My First Home - Lanny McDonald

Iconic status was off in the future for the 22-year-old winger. The bushy moustache had yet to grow out and become a trademark.

“We bought our first home year three in Toronto,” said Lanny McDonald, reminiscing. “We’d just gotten married. The house was out in Port Credit. Mineola Street, I believe. A bungalow that had a bonus room up above the garage and it was the scariest thing in the world. Oh my gosh. I think it cost $125,000. We were making a good living, certainly no complaints, but buying a first house is frightening. Luckily, it turned out to be absolutely awesome."

“Darryl (Sittler) lived just down the way, on Mississauga Road. Wendy (Sittler) and (my wife) Ardell became great friends. Darryl and I would drive into the games and practices together. We had a great time in that first house. But that commitment … signing your name? Oh my God!”

For McDonald – the Hockey Hall of Famer and 1989 Stanley Cup champion whose iconic No. 9 was retired by the Calgary Flames in 1990 – his number-one priority in a home never changes.

“For me, it has to have the biggest kitchen and family room, attached if possible, because that’s where everyone spends the bulk of their time,” he said. “You’re hanging out over the kitchen counter with the kids. Enjoying a few drinks with friends. There’s laughter, there's conversation. The family room/kitchen area is the hub.”

The McDonalds have owned homes at four different addresses. “We purchased two houses in Toronto,’’ he said, “then we go to Colorado and rent the first year-and-a-half. So I talk with the owners, looking for a little security lifestyle-wise, and they say, ‘You’re not going anywhere. You’re here for life.’ Great. We buy a new house out in a new area and, you guessed it, I’m traded to the Flames two-and-a-half months later! We hadn’t even finished the yard.”

Since arriving in Calgary in November 1982, the family has resided in Springbank, renovating their property four times rather than packing up to relocate.

“It’s been fabulous,” he said. “All our kids went though the school system in the area. The boys played hockey. And now our grandkids have moved back from Montana and they’re attending Springbank and The Edge. Talk about coming full circle.”

Through the intervening years, an older McDonald, now chairman of the Hockey Hall of Fame, has occasionally returned to his residential roots on Mineola Street.

“They’ve bulldozed all the houses there and built mansions,’’ he said, laughing. “I wish we still had the lot because you’re probably talking about $2-to-$2.5-million homes now. I mean, $125,000 sure won’t buy you much there today.”


This month saw a double-digit gain in sales, but last February was one of the slowest levels of activity since the late ’90s.

With the extra day this February, monthly sales totaled 1,197 units.  A combination of these two factors resulted in a 23 per cent improvement over last year, but sales remain well below longer-term trends and consistent with the lower levels reported over the past five years.

“However, this should not diminish the fact that conditions are still improving,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie.

“Calgary is continuing to see slow reductions in the amount of oversupply in the market, from modest changes in demand and reductions in supply. This needs to occur before we can see more stability in prices.”

The overall unadjusted benchmark price was $416,900 in February. This is similar to last month, but nearly one per cent below last year’s levels. Overall, prices remain nearly 11 per cent below the monthly high recorded in 2014.



  • After the first two months of the year, detached sales improved by nearly 12 per cent. Improvement did not occur across all districts, as sales continued to ease in the City Centre, North East and North West districts.
  • Driven by pullbacks mostly in the south and west districts, new listings declined by one per cent in the city so far this year.
  • Improving sales and easing new listings helped reduce inventory levels and reduced months of supply to just below four months in February. This is a significant improvement over the more than five months recorded last February.
  • The benchmark price continued to trend down this month for detached homes, but the pace of decline is easing. Citywide detached prices remain less than one per cent lower than last year’s levels, but price movements vary significantly by district, ranging from a three per cent decline in the City Centre to a two per cent increase in the South district.


  • For the second month in a row, improving sales were met with gains in new listings. This is causing inventory gains.
  • Sales levels were high enough to cause the months of supply to ease, but the persistent oversupply in the market continues to weigh on prices.
  • February benchmark prices eased compared to the previous month and is over two per cent lower than last year’s levels. The overall benchmark apartment price of $244,700 in February is nearly 19 per cent lower than 2014 monthly highs.


  • After the first two months of the year, rising attached sales and easing new listings caused inventories to decline.
  • February months of supply is now below five months, an improvement compared to the past two years.
  • Conditions continue to favour the buyer, but improvements have helped reduce the downward pressure on prices. However, divergent activity continues based on location, as prices declined across most districts, but improved in the West, South East and East districts of the city.
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