AP NEWS

Havasu housing market tightens

July 30, 2018

Lake Havasu City is a seller’s market. Real estate agents say an unusually low inventory of single-family homes coupled with high demand has made it difficult for buyers.

According to Chad Nelson, owner of the A Team at Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, there are currently 280 homes on the market, which he said is about half the norm. He added that approximately 130 homes are sold in Havasu each month, meaning there are roughly two months left of inventory.

New homes under construction may soon add some relief. The Villas, part of the second phase of the Havasu Foothills project, is slated to add 43 new homes to the market on Wednesday.

“It’s been very difficult for anyone looking to buy in the Lake Havasu real estate market, specifically over the past 30 to 60 days,” said Eric Gedalje of The Janecek & Gedalje Real Estate Groups, which represent The Villas. “... I don’t want to say it’s becoming impossible but the houses hit the market and there are multiple offers within days so we’re just excited to help balance out the market by adding more inventory and giving more buyers out there a fighting chance to live in Lake Havasu.”

The Havasu Foothills project, located atop Cherry Tree Boulevard, is anticipated to bring a little more than 180 houses to the city once complete. With two separate prices available for each of the development’s three home models, the Spanish-style homes will range between $379,000 and $498,900, according to Gedalje.

While other developments have no immediate plans to list any homes for sale, developers anticipate doing so later this year.

The Arroyos – also part of the second phase of the Havasu Foothills project – will add another 127 homes once complete, with 27 in the first phase, according to Steve Judd. Prices of the homes will range between $109,000 and $149,000 for three different home models with no restrictions on the selection of builders, he added.

Located on the south side of town, the Havasu Riviera resort community will bring between 600 and 650 single-family homes to Havasu over a five year period, according to Mychal Gorden, CEO of Desert Land Group. The first phase – which is the first of eight planned neighborhoods – is currently being developed and will consist of 76 homes, a hotel and a commercial site when complete. The next two neighborhoods, which could also hit the market later this year and into next year, will total 150 single-family homes.

“Part of what leads to a very low inventory level like now is after the downturn in the economy (the recession), obviously there wasn’t development for a long time, it’s kind of a typical process, a typical wave, development doesn’t happen during the downturn,” said Gorden. “And as we get going with projects like the Foothills and Riviera and all the other stuff that’s happening around town, it’d be nice if that inventory was out there sooner, that new supply tends to kind of lag demand so it’s coming and hopefully just in time to kind of start to fill that void in inventory that we’re seeing in the market

Based on the number of building permits issued within a year, inventory of vacant single-family home lots is also said to be depleting.

Luke Still, chief financial officer of Desert Land Group and a general certified appraiser, estimates that of the almost 30,000 lots originally developed by Robert McCulloch, there are around 1,200 to 1,500 lots available in Havasu, meaning the city would run out of inventory at its current level of building within three to four years, he said.

With new single-family home developments – such as the Havasu Foothills and Riviera, among others – he estimates that there will be about 2,700 to 3,000 lots available over a seven to 10 year period.

Still said there are currently 400 home sites built in Havasu per year. According to city building report dated May 2018, 342 single-family residential building permits were issued for the 2017-2018 fiscal year, which ended June 30.

He added that even a one percent population increase could dramatically change the numbers and “we’ll have no inventory left really quickly.”

“Well I don’t know that there’s very many desert communities that have more water allocation than they have land availability, it’s a really unique problem that we have and it’s a good problem to have for people that already own here because supply and demand, historically when it gets low like that prices will tend to increase faster and faster, which does create a problem in that affordability of housing becomes a more difficult thing,” said Still. “I think what we’ll see is more development on the outskirts of town on some of the few simple stuff that remains in the county and we’ll have to see some more affordable housing come along in that aspect…the long-term solution is for the Arizona State Trust Land to be released, and there is some on the north side that’s almost 400 acres which would create maybe another 1,000 to 1,200 housing sites but that’s probably, even if somebody started that process today, seven years away.”

By CHELSEA CURTIS ccurtis@havasunews.com

Lake Havasu City is a seller’s market. Real estate agents say an unusually low inventory of single-family homes coupled with high demand has made it difficult for buyers.According to Chad Nelson, owner of the A Team at Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, there are currently 280 homes on the market, which he said is about half the norm. He added that approximately 130 homes are sold in Havasu each month, meaning there are roughly two months left of inventory. New homes under construction may soon add some relief. The Villas, part of the second phase of the Havasu Foothills project, is slated to add 43 new homes to the market on Wednesday. “It’s been very difficult for anyone looking to buy in the Lake Havasu real estate market, specifically over the past 30 to 60 days,” said Eric Gedalje of The Janecek & Gedalje Real Estate Groups, which represent The Villas. “... I don’t want to say it’s becoming impossible but the houses hit the market and there are multiple offers within days so we’re just excited to help balance out the market by adding more inventory and giving more buyers out there a fighting chance to live in Lake Havasu.”The Havasu Foothills project, located atop Cherry Tree Boulevard, is anticipated to bring a little more than 180 houses to the city once complete. With two separate prices available for each of the development’s three home models, the Spanish-style homes will range between $379,000 and $498,900, according to Gedalje. While other developments have no immediate plans to list any homes for sale, developers anticipate doing so later this year.The Arroyos – also part of the second phase of the Havasu Foothills project – will add another 127 homes once complete, with 27 in the first phase, according to Steve Judd. Prices of the homes will range between $109,000 and $149,000 for three different home models with no restrictions on the selection of builders, he added. Located on the south side of town, the Havasu Riviera resort community will bring between 600 and 650 single-family homes to Havasu over a five year period, according to Mychal Gorden, CEO of Desert Land Group. The first phase – which is the first of eight planned neighborhoods – is currently being developed and will consist of 76 homes, a hotel and a commercial site when complete. The next two neighborhoods, which could also hit the market later this year and into next year, will total 150 single-family homes. “Part of what leads to a very low inventory level like now is after the downturn in the economy (the recession), obviously there wasn’t development for a long time, it’s kind of a typical process, a typical wave, development doesn’t happen during the downturn,” said Gorden. “And as we get going with projects like the Foothills and Riviera and all the other stuff that’s happening around town, it’d be nice if that inventory was out there sooner, that new supply tends to kind of lag demand so it’s coming and hopefully just in time to kind of start to fill that void in inventory that we’re seeing in the marketBased on the number of building permits issued within a year, inventory of vacant single-family home lots is also said to be depleting. Luke Still, chief financial officer of Desert Land Group and a general certified appraiser, estimates that of the almost 30,000 lots originally developed by Robert McCulloch, there are around 1,200 to 1,500 lots available in Havasu, meaning the city would run out of inventory at its current level of building within three to four years, he said. With new single-family home developments – such as the Havasu Foothills and Riviera, among others – he estimates that there will be about 2,700 to 3,000 lots available over a seven to 10 year period. Still said there are currently 400 home sites built in Havasu per year. According to city building report dated May 2018, 342 single-family residential building permits were issued for the 2017-2018 fiscal year, which ended June 30. He added that even a one percent population increase could dramatically change the numbers and “we’ll have no inventory left really quickly.”“Well I don’t know that there’s very many desert communities that have more water allocation than they have land availability, it’s a really unique problem that we have and it’s a good problem to have for people that already own here because supply and demand, historically when it gets low like that prices will tend to increase faster and faster, which does create a problem in that affordability of housing becomes a more difficult thing,” said Still. “I think what we’ll see is more development on the outskirts of town on some of the few simple stuff that remains in the county and we’ll have to see some more affordable housing come along in that aspect…the long-term solution is for the Arizona State Trust Land to be released, and there is some on the north side that’s almost 400 acres which would create maybe another 1,000 to 1,200 housing sites but that’s probably, even if somebody started that process today, seven years away.”

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