Happy New Year 2017 – Looking Ahead in Phoenix Real Estate

We have spent 7.5 years in an awesome growth period as a country. On the flip side, this makes us well overdue for a little recession. That's pretty amazing though - considering we've come a long way from foreclosure and losing our homes back in 2008. The interesting thing about being overdue for a recession is this: It's kind of like being overdue for a major earthquake in Los Angeles - except a tiny recession is much more likely to happen yet won't leave your life in shambles. This mini-recession will not be anywhere near as bad as 2008. We won't have to rebuild an entire city, or country, for that matter.   Here are … [Read more...]

Big Box Banks vs. Local Mortgage Banker

Does it really matter who you choose to do your mortgage? Can't you just go down to any ho-hum bank and get a home loan? Or call that spammy 1-800 number (that is most likely a sex hotline) you got from a quick Google search? Yes, it matters! And it’s a big FLIPPIN’ deal! You might be thinking, “Big Box is the way to go because I like everything BIG, GINORMOUS, and boxy—Texas-style!” (Remember that hit song, I'm Boxy and I Know It? LMAO!) But visit any realtor-infused happy hour and you will understand why realtors start breaking out in a cold sweat when they see a pre-qualification from 1-800-Big Box Walmart Wannabe Bank. When you … [Read more...]

What’s the Easiest Way to Invest in Real Estate?

A friend of mine recently asked my opinion about a REIT - Real Estate Investment Trust. You know, those sexy crowd-sourcing ventures where you pool you money with other mogul wannabes and buy retail shops, apartment buildings and office complexes and just watch the cash flow into you pockets. Sort of. Actually, the fund managers do all the work,collecting rents from the tenants and paying the investors dividends when they make a profit. Of course, you know what happens if there is not profit, right? Let's say you have $1000 laying around and you wanted to invest in real estate? Is the REIT the best way to go? Maybe. But before you join the … [Read more...]

The Elusive Tiny Home Near Downtown Mesa

I have heard from several folks over the last week or so who are looking for a tiny home near Downtown Mesa so they can be a part the awesome Main Street community. And it's a good time to get in while the getting is good.  A home near Downtown Mesa, within walking distance of the Light Rail, essentially put you within walking distance to Tempe and Phoenix, while enjoying the funky, artsy vibe that Main Street in Mesa offers. If you haven't been downtown lately, check it out. There is so much going on! OK, it's still a little sleepy, but there aren't many places around anymore where the bartender knows your name, where the cook knows … [Read more...]

No RENTS for the Weary

Are you having trouble finding a rental property in Phoenix right now? Well, you are not alone. Our rental inventory is a fraction of what it was a few years ago. Just to out things in perspective, in 2008,there were roughly 10,000 properties listed for rent in Metro Phoenix. Right now, there are less than 2200 homes or rent, listed on the MLS. And I mean in all of Metro Phoenix, meaning Phoenix and its suburbs.   That figure does not include vacation homes, but good luck there where rents are significantly higher than market rents, due to the furnished and short term nature of these leases. And keep in mind that there were a lot less people … [Read more...]

The Big Pre-Qualification Question

For some, calling a lender to get pre-qualified for a mortgage is an anxiety-riddled, hand-wringing, whiskey-swigging dilemma. Should I or shouldn't I? It's a big deal...or is it? The fact is, it is pretty much pointless to go house-shopping without checking in with a lender first. It's like going shopping without your wallet, only worse. If you forget your wallet, you can ask the cashier to hold onto the awesome bargain you found while you run back home and retrieve the forgotten financials. But if you don't talk to a lender first, you might be shopping at Nordstom's when you really should be shopping at Target (or vice versa). And either … [Read more...]

Yikes! Where are All the Affordable Houses?

Home prices are going up in Phoenix. Great news if you are a seller...not so great if you are a buyer. Particularly a buyer who does not currently own a home. The bar for entry level homes is going up - homes are becoming less affordable. You are jumping onto a moving merry-go-round, my friend. Check out this visual from my good friends are the Cromford Report: Yup...the inventory below $150K is quickly becoming non-existent, and the inventory of affordable homes between $150K-200K is starting to fade away as well. Anything below $250K is going to be gobbled up quickly by strong buyer demand - and guess what? We are on the brink of … [Read more...]

Is This a Good Neighborhood? – The Answer at Last!

I get asked all the time: Is this a GOOD Neighborhood. My answer - How the Heck Should I Know?  I don't blame you for asking the question. I mean, who wants to live in a "bad" neighborhood, right?! But, I really don't know because my idea of a "good" neighborhood is probably not the same as yours. Everyone has a different comfort zone and a different perspective on what makes a neighborhood feel like home. The reality is that I can't really answer that question for you. It depends on what you are looking for. For some people, a gated community with big fancy houses is good.  For others, that gated community might seem pretentious and cold … [Read more...]

Homes For Sale in Phoenix-What’s Hot, What’s Not?

Let's take a look at the current inventory of homes for sale in Phoenix...What's hot and what's not? There are currently more than 17,600 homes for sale in Maricopa County. When you look at the mix of price ranges on a map, you can see a heat map forming representing affordability across the Valley. For homes in price of $200K or less, your best bet is the West side. If you want to live in the East Valley - Mesa, Tempe, Gilbert or Chandler, you are going to need to spend a few more bucks - most homes are $200K and above.  If you want to drop some serious dollars on your new house, northeast Phoenix and Scottsdale are the places to … [Read more...]

Affordable Homes in Phoenix — $200K or Less, Going Fast

A cold hard look at the inventory of affordable homes in Metro Phoenix, priced in the sub-$200K range - the sweet spot for first time and re-entry buyers, is sobering. Folks, there is no sugar coating this factoid. These homes are going fast. There are only about 3300 single family homes in Metro Phoenix - 2,300 in Maricopa County and 1,000 in Pinal County that fall into this price range. That includes homes in the outskirt towns like Wickenburg and Gila Bend, small home, old homes and homes that won't qualify for FHA financing. That might seem like a lot, but in the last year, about 34,000 homes were sold in this price range. Here are … [Read more...]