Every square in this rainbow slide (not the one on the left, though that does look like fun. I mean every square in the image below) represents a month—January, February, March—all going up.
This covers central phoenix and downtown zip codes, historic and older neighborhoods. One vertical stack of those boxes adds up to one year. See how we’ve dropped quite precipitously: from 7,500 (in 2010) to 5,800 (March, 2013). In 2008 to 2010 a lot of those were short sales and foreclosures. You can shrink inventory, but the demand is still there and what happens? The price goes up.
Same three-month moving average
In this next slide is the average of all three months going back in time. In this way you keep from getting a bunch of blips that aren’t really accurate. See in those downtown zip codes how we’ve gone from $117 in September 2012 to now at $144 per square foot. Let’s look at year to year. March 2012: $105 to $144. That’s a big jump. Now the three month moving average is going to be more extreme than 12-months, because we’re averaging prices today and 12 months ago. The line is smoother and more conservative.
See from March 2012 it went from $96 to $149 per square foot. This $123 represents the average price for this day and the three months before. So you’re seeing that upward trend. Now, in downtown Scottsdale, we’re starting at higher prices.
Follow me on this:
In March 2004—in the recent comparisons slide, below—the monthly average price per square foot was $115. By the end of 2004 it was $131, a 16% increase. In March 2013, it was at $114, with very similar conditions. We started in January 2013 at $108.
Do we think the price can get to a similar 16% increase point by the end of 2013? This increase from $108 to $114/$116 is a very similar line. So for 2013, yes, I think we’re anywhere in a 16% – 20% price increase, just like 2004. I think we could very easily see average prices by the end of this year, somewhere between $125 and $130.
Now let’s take that same 15% – 20% increase—seen here in this next slide of this more-conservative 12-month moving average price per square foot—and apply it county wide to only Phoenix and Scottsdale, keeping in mind the trend-line I talked about in this post.
Phoenix was on a 12-month moving average in March of this year, sitting at $129 price per square foot (for those same zip codes). If you apply that same 15% – 20% increase, you’re looking at $140 – $146 by the end of this year. Apply that same 15% – 20% increase to the Scottsdale area, starting at $156 for the 12-month moving average, you’re looking at $170 to $175 by year’s end.
I think it’s very reasonable to say that we’re going to be there by the end of 2013.
Let’s compare visually
This here, in this next slide/image is for the whole county and is just by way of an illustration. 2004 (the blue line) and 2012 (the purple line) looked a lot the same in terms of path upward. At the end of March, we were about to surpass the same place we were in 2004.
Attention. Attention. Here ye the Town Criers.
Every few weeks, it seems, we hear a lot in the news about how they’re breaking new ground and there is all these new developments. Each one of those dots in the chart represents a month. In the month of Jan, Feb 2007 we built 4,000 houses. Over the course of over 2006, we built something like 60,000 homes. It was insane. They were crappy, throw-‘em-up houses. And now the news loves to proclaim:
Look! We’re building again!
But the number is tiny. It’s about 250 – 300 homes.
This is important to Central Phoenix for a couple reasons: These new builds are out in the fringes of Phoenix, so you’re not adding to central Phoenix inventory. Also, they’d have to build a lot more of these homes on the fringes for it to have any impact on prices in central Phoenix.
I don’t want to list ‘cause it’s going to be worth so much more a year from now.
But what happens if everyone holds off from selling? People will stop looking and prices go up.
Urban Density: Take away
- Investors –If you want to invest in something, get your mind around the fact that you’re more likely to hold it than flip it and get a better price for it; because the margin’s not there or you’re not going to get cash flow because you paid so much for that thing to begin with and nobody’s going to pay that much rent.
- Sellers –Watch for possible price plateau during the summer. With these price increases, don’t just think I’m gonna hold a year to sell and get this higher price, that’s not necessarily so. Also, with these price increases, people who are thinking this, don’t be so certain, because either people stop buying, or people are prices out of the market, or a lot more people say, “Look the prices are there, go, go, go!” I don’t think you can be that confident for a year or even 9 months from now.
- Urban Cores – are in need of urban infill. Detached residential and condos are coming in the burbs, but we need more rooftops centrally.
- Prices – They’re not necessarily a result of heavy demand, because there’s no inventory coming up the way we thought it would.
Be ye Investor, Seller, Buyer, or Town Crier, give me a call at 602-456-9388 or email me at email@example.com. I’ll get it done.
[slide image: Trish_Gee88]