for Calgary real estate could force people to move to more suburban areas around the city. On Wednesday, Nenshi said he wasn’t concerned with the new numbers that show record sales in outlying areas.


“They’re starting from a very small base,” Nenshi said. “Calgary still has greater than 90 per cent of the population of the region …”


As of September, a typical single-family home in surrounding towns reached $351,400, a year-over-year increase of five per cent, according to the Calgary Real Estate Board. Meanwhile, Calgary single-family homes benchmark prices totaled $463,700 in September, a seven per cent increase over the previous year.


Numbers show weaker activity in High River following the floods did not outweigh the aggregate gains recorded in the surrounding towns. Sales in surrounding towns totaled to 1,288 units, 22 per cent higher than third-quarter sales in 2012.


But home sales figures in outlying areas is ultimately good for the entire region, said CREB’s chief economist.


“The entire region has benefited from the economic prosperity, as employment gains and stronger than expected net migration has supported housing demand,” said Ann-Marie Lurie. “However, price levels remain significantly lower than those in the city and are growing at a slower pace.”


Airdrie’s pricing for a single-family home reached $365,100, surpassing unadjusted highs recorded in 2007. Residential sales in Airdrie increased 14 per cent over the previous year, totaling 1,058 units. 80 per cent of sales activity was attributed to single-family home sales, of which more than 60 per cent were priced below $400,000.


Sales in Cochrane also increased seven per cent over 2012. However, Cochrane’s new home listings increased significantly, preventing erosion of inventory levels there compared to the other towns. New product sales accounted for 20 per cent of the transactions recorded in Cochrane, higher than Airdrie, Okotoks and Calgary. Pricing for a single family home in Cochrane averaged $405,933, a five per cent increase over the previous year.

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I have sold a property at 20 HAVENHURST CRES SW in CALGARY.
There hasn't been a home in Haysboro like this listed. The home was brought down to the studs & completely rebuilt. Spray foam insulation was used on the home making it extra efficient. New electrical, plumbing, roof & eavestroughs. Upgrades incl a contemporary open layout with a beautiful kitchen complete with Stainless Steel Whirlpool appliances, white quartz countertops, white glass backsplash & a big island with extra finishing to detail. Dark hardwood floors throughout & even a brand new staircase open to below was put in. The living room has a fireplace & custom built shelving. There were so many fine details to this home that you must see it to believe! The master bedroom has a big closet for his & a walk in for hers. Master ensuite & basement bathroom has infloor heat, soaker tub & quartz counters. The basement is fully finished with bar, laundry & 2 legal bedrooms. The extra large yard in the back is like an Oasis Woodlands. New sod in Front & back yard, back deck to be completed.
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Rise in new listings prevents further tightening in the resale market

City of Calgary residential sales totaled 1,923 units in September, 19 per cent higher than last year and 14 per cent higher than long-term averages for the month.

While sales activity over the past three months has been above long-term trends, it was less so in September than in July and August.

"The impact of the floods likely boosted sales throughout July and August, and it appears as though some of that additional demand is starting to ease," said Ann-Marie Lurie, CREB® chief economist. "Nonetheless, sales growth remains strong, in part because net migration has been stronger than anticipated and rental product is in short supply."

As Calgary’s market remains in seller’s territory, a notable shift is occurring with new listings. While monthly levels of new listings have been declining since 2011, over the past three months the levels of new listings have improved. The growth was not enough to cause any significant changes in inventory levels, but it has helped prevent further tightening in the market.

"The increase in new listings has given buyers more choice," said Becky Walters, CREB® President.

Activity varies by community, property type and price. Consumers searching for lower-priced single family homes often have to adjust expectations or consider alternative communities or property types. While many buyers think the seller’s market conditions should lead to a significant price premium for their property, consumers remain price sensitive.

"Selection is limited in the lower price ranges, but choice has improved for higher prices homes," said Walters.

Condominium apartment and townhouse sales totaled a respective 3,147 and 2,494 after the first three quarters of the year. Year-to-date sales growth is more than double the levels recorded in the single family sector.

"The condominium market offer affordable options for consumers in the city, and the growth reflect that," said Walters. "But keep in mind condominiums still represent less than one-third of residential sales within city limits."

Single family sales totaled 13,006 units after the first three quarters of the year, a 6.7 per cent increase over the previous year. Single family sales increased in the third quarter, while the first two quarters were on pace with activity in 2012.

"Tight market conditions have supported price growth in the Calgary market," said Lurie. "But the pace of unadjusted monthly growth has eased in September."

"While prices show strong year-over-year gains, if the level of new listings continues to improve relative to sales activity, prices should level off for the remainder of the year."

Condominium apartment prices totaled $272,900 in September, a 9.5 per cent increase over 2012 and 0.9 per cent higher than August figures.

Meanwhile, single family and condominium prices totaled a respective $463,700 and $299,100, similar to unadjusted levels recorded in August and more than seven per cent higher on a year-over-year basis.

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