Saturday, January 17, 2009

Home Prices Vary Valleywide

Been doing a lot of first time home buyer shopping lately. Various buyers, various parts of the Valley. Thought it might be interesting to post about home price variation around town, since each of my current buyers is looking for essentially the same thing in different corners of town.

We're looking for a typical "starter home" with:

  • Single family, detached home built since 2001 with no pool

  • 3-4 beds, 2 baths, 2 car garage

  • About 1400-1600 square feet

  • Landscaping and irrigation/sprinklers in front yard

  • Backyard may be landscaped, may be unfinished (dirt)

  • Interior fairly clean by foreclosure standards (probably needs paint & carpet, 1-3 major appliances)

The prices below are guidelines, not absolutes. In most cases you can find homes cheaper than I list here. In this market, you can always get it cheaper. It's just a matter of what "fixer-upper" means to you. If it means paint & carpet, use these prices with confidence. If it means paint, carpet, all appliances, some wall repair, some fixtures... well knock a little bit off these prices. If fixer-upper isn't in your vocabulary, add about $10,000 or so to these prices.


In Avondale, this home will cost you $85,000 to $130,000. Generally, the cutoff point is about $110,000. Pay less and your new home is a few years older and located north of the I-10 freeway, between Loop 101 freeway and Litchfield Road. Pay more than $110,000 and you'll be on the same east-west grid but south of the I-10 freeway in a house about 3 to 6 years old.  Here's some photos of homes that sold since mid-December 2008 that fit this bill:

avondale-starter-home-ext avondale-starter-home-kit avondale-starter-back

A map of Avondale map showing each home sold since mid-December that fits our profile:


In east Mesa, this home costs about $125,000 to $140,000. Chances are that your new pad will be within a mile or two of Signal Butte road, and you'll be about 1 to 3 miles south of the 60 freeway. Pics of the typical:

mesa-starter-home-ext mesa-starter-home-kit

The map of Mesa homes sold since mid-December that fit our criteria:


In Surprise and you can get the same home noted above for about $100,000 to $120,000. You'll probably be living between Bell Road and Waddell Road (which is Thunderbird Road), and between Grand Avenue/the 60 freeway and the 303 Loop freeway. Typical pics:

surprise-starter-home-ext surprise-starter-home-kit surprise-starter-home-back

The map of same:


For comparison, let's say you want to buy this same house in Scottsdale. First, the homes aren't that new. Build dates will be in the 1990's and not the 2000's. Pricing is about $250,000 to $300,000.

scottsdale-starter-home-ext scottsdale-starter-home-kit scottsdale-starter-home-back

Make the price jump  to about $330,000 or $350,000 and your new Scottsdale kitchen looks more like the one below, with a bigger, lusher backyard to match.


Either price range, your location will be near Shea Boulevard between the Loop 101 and just east of Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard.



What about Phoenix? Phoenix is so vast that I can't really generalize pricing for this typical 'starter' home in this post. I'll break down the Phoenix regions and pricing in each in a future post.