Monday, July 2, 2012

Area's home market hot -

Javier Vidana is only 19. But with his investor father's cash, he was ready to make an offer on a three-bedroom, 2½ bath home in Peoria on Thursday.

"I love it already," said Vidana, who rents a room in a Phoenix house. "I don't want to be living in a little room anymore."

His real-estate agent, Jesse Abarca, said Vidana and his father will have to be ready to make a solid cash offer literally the hour the house hits the market. Even then, they could get outbid.

"The game is to get an offer in as soon as possible to avoid the other bidders," said Abarca, who works for Re/Max Professionals in Glendale.

For real-estate agents, homebuyers and especially homesellers, the West Valley is burning up, especially for homes less than $150,000.

"The West Valley is really, really a hot market," said Chris Heagerty, director of the Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service Inc.

That heat is strongest in the market for homes of $100,000 to $150,000, forcing new buyers to move to higher ranges.

The sellers of the small, empty house Vidana has his eye on are aiming it at the hottest part of the investor's market -- homes from $110,000 to $130,000.

Distressed properties, those houses owned by people facing foreclosure or short sales, still make up the bulk of sales. But ARMLS statistics show they have decreased in metro Phoenix to about 43 percent in May. That's a drop compared with their high-water mark in September 2010, when distressed properties made up 74 percent of homes sold.

An equally significant number is the ratio of short sales -- in which a home sells for less than is owed on its mortgage -- to foreclosure. ARMLS statistics show that metro Phoenix had 2,245 short sales in May compared with 1,423 foreclosures. Short sales increased that month by 5.5 percent over April figures, while foreclosures decreased by 1.9 percent.

By Lesley Wright, The Republic| Jun 16, 2012

Area's home market hot -

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