Tempe, Arizona: An Enticing Housing Market for Buyers and Sellers

The promise of sunshine nearly every day of the year is pretty enticing, especially for those who spend countless winter days shoveling sidewalks, scraping windshields and spiking up their heating bills. In Tempe, Ariz., you can purchase property where the sun beckons almost every day and a pool—if you want one—glimmers right in your backyard.

To get a closer look at this unique desert market, we talked to Nick Bastian, a real estate agent at Realty Executives with 24 years’ experience with Tempe and the surrounding areas. Here, he shares some insight on the happenings with the local market.


The Tempe Housing Market Heats Up

After the Great Recession, progress in the Arizona job and housing markets was slow in comparison to other states, but recently the outlook became brighter in Maricopa County thanks to businesses that are breaking ground in the area. “State Farm’s bringing literally thousands of jobs and there’s a couple other major developments being built in the area that are going to total a couple hundred million dollars each when they’re done, easily,” Bastian says.

The Marina Heights development in Tempe’s 85281 zip code will house the insurance company which plans to hire 8,000 new employees when all is said and done. The development’s completion is scheduled for 2017. In 85281, you’ll also find Sun Devil Stadium, the Mill Avenue District and Tempe Beach Park, providing locals with heaps of shopping options, outdoor activities, sporting events, festivals and more, making it an ideal area for new residents—not just Arizona State University college students—to plant their roots.

To top it off, the Coyotes recently announced it will move to Tempe after the city of Glendale voided the hockey team’s lease. “That, I think, would be really cool for the area,” Bastian says. “It’s really close to ASU. In fact, it’s on land owned by ASU, so that could create even more jobs and demand in the area.”


Local Housing Trends

With the recent economic upturn, apartments in the 85281 area are popping up, primarily geared toward students and empty nesters. But there is plenty of inventory for buyers interested in single-family homes as well. “We haven’t seen any new construction of condos in any real numbers, so I think the existing condos they are going to see even more demand going forward,” Bastian says.

Just south of ASU along Warner Road, between McClintock and Rural, buyers get more options in terms of lot sizes, but there’s a price to pay. “That mile, that’s kind of the “Miracle Mile”—you might call it—of some the highest incomes in the state,” Bastian says. “The average household income in those neighborhoods is close to $150,000. And that’s a pretty high average for Arizona.” Houses there can cost well over $1 million.


Location, Location, Location

If you’re looking to buy a home in Tempe, it’s good to decipher what you’re looking for. If you want to be in the thick of it, the 85281 area could be your sweet spot. But if you’re looking for more of a suburban-type dwelling and have the cash to spend, the areas in and around “Miracle Mile” might cater to your tastes a bit more.

“[Buyers] just need to be prepared for the buying process and be realistic about the expectations,” Bastian says. Buyers should be mindful of their tastes and what type of lifestyle they want to lead, but buying a home is also a financial decisions and investment. So people need to understand what their financing options. “Once we know that,” Bastian says, “we can help guide them in that area.”


Staging Helps Sellers Sell

On the other side of the transaction, sellers in Tempe should heed their realtor’s advice as well. Be sure to look at comps in your area and make an educated decision of what a reasonable selling price would be. Your realtor can help you to determine an appropriate number for the current Tempe housing market.

Yet, price isn’t the only thing buyers are lured by. When selling a home, Bastian says, “Clean goes a long way. Oftentimes, we have to have people get a storage locker because selling your house is a lot different than living in your house. You have to separate yourself from that property as being your home, so you need to prepare it to sell.”

Our Phoenix storage center can help get some things out of the way to ensure your home is staged perfectly for buyers. Our experienced, professional storage handlers will come to you for your items, giving you more time to tidy up and make a good impression.


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