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Tag soup! w/a side of market data :)

Well hello there friend! :)

Quite the experience this past week... after all them miles walked, hours sat, more miles walked... we got one! THEN! he evaded us... in hindsight the shot may have been a bit higher than in the effective area, but it was nonetheless a good shot... however we could not find him the day after as it was getting really dark the night we got him. My teacher/mentor buddy whom I was tagging along with has good ethical intentions when he attempts to take an animal. Although we didn't get to walk away with anything, he wasn't prepared to shoot another animal all knowing he had already taken one down the day before.

So, we ended the hunt with some whiskey, probably more than needed, and came home just before all the rain and snow and had "tag soup." .. (when you're drawn for a hunt they issue you a tag... when you don't kill anything you come home and make soup with your tag... cause that's all it's good for then) hahah :)

In all honesty, I would have enjoyed the learning experience of field dressing and such, but like eating ribs... I'm not a fan because it's too messy. However! I was bummed we didn't get to wear the 100lb quarter pieces humping/hiking it back to camp... hahah! I go on vacation to go to work! >D Get up at 4am, hike 20-30 minutes, sit and wait 3-4hrs, hike back, eat sumptn, go wonder and track for 3-4hrs, go back to the site, sit for 3-4hrs, hike back to the camp 20-30 minutes, eat, sleep - repeat. I think we averaged about 5-6miles a day. Which was awesome. :)

All in all, it was an awesome trip and was grateful to have had that opportunity. :)

Pretty cool timing though! I had a really nice market update commentary that I found wicked inciteful. I have the entire market PDF attached, however, here below are his thoughts. Very interesting how the California market is affecting our Pheonix market.


Commentary by Tom Ruff

Just back from the NAR convention in San Francisco, and my oh my how the city has changed. The once bohemian/hippie mecca now lays claim to the most expensive housing in the West with a median home price of $1.4 million. At the gas pump, prices are $5 a gallon. Even the language has changed. The Berkeley City Council has voted unanimously to revise the city municipal code with gender-neutral language. A manhole is now known as a maintenance hole and manpower is now human effort. Just an observation, but officials there need to summon all the human effort they can to resolve their very visible housing inequities.

At the convention, Lawrence Yun, the NAR chief economist, described San Francisco as a city of haves and have nots using the example of two schoolteachers, one who purchased a median price home in 2000 for $400,000 and the other who chose to rent. The homeowner is now a millionaire and the renter is paying $3,700 per month in rent and has nothing. All because one chose to buy and the other chose to rent. This level of inequity is not conducive to a community, which explains the flood of recent articles about people fleeing not only San Francisco, but California in general. The San Francisco Bay area is second only to New York when it comes to people leaving. Why is this important to us? Arizona, specifically Phoenix metro, is one of the California migrants’ top 5 destinations of choice.

What Our Data Tells Us

When we look at public records data by The Information Market for this year, we see approximately 1 in 20 homebuyers and 1 in 10 “million-dollar plus” homebuyers came from California. The median purchase price for California buyers in our market was $325,000, well above our annual median. For the purposes of this study we viewed only homes purchased where the buyer was defined as either a single male, single female or married couple. This was done to eliminate institutional and investor purchases.

The one metric that defines the overall success of our industry is total dollar sales volume. It’s quite remarkable when we reconcile the market expectations from last October with the reality of today. Just one year ago interest rates were rising, the stock market was on the verge of a 20% drop, housing was in the doldrums and national news reports were loud and negative. With all the negative momentum, who would have believed that 2019 would account for the highest gross dollar sales volume in ARMLS history? I’m here today to say when the final numbers are counted, 2019 will beat out 2005 and rank number 1.

ARMLS Total Dollar Sales Volume

In almost every election year (exceptions include the anomaly that was the rise and fall of 2004-2008), we see total dollar sales volume increase significantly from the previous year. I anticipate this trend to continue in 2020. Why this happens, I’m not sure. Part of my reasoning comes from our own data. The other crystal ball I look to is Ivy Zelman. Zelman published a snapshot of housing-related components on the S&P, which shows them out-performing the standard S&P return.

Zelman and Associates Housing Stock Chart

Zelman also shares her concerns with affordability in the market.

(I found this incredibly helpful for perspective on renting vs owning... well articulated)

“On the forefront of my mind recently is the extreme deficit in affordable housing. One example that our industry needs to address is the severe cost burden put on renters as they face annual rent increases ranging from 2-5%. There are housing alternatives out there and we as an industry need to do a better job educating people about the very real fact that mortgage credit is available and very reasonable. With only a 3.5% down payment, and as low as a 580 FICO score with a debt-to-income ration as high as 50% you can buy a home using a FHA/VA mortgage. In many cases, renters aren’t aware of how much mortgage credit is open to help them pursue the American Dream, and instead are absorbing higher annual housing costs, which can be a difficult cycle to break out of for many young consumers.” – Ivy Zelman

The Pending Price Index

Last month the STAT mathematical model projected a median sales price for October of $285,000. The October reported median was $285,000. Looking ahead to November, the ARMLS Pending Price Index anticipates the median sales price will decrease, projecting a median sales price of $282,868. It’s a common seasonal occurrence for the median sales price to wobble through the last half of the year.

We begin November with 5,934 pending contracts; 3,471 UCB listings and 545 CCBS giving us a total of 9,950 residential listings practically under contract. This compares to 8,307 of the same type of listings one year ago. At the beginning of November, the “pending” contracts are 19.8% higher than last year. There were 19 business days in November of 2018 and 18 this year. ARMLS reported 6,515 sales in November of 2018. We expect sales volume will be higher this year in the 7,100 range


Pretty cool read on how things are affecting us out here... In short, I think living in Phoenix is a win across the board... with us being between the 5th & 6th largest city in the country, our prices are incredibly affordable with super low taxes as well.

Ironically... here are two similar pics... one from the SF bay area and another from our Tempe Town Lake area taken by a good friend of mine... hahah! :)

San Francisco

Tempe Town Lake, Phoenix (super cool to see if you've never been)

I'm happy that I've lived my whole life here in the PHX valley to fully grasp the changes, hell, have also participated in it as well. The real estate topic can be a stressful and confusing one... If you have questions about it and need a safe place to ask questions with no expectation, please hit Chas or I up, we'd be grateful to heartfully share some perspective with you.

Until next time friend, have a grateful Friday! :)

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