You all know the neighborhoods, the homes were built by the tens of thousands here in the Valley. Tile roof, stucco exterior with elevation A, B, and C differentiated by moving a window or maybe a slightly different pitch to the roof line. Either way, when you drive down the street, they all basically look the same. When the housing market boomed, they were thrown up and sold as fast as you could shake a 2×4. Developers were fat, dumb, and happy throwing up anything people could mortgage.
That was then, this is now:
For several years, we have endured what many people call a “bad” housing market. It has been a time when pricing came down and inventory seemed a-plenty. As property inventories have recently reversed and housing options have become more scarce, some people are saying that a few of these builders may have learned a lesson or two. Time will tell.
Some things I like and can agree about with the folks at ASU are the ideas that people are looking for more diverse housing options, greener lifestyles, and that buyers are less likely to want to live on the fringes of urban areas. They also say that “walkability is a big issue.”
“Lenders and builders have become more interested in smaller infill projects, especially along the Metro light rail line.” – Mark Stapp
Infill projects along the line would be a very welcome addition and could bring some positive change to some of the areas along our current 20 mile route. One of the challenges facing the larger developers in building homes along the light rail line is the lack of large parcels to develop. Hopefully, we will see some quality projects of modest size and scale to compliment the more urban lifestyle these areas could support.
We have actually seen the builders begin to offer new product in the market for over a year now, as I mention in the video below from March of 2011. While there is a demand and a need in cities like Gilbert, Chandler, etc., I would like to see some new inventory along the line for people who want to live, work and play close to home.
Fact or Fiction:
If you are not following the real estate market very closely, some of this stuff may surprise you. In fact, there are still a lot of people that think foreclosures and short sales are on every street in town. Today, I did a search of foreclosures and short sales within ( approximately ) 1/2 mile of the light rail line and found just 10 properties along the entire 20 mile route. Seriously, folks. If you are looking to live near the light rail line, you will be happy to hear that new properties could be on their way. Feel free to contact Nick Bastian for more details.
Hopefully, we will see more cool projects along the line coming to the market soon.