The enduring versatility of the duplex

By Pepper Rodriguez
April 28, 2021

Side-by-side home, a semi-detached home, paired home, a twin home. It seems the duplex has as many names as the ability it has in making homeownership dreams come true.

A duplex is a single structure featuring two residences, each with its own private entrance and one shared wall. Each home is individually owned, and unlike townhomes, have no condo fees. It’s twice the nice at half the price.

Sound transfer used to be the biggest knock against duplexes, but that is largely in the past as the advances in sound attenuation technology and floorplan designs work to limit the creaks and cracks. Many builders now put staircases against these shared walls and away from living rooms and bedrooms to further lessen the chances of sound transfer.

Duplexes continue to be a best-seller for homebuilders as they are seen as an attractive alternative to condos or townhomes, and many are readily available in Edmonton’s best communities. We spoke with a few homebuilders to find out just exactly what the attraction is to this home.

Duplexes also offer a unique versatility for homeowning, as buyers are beginning to realize they can live next to friends and relatives in a paired home. How perfect would it be to buy a duplex where adult children can live in one home and get their aging parents to live next door?

Dream duplex

Robin Nasserdeen, Director of Sales at Coventry Homes, has always believed in the duplex. He says it is the perfect bookend to the homeowning cycle. “It’s the perfect first home for buyers who have grown out of their apartments, and also for those looking to scale down their living space but not their lifestyle,” he tells Edmonton New Home + Condo Guide.

Duplexes have been a consistent best-seller for Coventry, Nasserdeen says, and that their models – all with front attached garages – offer unique opportunities for homebuyers as they provide more convenience.

“You don’t have condo fees, and you only have to share a wall with one neighbour, it’s an ideal home for first-time homebuyers, young families, and downsizers and everyone in between,” he adds.

“The challenge has been getting land in the city to build duplexes affordably, but they have been very popular in our communities outside the city, like Spruce Grove, St. Albert and Ardrossan.”

Ranging in price from the low $300,000s to the low $400,000s, Coventry Homes’ duplexes offer everything a single-family home could. There are four-bedroom options, corner kitchens with walk-in pantries and developable basements for optimum living space.



The 1,624-square-foot Castillo duplex showcases an open concept main Its L-shaped kitchen features a flush eating bar at the island and pantry cabinets beside the fridge. Off the kitchen is the dining area and living room. Upstairs is three bedrooms, two full bathrooms, laundry closet, and a nook for reading or studying.

The Izar, one of their most popular duplex models, is also the biggest at 1,747 square-feet. It has open-to-below options that add to its character and can have up to four bedrooms and three full baths.

Coventry Homes also promises the highest standard specs in the industry, and luxury vinyl plank flooring, and quartz countertops are the norm in most communities. It’s really single-family living at a much affordable price.

“All our home designs are driven by customer feedback, the floorplans we offer are a direct result of what our customers tell us they want in their homes.” Nasserdeen says. “We also have the capability to cater to all our customers’ needs and can personalize the home design to suit their particular lifestyle – even with duplexes.”

Check out what Coventry Homes has to offer at

Pair of aces

Homes by Avi takes pride in all its home designs - but the way they have engineered their duplexes goes beyond all expectations. Their duplex offerings impress with both the thoughtful layout and beautiful finishes, giving homebuyers a first-time home option that not only looks fabulous but also functions exceptionally with their lifestyle.

Not only had Homes by Avi taken pains to ensure that duplex floorplans always allow for the best sightlines to let the most natural light inside, but the technology they have developed for shared walls ensures sound, vibration and air flow are contained to each residence.

“We build our engineered shared walls straight from the basement to the highest ceiling truss, which not only eliminates sound and vibration transfer, but does a great service in successfully managing each individual home’s air quality,” says Micah Dueck, Homes by Avi Edmonton sales manager.

He points out that they engineer their duplex designs to maximize functional livability and space flow. “Each home is designed to maintain the longest line of sight and open flow of space, with focus on introducing a lot of natural light,” he adds.

The duplexes Homes by Avi currently offer are rear detached garage homes, with attractive street fronts that add to the family-friendly appeal.

Dueck says their duplexes have been selling exceedingly well of late, and their duplex line in the west community of Rosenthal have sold out. “We have new models in Maple Crest in the southeast, and the purchaser feedback has been fantastic,” he says. “It could be in part due to the low interest rates, or the changing needs of today’s homebuyer, but we sincerely believe our individualized service and expertise in personalization, unique in the Duplex market, is the main contributor to the recent wave of demand.”

The Finn, Jade and Sasha are their latest duplexes in Maple Crest and range in size from 1,370 to 1,548 square-feet. They are all three-bedroom homes with two-and-a-half baths and a detached rear parking pad. Starting from the $380,000s they are ideal for first-time homebuyers looking to enter the real estate market, but don’t want the added expense of condo fees. They’re also an excellent option for downsizers who like the affordability of a duplex home, but still want the private outdoor space of a single-family dwelling.

“Our plans are based of years of purchaser feedback, and we look forward to continuing to adapt to meet the needs of Edmonton homeowners. We are proud to see our Duplex’s make a positive impact in the way our clients live,” Dueck says.

Discover all of Avi’s home options available at

About Pepper Rodriguez

Pepper Rodriguez is a writer, editor of New Home + Condo Guide's Calgary and Edmonton editions.

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