Banff, Alta. residents have a chance to buy a home below market value

The Aster offers one-, two- and three-bedroom units and sale prices are limited to cost of construction, says the Town of Banff. (Supplied/The Aster)

Banff residents now have a new opportunity to enjoy a home of their very own in the mountains thanks to an initiative from town officials.

The Banff Housing Corporation says it is now offering qualified residents an entry-level home ownership opportunity at a 33-unit condominium building called The Aster.

According to a release, officials say the sale prices of each of the units in the building is restricted to the cost of construction, making each one "well below market value."

Banff Mayor Corrie DiManno says she is excited to offer the affordable opportunity to residents.

"With the Town of Banff as the developer, we can ensure there is no mark up on the cost of units, providing an opportunity for locals – especially first-time home buyers – to own a high-quality, modern home in the heart of town."

However, who is going to be able to live in the building will be left up to chance.

That's because more than 400 people have already said they're interested in buying in, so officials say they will be deciding by conducting a lottery.

"The lottery will draw applicants and place them in a numerical order. On the set sales day, Jan. 12, 2022, each buyer will be given an opportunity to purchase a dwelling until all units are sold. First, applicants for the barrier-free units will be selected, then first-time home buyers, then all other buyers," officials said in a release.

Applicants are limited to Banff residents that are defined by Parks Canada as:

  • Those whose primary occupation is within Banff National Park;
  • Those who operate a business in Banff National Park and whose presence is required for the day-to-day operation of the business;
  • Retired individuals who, for five consecutive years prior to retirement, were employed in or operated a business in Banff National Park;
  • Retired individuals who resided in Banff National Park at the time of their retirement and who resided there on July 30, 1981;
  • Students who are in full-time attendance at a school in Banff National Park;
  • Lessees of public land in Banff National Park who was the lessee of those lands prior to May 19, 1911 or is a descendant by blood or adoption of a lessee and;
  • Spouses, common-law partners or dependents of any individual listed in the above cases.

Additional information about the building can be found online.