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Can the Phoenix Real Estate Market Recovery Sustain Itself?

There have been a pair of articles of note of late, spelling doom for the national real estate housing market. The first comes from SeekingAlpha, where the downturn in existing home sales as reported by NAR has the author believing the bull market of the past year-plus is going to stall. I’m hard pressed to disagree, if only because the double-digit appreciating we have seen here in the Phoenix real estate market cannot be sustained. At some point, inventory is going to climb as increasing numbers of home owners either take advantage of the equity recently built or find themselves above […]

Accepting the New Old Normal as Normal

I found myself banging my head against the steering wheel the other day while listening to ESPN Radio. There’s always the internal debate of whether the sports talk radio hosts really believe what they’re saying or are just trying to fill air time – I often hope for the latter – but the sheer stupidity of the statements overrode that thought process. In talking about baseball, one host suggested the powers that be lower the mound in an effort to increase scoring because “young kids” who grew up watching “video game scoring” through the steroids era are going to grow […]

Want $15,000 Toward Your Down Payment on a Phoenix Home?

If you’re looking to purchase a home in the City of Phoenix but may need some help with the down payment and closing costs, the city’s Neighborhood Stabilization Program may be a viable option for you. Through the NSP, eligible buyers may receive up to $15,000 when they purchase designated move-in ready properties. Now, there are some minor hoops to jump through: Buyers need to contribute at least 50 percent of the down payment or a minimum of $1,000, whichever is greater Buyers cannot have their name on the title of any other property Buyers must be permanent, legal U.S. […]

It’s that Time Again, Readers … The Semi-Annual Bachelor Post Returns

To be honest, watching the previews, I wasn’t certain I could deal with yet another season of The Bachelor. We’re officially into territory where the script is repeating itself in extremely painful ways, almost as if the women who are on this show have never watched a prior episode. To whit … Don’t be the one who tells the Bachelor about the bad seed Maybe this dates back before Jillian’s season on The Bachelorette, but we seem to be locked into an internal loop of one woman acting differently in front of the other chicas than she does in front […]

Buyers: The Truth About Listing Agents

It’s interesting where the “related posts” feature at the bottom of all the posts can take a person. For instance, this one was the second link on the list. It’s a post originally written at the start of 2011 but, aside from the fact the co-broke now does appear in the expanded six-page Exclusive Right to Sell form, it holds true. Consider this an important thing to be aware of  for those who use third-party search sites in hopes of striking a bargain with the listing agent. I am a middleman. I’ve accepted the reality of the perception, pejorative as […]

Raising the Bar, Video Fun and Other Tuesday Thoughts …

There’s a group on Facebook theoretically dedicated to “Raise the Bar in Real Estate.” Being a rather self-loathing lot, we tend to spend a lot of time worrying about all that is wrong with the real estate industry, most of which miraculously boils down to the “idiot” agent on the other side of the transaction or the remoras like Zillow and Trulia, who attract lots of eyeballs of people who prefer slick to design to verifiable data. Today, the RTB crowd is frothing at the mouth over this video which shows a would-be buyer at the beginning of his home […]

If You Really Want to Buy a House …

If you really want to buy a house here in the Phoenix real estate market, here are a few helpful things to keep in mind: 1) There is no prize for the person who looks at the most homes. If you’re looking at upwards of two dozen homes and haven’t written an offer either your sense of market value is off, you’re not quite sure what it is that you want or you’re working with an idiot of an agent who can’t translate your wants and needs into a concrete home. 2) Online searches should serve as your first, rough […]

The Scientific Method of House Shopping … or … You Stayed at a Holiday Inn Express, Eh?

Imagine walking into a home and knowing automatically that the price was too high. You’ve never step foot in the neighborhood, never looked at a comparable sale and your total experience in real estate is having looked at dozens of homes yourself before finally deciding on one to purchase. Learning the home has been on the market for only a week, you’re even more certain that it’s overpriced and that in two weeks the price will be dropped. Never mind that there are 9,000 detached homes on the market (more on that new level on Tuesday, after Rosh Hashanah is […]

Again We’re Taught, There’s Nothing New Under the Sun

At the moment, I’m reading “Before the Storm – Barry Goldwater and the Unmaking of the American Consensus,” my first foray into the life of Barry Goldwater. The closest I ever game to the legend himself was seeing the back of his head as he spoke to a classroom of journalism students when I was at Arizona State (he and Walter Cronkite, for whom the school is named, were near-annual visitors.) For all the humor that now seems to be associated with our fair state, courtesy of our governor and sheriff here in Maricopa County, Arizona at one time spawned […]

Perspective After 35 Years in the Desert

Before I became a real estate professional, I was a human being. This could come as a shock to some, but there it is. When I was growing up on the Dobson Ranch in Mesa, there were apartments about a half-mile away – the Haystacks, so named because they greatly resembled barns. Don’t bother looking for them anymore; like most everything else in my old neighborhood, the names changed long ago. When I was a kid, I distinctly remember thinking that there couldn’t be any kids living there because how could kids live in an apartment and not have a […]