Cindy Stephen with the Calgary Herald explores one couple’s decision to buy a new Paired Bungalow in Mahogany from Section23, built by Baywest Homes.

Mahogany residents Gerald and Susan Vikse are living in a condo while their new home is under construction. It wasn’t their original plan, which was to sell their large home in Heritage Pointe, south of Calgary, and downsize to a more manageable one.

“We weren’t sure how long it was going to take to sell, but it sold last November,” says Gerald, an oil and gas project manager. “Then last winter, we spent a lot of time south of the border. When we came back in the spring, we had to decide whether to buy or build something.”

Gerald said putting everything in storage and renting a furnished condo was a stop-gap measure.

“Our kids said we could live with them, but we didn’t think that would be a great solution,” he says, laughing.

Their son had seen ads for Executive Paired Homes developed under the Section23 Developments and Baywest Homes partnership. He toured the show homes located across the street from Mahogany Lake and urged his parents to have a look.

“He thought we would like these homes because of how they were finished and the way they’re built. He thought that the homes were like the house we’re used to,” Gerald says.

A visit to the show homes at 231 Marine Dr. S.E. confirmed their son’s observations, and the Vikses chose the Elm model, a 1,133-square-foot bungalow with an additional 870 square feet in the basement. The couple elected to complete the lower level, adding two more bedrooms, a bathroom and living space.

“There’s a wall downstairs that is the perfect size for an 82-inch TV I have my eye on,” Gerald says with satisfaction.

The Elm has one bedroom up with a master ensuite and open concept living space. The couple made a few alterations to the floor plan, such as adding an office on the main floor.

“Our son is in Auburn Bay and we have a daughter in Okotoks. We have another daughter in Toronto who comes to visit and four grandkids that we see regularly,” Susan says. “We’ve set this up as a family home — just a bit smaller than what we had before.”

Gerald says they looked around at other developments, but as his son surmised, he appreciated the interior finishes in the Executive Paired Homes show homes, the available choices and the excellent service from the team in the sales centre.

“Heidi and Megan were just superb to work with. Top shelf,” he says.

The couple have walked through their bungalow as construction has progressed and say their home is ahead of schedule. Possession is Dec. 13 and they plan on moving in right away, weather permitting.

“After living in a condo, this is going to feel like upsizing again,” Susan says.

Section23 area sales manager Heidi Johnson says the boutique community, built in partnership with Baywest Homes, is wrapping up the first phase of development with room for more in the newly released second and final phase.

“In our current phase, we have one quick-possession bungalow at $595,000 and three two-storey homes, starting at $529,000,” she says. “We also launched 28 new bungalows in the new phase starting in the low $500,000s.”

Some of the upscale features in each home include 10-foot ceilings on the main floor, nine-foot ceilings in the basement, upgraded flooring, quartz and granite countertops throughout, five-piece ensuite, concrete windows wells and triple-pane aluminum-clad windows.

Homes have double detached paired garages in the rear and small, low-maintenance yards.

“What we’re trying to offer is an easier lifestyle for people in an amazing lake community. They have as little maintenance as possible and there are no condo fees. Each home has space enough outdoors for entertaining but not large enough that owners have to do a strenuous amount of work,” she says.

Basement development is optional, but Johnson says most buyers want it done.

“We see mostly empty nesters purchasing with us and they are looking for everything to be completed. Some just do partial development. One bedroom, one bathroom and a rec room, leaving the remaining area for storage,” she says. “We have a lot of downsizers who need extra storage space.”

The bungalow community has been popular among the plus-50 crowd for a few reasons, she says.

“There aren’t a lot of luxury bungalows in this price point. They can take up quite a bit of land and can be priced in the $700,000s, $800,000s and $900,000s,” she says. “For us being in the mid-$500,000s and our location in Mahogany with all the beautiful amenities, close to Seton — we’ve been received very well.”


DEVELOPMENT: Executive Paired Homes
DEVELOPER/BUILDER: Section 23 Developments and Baywest Homes partnership
MODEL: The Elm Executive Paired Bungalow
SIZE: 1,133-square-foot main floor, 870-square-foot basement
PRICE: From the mid-$500,000s, GST included

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