Calgary couple runs contest to give away Mount Royal mansion

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WATCH ABOVE: After unsuccessfully trying to sell their $3-million Mount Royal home, a Calgary couple is holding a pet photo contest instead of testing the market. Michael King reports – Jun 6, 2019

A Calgary couple is joining in on a new trend for homeowners struggling to sell their high-end properties.

For $35 and a photo of your pet, you’ll be entered to win the near $3 million Mount Royal mansion.

Teresa Rambold and Bill Wyrostok started designing their dream home in 2014, but rising construction costs meant more debt.

“It ended up costing us more then we anticipated,” Wyrostok said. “[We] have got to retire and there’s a time to take revenue out of real-estate.”

READ MORE: Millarville woman charges $25 for a chance to win her $1.7M home

The couple tried putting the house up for sale, but as Calgary’s appetite for high-end homes dropped, they knew it wouldn’t sell without taking a huge loss.

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“The numbers were just too big,” Rambold said. “We needed to do something different. In today’s times, we all need to be creative.”

The Calgary couple decided to turn their bad luck into a potential dream for someone else.

Rambold and Wyrostok decided to start up an amateur photo contest that could determine the home’s next owner.

Rambold said the rules to the contest are clear. It is not a lottery and not a raffle but rather a skill-based contest.

“For every one thousand photos that are uploaded, a semi-finalist will be chosen,” Rambold said. “[The pictures] go to a nonprofit, unbiased board of directors that will decide [who wins] the house.”

READ MORE: Live like a royal in Upper Mount Royal: castle for sale in Calgary

The couple said they need to have 100,000 entries by the end of October. If not, the entry fees are refunded, minus an administration cost. If it’s successful, Wyrostok said they may try running the contest again.

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“We could see you doing it with less expensive homes,” said Wyrostok. “Getting people into homes that maybe can’t even fathom owning a home because of where prices are at.”

Along with the multi-million dollar home, there will also be three runner-up prizes of $50,000 and an additional $100,000 will be donated to two animal charities — a cause that’s close to their heart.

“The MEOW Foundation and AARCS are amazing animal welfare charities, let’s support them,” Rambold said.

Details of the contest are available on their website.