Phoenix Area Housing Market is Improving

Some people think the Phoenix area housing market hit bottom around April of this year. That may well be the case. We won’t know for sure for at least another six to twelve months. We do know that the number of homes sold in the Phoenix area has been higher this year than last. In November, sales of existing homes was 74% higher than in 2008 for ARMLS, the Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service.   There are several factors causing the increase in home sales:  low prices, historically low interest rates, and the first time home buyer tax credit.  The total number of homes listed as available for sale through ARMLS decreased by 30% over the last year.  At the end of November there was a little more than a five month supply of homes for the Greater Phoenix area.  That amount represents a fairly normal amount of inventory.  Creating more of a balance of power between home sellers and home buyers.  However, as always in real estate location, location, location is also a driving factor.  Each neighborhood and city within the Greater Phoenix area has different results.

November Home Sales Results

  • Chandler had sales of 362 existing homes, an increase of 65% over 2008.  The inventory of Chandler homes available for sale decreased by 26%.
  • Gilbert had sales of 382 existing homes, an increase of 64% over 2008.  The inventory of  Gilbert homes available for sale decreased by 24%.
  • Tempe had sales of 125 existing homes, an increase of 111% over 2008.  The inventory of  Tempe homes available for sale decreased by 8%.
  • Mesa had sales of 705 existing homes, an increase of 90% over 2008.  The inventory of Mesa homes available for sale decreased by 29%.
  • Queen Creek had sales of 336 existing homes, an increase of 22% over 2008.  The inventory of Queen Creek homes available for sale decreased by 43%.
  • Scottsdale had sales of 534 exisiting homes, an increase of 11% over 2008.  The inventory of Scottsdale homes available for sale decreased by 19%.
  • Phoenix had sales of 1911 existing homes, an increase of 79% over 2008.  The inventory of Phoenix homes available for sale decreased by 41%.

What do we see happening in the new year for the Phoenix real estate market?  Sales should continue to be strong in the the first half of the year.  The first time home buyer tax credit has been extended to include contracts agreed to by the end of April.   A new tax credit has been added for home owners who have lived in their homes consecutively for five of the past eight years.  It also applies to contracts through the end of April.   Prices should continue to be held at or near current low levels because of the number of foreclosures and short sales on the market.   We have already seen some competitive bidding for homes this year, particularly homes with a list price below $150,000.  If this continues into the new year, it will start to drive home prices up from current levels.

This data is supplied by the Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service.  ARMLS, West USA, and Pat & Amy Monahan do not guarantee the accuracy of the data.