March 2015

What’s the buzz….?
The final numbers are out for 2014, and the median single-family-home prices in the Phoenix area officially went up 5.4 percent. That’s according to the latest monthly report from the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University.

The month of February saw a noticeable increase in the number of homes sold. In fact, the number of homes under contract between $150,000 and $600,000 jumped by about a third.

Demand has increased such that if it continues at the current pace, a year from now we could see a significant shortage. Normally 35,000-40,000 new homes spring up every year. But currently, only 12,000 single family homes are being built in the Valley annually. For “new home” owners, your options might be limited.

2015 Looking Good
Nearly every factor generally associated with home sales has been turning for the better. We have more jobs, a growing population, rising rents, additional inventory choices, record-high household net worth, and exceptionally low mortgage rates.

Other factors:

  • Boomerang Buyers—Pent-up housing demand from people who underwent distressed property sales several years ago. The penalty period has timed-out and a steadily increasing number of families should be welcomed back to the market.
  • Millennial Buyers—More Millennial buyers appear to be hopping off the fence and stepping into their own houses. The combination of increasing rent and low interest rates seems to be motivating them into buying.
  • The so-called “Great Recession” held back normal migratory moves—to better school districts, larger homes, or closer to a new job location. But the recession is now long over and mobility is getting back closer to normal.
  • Rising home prices—though in one sense is a negative for transactions as they cut into affordability, are bringing existing homeowners out of underwater status and into the game. Rising home prices and the prospect of such a trend can also act as a confidence booster for homebuyers, knowing that they will build equity over time.
  • Population gains—the country should be constructing about 1.5 million new housing units each year. Instead, housing starts are barely scratching one million in 2014 and were well under a million for the six prior years. In other words, we have had a home construction crisis for the past seven straight years.

All in all, the factors that support home sales are moving in the right direction. Home sales will also move in the right direction in 2015. Existing-home sales are projected to rise by 7 percent, while new-home sales could experience a 30-percent jump.


In this edition:

  • Metro Phoenix home prices hit 7-year high
  • Arizona real estate market returning to normal conditions
  • Arizona forecast to generate nearly 120,000 jobs
  • Phoenix home prices rose 5 percent in 2014
  • Flood of home sales may indicate Millennials diving in
  • Boomerangers returning to housing market
  • It’s Official: First-Time Home Buyers Held Back in 2014
  • Wealthiest ZIP codes in Phoenix
  • Mortgage Rates

Metro Phoenix home prices hit 7-year high
Metro Phoenix’s housing market ended 2014 on a high, after several months of flat prices and sagging sales. Valley home sales climbed 29 percent during December, and the area’s median home sales price increased 2 percent to $215,000. The December median home sales price was a seven-year high.  Click here for complete article.


Arizona real estate market returning to normal conditions
In During a five-year run, ending in 2013, Canadian buyers led a charge into the valley taking advantage of a crippled housing market along with many thousands of foreclosures and a Canadian dollar that sometimes climbed above par on the foreign exchange. Actually, there was a time during that span when Canadians were the largest segment of out-of-state buyers laying down cash for Arizona real estate. Nowadays, not so much.  Click here for complete article.


Arizona forecast to generate nearly 120,000 jobs
Arizona is expected to add around 120,000 jobs in 2015 and 2016, according to a new forecast from the Arizona Department of Administration.  Click here for complete article.


Phoenix home prices rose 5 percent in 2014
The final numbers are out for 2014, and the median single-family-home prices in the Phoenix area officially went up 5.4 percent. That’s according to the latest monthly report from the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University.  Click here for complete article.


Flood of home sales may indicate Millennials diving in
Home sales across metro Phoenix are on track to jump more than 30 percent during the next few months, potentially signaling the restart of the area’s stalled housing recovery, according to a new report released Friday.  Click here for complete article.


Boomerangers returning to housing market
Many former homeowners could start buying again this year and give metro Phoenix’s housing market a much-needed boost. They are called boomerang buyers because they were thrown out of the mortgage market after foreclosures or short sales during the crash but now can qualify for a home loan again.  Click here for complete article.


It’s Official: First-Time Home Buyers Held Back in 2014
First-time buyers purchased nearly one-third of previously owned homes sold in 2014–the same share as 2013, according to a report released Friday by the National Association of Realtors. That’s the lowest share, 29%, since NAR began tracking the data in 2008.  Click here for complete article.


Wealthiest ZIP codes in Phoenix
Every year the Phoenix Business Journal publishes a list of Phoenix metro’s wealthiest ZIP codes.  Two of the top 10 happen to be in Ahwatukee.  Click here for complete article.


Mortgage Rates
U.S. averages as of March 1, 2015:
30 yr. fixed:       3.86%
15 yr. fixed:       3.03%
5/1 ARM:         3.39%
30 yr. jumbo:     4.29%
View current rates


The Kennedy Group is pleased to provide this monthly newsletter.  Our business is built around the concept of educating and providing the personal service that our clients have come to depend upon. Each month we scour through dozens of industry articles, charts, and statistics – selecting those we feel offer the most accurate snapshot of the real estate market, both locally and nationally.

If you would like to stay more informed about both local and national real estate issues, you can see articles as soon as they are published. Just visit our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/Ahwatukee.homes and click the “Like” button.   Real estate news is posted daily, and will be automatically fed to your personal “News Feed”.