Arizona Real Estate Market

A year ago the recovering Phoenix real estate market suddenly shifted to weak, and the market has remained down ever since. We asked Mike Orr, director of the Center for Real Estate Theory and Practice at the W. P. Carey School of Business, what one word he would use to describe the market this fall. The word he chose was “subdued.”
The U. S. Census Bureau’s household formation report offers hope that the market is regain momentum again, says Mike Orr, director of the Center for real Estate Theory and Practice at the W. P. Carey School of Business.

The housing data for April paints a picture of a quiet market, in sharp contrast to April of a year ago when buyers outnumbered sellers. And, the March rise in single family house prices did not hold for April, when prices were virtually stable. And demand remained weak, especially among first-time homebuyers. Think of it as a holding pattern until those who are recovering from foreclosures and short sales can qualify for mortgages again.

According to March data, the median sales price of a single family home in Phoenix returned to the December level after a two-month long dip. Michael Orr, director of the Center for Real Estate Theory and Practice and author of the W. P. Carey School’s monthly housing report, had predicted the March price increase. But don’t read too much into it, he says. It’s a seasonal effect.

January usually claims the dubious distinction as the slowest month of the year, according to Michael Orr, director of the Center for Real Estate Theory and Practice at the W. P. Carey School, but this year February isn’t much better. In a normal February, people are out shopping — and buying — homes, but this year that early spring burst of energy hasn’t materialized. The lack of activity is a shocking contrast to last spring.