12/30/2012 09:02 EST | Updated 02/27/2013 04:47 EST

House Prices Alberta: What Half A Million Will Buy You Across Alberta

Alberta's prime housing market continues to have a huge diversity in what consumers can invest in, from cheap homes that come with a price tag of around $30,000 in Calgary to million dollar mansions in Edmonton.

While dwindling pension benefits are forcing many Canadians to rethink how they'll spend their golden years, Calgary was the only city in Canada that saw an increase in home sales from a year ago.

"National sales activity lacks the momentum it had a year ago,'' said Gregory Klump, CREA's chief economist.


"Interest rates have remained low and the economic backdrop has remained supportive for housing activity, so that should leave little doubt that recent changes to mortgage regulations are responsible for having cooled activity," he added.

Experts also say that many retirement destinations favoured by Canadians — including parts of Mexico, Panama and Costa Rica — offer an advantage prized by those on a fixed income: a lower cost of living.

"The reality is... some people retire to Mexico because it's so darn cheap," says Rod Burylo, a Calgary-based financial advisor specializing in international retirement.

While it may not always be affordable, those retiring in Alberta can be sure to have a variety of options to pick from. From waterfront properties that include storage space for a boat, to secluded houses minutes away from town, Alberta has a lot to offer.

Here's a look at what half a million dollars can buy across Alberta:

What Half A Million Will Buy Across Alberta

With files from the Canadian Press