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Discussion in 'Arizona & New Mexico' started by vinny, Dec 10, 2003.
Where is the best place to live in Arizona? What is average price for 2 bdrm condo?
It's kind of hard to answer. Do you have a job, or are you retired? Do you like big cities? Do you hate the heat? It depends on what your expectations are for an area. The 3 main metro areas in the state are Phoenix, Tucson, and Flagstaff. I'm in Scottsdale, a suburb of Phoenix, and I like it. I am completely sold on Arizona as a place to live. We used to live in Tucson, and it has its own charm.
I have no idea what the average proce for a 2 bedroom condo is, but I would assume that realtor.com can help you there.
Wheather is main expectation. I cant stand New England winters any longer. I'll be going to Barret Jackson auction in Jan. Figured I'd check out different areas while Im there.
Vinny - you might want to check out Vegas too when you're here. Rent a car and head west a couple of hours and you'll be in the most exciting city on the planet. It's also a great place to live and work. Without a doubt it's the fastest growing city on the planet. We have a ski hill half hour away, surfing 3 hours away, great shows & restaurants, a good standard of living, reasonable real estate, and three race tracks within an hour drive! What more could you want? BTW - almost everything is legal out here!
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Before you buy a condo in Phoenix, check out it's weather in the summer, or better yet visit it in July. You may not be able to stand New England winters but you might not be able to stand Phoenix summers either.
Three main areas are Phoenix, Tucson, and Flagstaff? I thought Yuma was bigger than Flag.
Hey,I go out to Phoenix several times a year,(from Chicago) and also in the middle of July. I learned real quick that you definitely do not jump right into your car! (I still remember that...Ouch!!) But,you just learn to stay indoors in the afternoon. It definitely beats the Hell out of these freezing Chicago winters! I'll take the Heat over the Cold anyday. But,Vinny,when you go out there. Stop by just about any Grocery store,and on the way out,they usually have racks with Free "Real Estate" magazines. Grab all of them. There are usually about 3 or 4 differnt ones. Get as many as you can,even if you have to make a couple stops. You are going to be shocked when you see what you can get out there for the Money. I am planning on Moving out there,but,cannot for a few years.(Pretty much all of my Family lives out there) But,in the meantime,planning on getting a Condo or something out there so that I can go out there more frequently,Can travel light,and not have to Rent a car. I'll keep one out there. My Brothers can start it up for me,so that it doesn't die out.
We are having a FChat dinner saturday night
You are welcome to join if you wish.
I also know a few Realitors in the Valley that may be able to help you out also if you are interested.
I lived back east and to me our July/August weather is a cake walk compared to what I endured all those other years growing up. Ten months of average temps in the 70's, to 80's, low wind, clear skies, and great driving.
I Love It!
Don't come to Phoenix for just the weather. There are many places in the USA that have better weather than Arizona. The summers can be unbearable. There is never a break from the heat. You can't hide from the sun. It's doesn't rain in the summer and rarely will you see a cloud. There is no variation in weather conditions. It's hot and sunny every day for 4 months. Remember, more people die from hot weather than from cold. The winters aren't that great either. It gets cold here too. It can be in the high 20s in the mornings and takes forever to warm up. Since Arizona doesn't have daylight savings time, the sun sets around 4:30 in the afternoon. So just as the weather is starting to warm up, it's dark.
Here's a question I ask all the Arizonians. If you had Bill Gate's money or just won the $300 million powerball and you could only live in ONE place for the rest of your life, would it be Arizona? Everyone I have asked said NO.
To answer your question about condo prices. New condos in the Scottsdale area start around $200K for a 2bd 2 car garage. Scottsdale is on the "east side". The "west side" is the up and coming new area. Land is very cheap compared to Scottsdale. You can buy new homes, not condos, starting around $120K
For someone who is planning on making the move to Phoenix within the next 6 months, I feel I can answer this question pretty well:
My wife and I were just out in Phoenix Jan. 8-11 and spent an entire day with a realtor in the area to look at homes. We went through 10 homes and they were in Chandler, Gilbert and Mesa. A decent home starts around $145+. I've seen condos for the low $100's in all areas. Scottsdale is beautiful but higher priced. Again, I've seen some condos in this area for the lower $100's. You can buy lower priced homes but expect to find it in run down shape and maybe not in an ideal location (and also not in that tradition stucco with clay roof look that most people associate western homes to look like). Queen Creek is growing VERY fast and you can build a new home there for $125+. The only downfall is that it is far out of Phoenix in the southeast. Surprise and the rest of the western part of Phoenix is cheap and growing rapidly as well but I've been told it's not as nice as the east valley and it has a lot of retirement areas (I don't know how true this is since I have never went there).
As any place, you can find a large range of prices of homes. But homes are considerably cheaper here than they are in many other parts of the country. Considering you can build a 4500 sq. foot home starting in the low $400's is amazing -- and some of these even has basements and offer almost an acre lot which is not the norm! (This is the Mesa area I am talking about).
Feel free to PM me if you would like more info and photos. I worked with an excellent realtor and I highly recommend contacting her (plus she has a great website).
Peoria,which is just West of Phoenix,isn't bad. Most of it is brand new. New Shopping Centers,new Businesses,and new Homes,which are Nice,Pretty big,and Brand new,Low $100's. Take Bell Rd.,West of I-17 (Black Canyon Freeway),drive along Bell. You'll see that everything there is new. Another area thats supposed to be really nice,new,and inexpensive is Surprise. I've never been up there,yet,but,the last few times that I've been out to Phoenix,even the Arizonians say that it's pretty nice up there. Depends how much you want to spend. I have 2 Brothers that live in North Phoenix. It's nice,but,a little older,and not extravagant by all means.But,quite reasonable. One bro. got a 20 year old House. Nice sized 2 Bedroom,with a big LR,Arizona Room,(he calls it his Chicago room,as,we have "Arizona Rooms" here) Nice Kitchen,decent yard with a heated inground pool for $88K. Needs just a little work,(he's in Construction,so not a big deal) But,he's a single guy that works alot,so,not too big to have to be a chore to keep it clean. But,I also have another Brother that lives in Paradise Valley,and my Mom and Step Dad live in Scottsdale,on an acre,with a nice sprawling home. there are alot of very nice,exceptional homes from high 170's up. Lots in the 2-300K range. new construction is EVERYWHERE out there. But,if you like trees and Grass,there are some really cool older Estate type homes on Central Av,South of Northern Av.that are pretty cool. Or,all the way North from Scottsdale to Cave Creek off of Scottsdale Rd. Lots of really Cool,new homes with super nice Desert landscaping,Mountain views,etc... in all price ranges. Open,with lots of land between houses. Lowest prices for new or newer homes are in the Western 'Burbs,(Peoria,etc...) or Southern 'Burbs,(Mesa,Chandler,etc...) Check out those Real Estate mags.
I can vouch for the Suprise area as i bought myself a new home here. 1000 SqFt 2 Bdrm, 2 Car garage for just under 72K it is now almost at the 105-110K range in Value.
A couple of things to think about is one the new Cardnal football stadium is within 5 miles from house along with the hockey arena. The Arrowhead mall is booming with lots of good dining I.E. Buca Di Beppo, P.F. Changs, Firebirds, Abuelo's, Hooters.........
Contact this Realitor and he can find out exactly what you are looking for. He will also be a Barrett-Jackson so you could also meet up there.
Tell him Rob Guess sent you. I just talked to him today about what you are looking for.
What about Chandler and/or Gilbert? I'm in MA and have been to Scottsdale many times (we have family there and have been vacationing there for many years). With some luck, I am trying to move out to the Phoenix area sometime in the next 6 months or so.
I am familiar with Scottsdale, North Scottsdale, Tempe, and Phoenix. I have looked at new homes (on the internet) in Chandler and Gilbert and the values are very good (compared to MA).
What are these towns like? Any information would be helpful.
Oh, by the way it way -10 Degrees this morning with windchills of -25 today (I hate MA and this weather!)
Chandler and Gilbert are rather nice. Chandler has many older homes, but they are in nice neighborhoods depending where you go. Gilbert has many nice, large, new homes and stuff like that. They are both nice places depending on what your looking for. oh, and it's 64 degrees here in Mesa @ 7:05am.
Then let me be the first to say "yes", it would be Arizona. But Phoenix would be one of the last places I would want to live. It's torturously hot in the summer and way too freakin crowded. Even worse, many of the people came from L.A.
That's why I caution Vinny to look around the state when he comes to visit. There are spots in Arizona that barely reach 100 all summer long and get only a handful of snow days in the winter.
Thats kind of funny,that the Arizonians say "No". One of my brothers,whos been out there since 1989 says that too.(But,he works outside in Construction,and the Summers are brutal,no doubt.) But,the rest of my Family,(2 more Bros.,Mom,Stepdad,Granny.Uncle.Cousin) who have been out there since the Mid 70's all say Yes.They love it there and would never move. But,maybe more North where it doesn't get so Hot. Me,living in Cold ass Chicago,and having Arthritis? Give me the Heat. I am planning on moving out there Full time as soon as my Daughter graduates High School in a few years. I've been going out there 2,3,4 times a year for many years,even in the middle of July,and I love the heat. Also,lots of Rock Stars and a few Actors left L.A. to live in Phoenix area. Crowded? You call THAT crowded? Come up to Chicago some time,and try to commute to work. MOST people spend over an hour in traffic twice a day,every day,(stupid)just to commute. Downtown Chicago is 18 miles from my house. Yet,it takes over an hour to get there during morning Rush. Our antiquated Main highway into Downtown,which cannot be made any bigger,is only 3 lanes wide in both directions! Geez,Scottsdale Rd.,Bell Rd,are that wide and they're just Main thorofares! Come on up to Chicago Right Now. It's below Freezing every day,Zero at night. Crappy,dirty snow everywhere,and,the streets are literally White,because of all of the Road Salt. Traffic. CONSTANT TRAFFIC. No scenery to look at while you drive. But,in Arizona,Mountains,Palm Trees,Cacti. Chicago? Flat. Boring. Noisy. To me,the thought of T-Shirts,Shorts,swimming year round,driving my FERRARI year round. Clean,quiet,scenic,less crowded,close to lots of great places. You can drive to Vegas,Grand Canyon,L.A.,San Diego,Colorado,New Mexico,Mexico. We can drive to Wisconsin or Indiana. Yes.I'll be out there permanently someday.
I moved here in 96 from San Francisco, and it was the best thing I ever did! Talk about great prices on homes, even now it is a deal. I built in North Scottsdale and have found that the "bang for your buck" out here cannot be beat. I would suggest that if you are planning on doing this, do it now before prices go out of sight. Its the only place for motorheads to live!
You said it! In Arizona,you can get 3 times + the House for the same Money here in the Chicago area. AND...the houses in Arizona are New,or pretty new.
Another thing to add as well besides incredible home prices are the property tax. They are EXTREMELY low! I couldn't believe that a $150+ house has annual taxes of $1,000. A house like that in eastern PA in a good school district would be almost $4,000-$5,000/year!
And yes, if I won the $300 million powerball, I would live in Phoenix. I would also buy a LOT of income property as well. I've loved Phoenix since visited it for the first time when I was a kid and wouldn't think twice about living there the rest of my life with all the money in the world...
I figured that I should offer a token recommendation for Ahwatukee. The homes range from $125K to over $4M with the majority being under $200K. Its a group of modern master planned communities, with some (not a lot) of architectural diversity. With the Chandler interchange (completed 2 months ahead of schedule) and the Pecos-202-I10 interchange now open there are few traffic problems. The #1 thing I like about the area is access to South Mountain Park, the largest metropolitan park in the US at 16,000 acres. South Mountain offers outstanding biking, trail running, and hiking year round. Along with many of my neighbors, my wife and I are frequent fliers and the airport is only 20-25 minutes away, I live in the west end of Ahwatukee which extends the trip. What dont I like about the area? While we have every imaginable chain resteraunt and a number of sports bars, we are lacking really high end dining, and small family owned cafes. I'm also disappointed that Roger Penske didn't consult with me when he opened his mega auto mall and museum as far away as possible from my home in north Scottsdale. I dropped off my Porsche this morning and it's a 45-minute haul each way.
Kaller Confirmed Desert Rat
Oh- Sorry Ahwatukee is a region of the city of Phoenix, and is south of South Mountain.