Reid Sossong Tucson, AZ Real Estate: Newsletter

Weekly Tucson, Arizona Real Estate Newsletter for 2011

Original Content by Reid Sossong, RPA, Broker
Call me at 520-977-8026

January 21, 2012 Homes, homes, and more homes in Tucson golf property communities. It's that time of year when I update my golf membership cost spreadsheet. I've already started and so far it looks like the country clubs and membership initiation fees are very flexible. It appears that many of the clubs offer a variety of memberships. I'll update you as I get more information, and the new spreadsheet will be posted on realestatetucson.com when finished. Heritage Highlands, located in the far northwest area of Tucson, has one of the best resale home markets in Tucson. People can see the value in the homes, clubhouse, and the excellent golf course. The course is a friendly desert style golf, with the 13th hole being the most challenging. It's a blind up hill tee shot with a blind 2nd shot into the green " ouch."  Please email with any Tucson real estate, or golf questions.

January 13th, 2012 The membership at The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain Golf Club is very exclusive, and for a short time, the developer of The Residences is offering an exclusive charter membership with the purchase of a home, in the Residences. The select charter members will receive a complimentary golf membership, discount on their homesite and other great benefits, email Reid Sossong at [email protected]. The remaining 15 charter memberships won't last!!

January 7th, 2012 Pima County shows a decrease in foreclosures every year since the peak in 2009. In 2009 the number of foreclosures showed 12,184, with 2010 at 11,663. Then for last year 2011 the number dropped nicely to 9,433. This is all positive, along with a decreasing inventory of property in the tar mls below 5,000. Also, 2012 is the end of the resets for the three and five year adjustable loans that have been a major factor in the foreclosures. If you have any input please let me know, I'd love to hear from you.

December 30th, 2011 I will be updating my Tucson golf fee spreadsheet next year, and will let you know when I have it up on my website. I can hardly wait for the new year to start and think it will be better in many way's compared to 2011. Have a happy new year!!!!! 

September 23rd, 2011 Northwest Tucson is home to the most active country club, El Conquistador. All the facilities are used, and the country club features two 18 hole golf courses. There are 23 subdivisions that surround the golf courses. The housing area is called Canada Hills, with  prices in the low $100.00 per square foot. If your active this is the country club. Email me let's talk real estate and golf. Let me know if you want hot listings emailed to you. 

September 16th, 2011 Are you planning a reconnaissance trip to Tucson? Let me send you current listings and hot new ones as they come on the market. Just fill out my questionnaire form off my home page, or email your thoughts and questions.

Don't forget if you are planning a golf trip to Tucson the end of September, beginning of October that is when many of the golf Courses here in Tucson overseed.

August 30th, 2011 According to Case-Schiller housing prices went up in the April-June quarter 3.6%. This is a good sign.

August 20th, 2011 The summer rains have been a great this year in Tucson, Arizona and the golf courses show it. The rough at many of the clubs is tall and thick Bermuda. The bent grass green are fun when they are wet, because high balls stick like darts to a dart board. The 10 year treasury note this week had people piling in to the safe haven which pushed the yield below the 2% mark. The 10 year is used to bench mark the interest rates and when the demand goes up the yield comes down. That's why the mortgages rates dropped this week.

August 12th, 2011 The summer rains here in Tucson are almost over and the golf courses love the water, especially the Bermuda rough. The July stats are in my hands from the MLS and the numbers for Tucson are solid. The housing inventory is about 5,100, down from the peak of over 9,000. The average sales price for a home in Tucson is $173,000.00. A very important number is the unit sales, and for Tucson, Arizona it's holding around the 1100 mark. Email me with questions you have or topics you want to hear about.

July 28th, 2011 Pima county is home to Tucson and surrounding area's. Again, the local paper reports that Tanque Verde, Vail, and Catalina Foothills are the highest rated school districts in Pima county. Why does this matter? You might say, my kids are grown and I play golf every day, who cares. Well, one of the main reason's is it helps property values remain solid. Remember, I can do property searches for you in the MLS by school districts and schools. Are you looking for a real estate broker here in Tucson that is knowledgeable, and easy to work with? Then, call, or email me with your thoughts and questions.

July 15th, 2011 La Paloma country club here in Tucson, Arizona is located in an ideal part of north Tucson. A first class country club features 27 hole Jack Nicklaus designed track. Homes in La Paloma country club range in price from the $200's to several million, or $175-$300 per square foot approximately. I recently wrote about Tucson's summer golf, but I like to mention it again, if you plan it right and play early or late in the day it's great!!! Rates are low and less player's.

July 8th, 2011 Sabino Springs in Tucson, Arizona is a golf community on Tucson's northeast side. The golf country club of Sabino Springs was built out by several developers; with home prices in the $200,000 to $750,000 range. The square footage prices are between $100 to $200 per square foot. These are great prices for the area. Ten properties have sold in the last six months with about 22 current listings. Send me your email and I'll send you listings from Sabino Springs, or any area of Tucson.

July 1st, 2011 Tucson Arizona has been hot and dry. For the golfer this means low fees, smart planning, and long drives. What do I mean by smart planning? A few summer tips are: Wear a hat, put sunscreen on, and take plenty of water with you. Then, plan when you play, examples: start early mornings, or late afternoons. The monsoons have arrived and usually roll in late afternoon, many times with no rain or 10 minutes of a down pour. The reason I mention this is the monsoon clouds really cool things off and make for a perfect summer round of golf. One caution is don't play when the lightning is out, most courses will stop play or warn you. If you have real estate or Tucson golf question please email me. Also, if you would like current listings sent to you and hot new ones as they come on the market let me know.

June 12th, 2011 The May Tucson Association of Realtors May statistics are out, with a few surprises. The listing inventory fell to 5800 homes. Also, the average sale price fell to $168,000. Then, the total units popped to 1250. Things are still bad for sellers, but improving. Capitulation, are we there yet?

June 3rd, 2011 Tucson, Arizona golf homes number one or best area would have on the list Canada Hills. The community is very upbeat and active. The clubhouse and two 18 hole courses are excellent in many ways. The reason I'd like to talk abut the are today is the fact that because of it's size I have always used the sales and current inventory for a barometer of the rest of the market. Right now the area show's 40 closed sales in the last 6 months, not bad at all. That would mean to sell off the current inventory of homes would take a little over four months. Historically, that's excellent. You won't hear this in the main stream news. The homes are priced in the 200-300's. One of Tucson's best kept secrets. Email, or call me with your questions, or plans to visit Tucson.

The summer heat is starting to show-up. That means swimming is in and the fairways will be dry and fast. Remember in Tucson's summer heat to put on sunscreen and drink plenty of water, and don't forget a hat. If your going to golf go early in the morning or in the evening.

May 26, 2011 Golf properties and golf homes in Tucson vary. First, consider the club and golf course and the price range of the homes. Many times people will find a home on the internet in a golf community or country club and like the home, but not the club, or the golf course. This is part of my job; helping you weed through all the variables and giving you a great buying experience and the home and area that you love. Call or email me with your thoughts.

May 6, 2011 In my travels to the various country clubs here in Tucson, Arizona, I'm finding the fees are changing rapidly and the menu of memberships is bigger at each country club. This is great, at the end of the day you the consumer is really benefiting. Housing prices are low, rates are low and yes property is still selling. If you are thinking of moving to Tucson and have question call or email me. 

April 29, 2011 Tucson country club homes for sale is showing about one home a month that sells, compared to 18 current homes for sale.  Tucson Country Club is ideally located in the heart of Tucson. Yet, when you enter Tucson Country Club you know that you have left Tucson and entered an area of mature trees and estate style homes. The Country Club is first class with an open country spread that gives that warm secure feel. Homes are selling between $100 and $200 a square foot. The equity full membership is $8,000 currently, and monthly dues of $522. Curious? Let me email you all the current listings.

April 15, 2011 Probably the highest sitting country club here in Tucson is Skyline Country Club, with awesome views of the city and mountains. That's how it got it's name. There are townhomes and single family residences available. An older country club the homes are older to new, and prices per square foot have a big swing from the low hundreds to several hundred dollars per square foot. There are several homes in the million dollar range that just went into escrow, with 6 others already closed in the last 6 months. I used to be a member here and the course is laid out on the side of a hill. The yardage is short, compared to the new country clubs. It is challenging, scenic, and has a beautiful clubhouse to end your round. The location of Skyline Country Club is close to anything you need and a straight shot into town.

April 1, 2011 Tucson's Sombrero Peak at the Pines (formerly The Links at Continental Ranch) has many amenities including a community pool, green belt,  walking paths, and natural desert wash. I'm researching the daily rates of The Quarry Pines Golf Club, and if they have memberships available. Their exciting new series of single and two-story  floor plans ranging from 1,660 to 2,666 square feet, with livable floor plans. They have six new designs that offer up to 6 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms. When I get additional information I'll let you know.

March 18, 2011 Many people, including some real estate agents, are confused over the terms pre-qualified and pre-approved for a mortgage, or deed of trust. I know the terms are being misused, and there is a huge difference between the two. The term pre-qualified means the buyer has talked to a loan officer and if everything the buyer said was true, then they should be qualified for the loan, maybe. Then there is pre-approved which means the buyer's job, income, and debts have been verified and all the information has been submitted to an underwriter who has the final say.  Now they have automated underwriting, which provides instant approval for the loan. What if you were in a sellers shoes which buyer would you want to work with, pre-qualified or pre-approved for the loan?

March 11, 2011 Tucson is home to Stone Canyon in Tucson, Arizona is one of the areas top country clubs and golf course. Stone Canyon is located in northwest Tucson, Stone Canyon country club features eye-popping homes in an exclusive must see location in Tucson. As a Realtor I know I was fortunate to be brokering real estate while the golf course was being built at Stone Canyon, in northwest Tucson. Showing lots in four wheel drives and seeing the big earth movers design the course, was truly awesome to see will the golf course was being built. The homes in Stone Canyon are selling in the $249-$281 a square foot range, that's low. Have questions? Just email me.

March 4, 2011  Tucson, Arizona the close of escrow  means when the deed has recorded at the recorders office. After the recording, the buyers receive the keys to the home. Years ago, people would go to closing at the title company, sign all the paper work and then get the keys that day at the escrow office. Currently, in Tucson, everyone signs several days before the close of escrow and recording.

Update on the World Match Play held here in Tucson last weekend. I took my son Scott out on Saturday and had a great time.The course was in perfect shape, the food was excellent, and we got to see Bubba Watson plant the ball way out there. It was a real positive experience, however, I miss the old Tucson Open at Tucson National Country Club. The Tucson Open had more players to watch, easier to walk, and a real home town feel.

February 25, 2011 Tucson, Arizona is the sunniest city in our country! It has more than 350 days of sunshine every year in Tucson. The mild winter temperatures are legendary, with high 60's during the day and low 40s at night time lows.
 
The Accenture Match Play has started here in Tucson, and it looks like it will be another great tournament. I plan on taking my son out on Saturday, so I'll update you next week.  The match play tournament is located in Dove Mountain, a master planned community in the northwest part of metro Tucson. Housing prices have been closing in the $100 to $300 per square foot range in Dove Mountain, with about 60 sales in the last 6 months. If you have questions please call me at 520-751-8686, or email me at [email protected] . Membership at the Gallery is now at a screaming low price of $40,000.00 for initiation. The Gallery golf club features 36 holes of unbelievable golf, and it's in a great location.

February 13, 2011 In Tucson the Association of Realtors Multiple listing Service statistics were just released for January, 2011. The following are a few high points to note: The total unit sales showed almost a 10% increase year over year, very positive. And, the average sales price showed $167,000.00, a 10% drop compared to December, also a 17% drop compared to a year ago, not too positive.  Then, the active listings jumped to over 7,100, not the right direction, plus the shadow listings.

Mark your calendars, on February 21st-27th, 2011 Tucson will host the Accenture World Match Play at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club in Dove Mountain. Be sure to note the weather, homes, and golf courses. If you have questions please email me at [email protected].

February 3, 2011 Sabino Springs is a manned guard gated community on Tucson's northeast side. The Arizona National golf club features a 18 hole course that weaves its way through Sabino Springs. Most homes are in the $140 to $170 per square foot range with a few outliers. This is a great course to play with a few elevated tee boxes that over look Tucson. This is a high end daily fee club that offers memberships as well. The area has a southwestern flare with mountain, golf course, and city views. The community has lots available in the 1 to 4 acre range priced in the $200s. Let me hook you up with the current listings and you'll receive the hot new ones as soon as they come on the market.

January 28, 2011 Golf course home sites, lots, or land can still be purchased here in Tucson, Arizona. Prices start at $100,000 and go up from there.  There haven't been a whole lot of sales for home sites in Tucson, Marana, or Oro Valley. Let me send you the current listings and hot new ones as they come on the market.

January 21, 2011 In Tucson, Arizona  luxury, distinctive home buyers are taking notice as The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain community is showing significant sales momentum starting the new year. There will be the first new homeowners that will move in this spring, four more home sales totaling over $4 million occurred in December, and ground has been broken on two new beautiful homes that will offer immediate move-in opportunities, once completed.

For the third year in a row, The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club will play host to the PGA Tour’s Accenture Match Play Championship, featuring the 64 best golfers on earth. This event will be here next month in Tucson, Arizona.

January 14, 2011 I was asked this week why some of the golf course's don't over-seed for the winter in Tucson. The answer I have always heard is that every three years you don't over-seed because the winter rye is hard on the bermuda grass and it needs time to heal. Many golfers play winter rules here in Tucson for this reason.
 
There are quite a few bank owned property's in Tucson screaming for a buyer. Also, from what I hear the banks have many more homes in the shadows that are not listed yet. I know first hand that the banks are tough to deal with. What do I mean? I'll give you a couple of examples: First, many banks use out of town appraisers and receive the wrong information, which leads to poor decision making. Also, the time frames can be long in countering back for all kinds of reasons. If you can put up with the banks routine you'll more than likely get a great deal. I love specializing and being a golf community, country club specialist or expert. Call me let's talk, or send me an email.
 
Mortgage interest rates are at 4.7% for a 30 year fixed.

December 30, 2010  Happy New Year and a big thank you to all my past clients!!! The weather in Tucson has been awesome and perfect for golf. I've been able to play some golf with my son Scott over the holiday's and I hope you have too.

December 24, 2010 Merry Christmas from Tucson, Arizona! I hope you have time to slip in some golf.

December 17, 2010 The November statistics for the Tucson Association of Realtors Multiple Listing Service have been released, so let me digest the numbers for you. First, let's talk about the average sale price of resale homes. Compared to last year the average price dropped just over 4% to $180,000.00. Second, the listing inventory has jumped to 7400 listings, that's 17% higher than the same month last year. Then, to round-out my top three favorite stat's is the units sold, and the number is down 20% compared to November, 2009. Not that you didn't know already, but this market is really beaten-up. Could this be the bottom?

December 10, 2010 Dorado Country Club is located at the start of northeast Tucson. Homes and townhomes are priced right in the $100.00 to $150.00 per square foot range. I can remember sitting an open house in 1979 in Dorado country club and thinking what a great location. Well, it still is and in fact it is even better. The golf course is an executive golf course, with most holes a par 3; Leave your driver at home. If you don't mind your home course an executive style par 3, then Dorado country club is worth looking at.

The 30 year mortgage interest rate popped this week and is hovering in the 4.6% range. It could go higher as the bond market sells off and investors put their money to work in other places.

December 3, 2010 I use First American Title Company as part of my real estate team here in Tucson, Arizona. They are excellent on every transaction, even the out of state, or out of the country closings.

Watch the information on the TAR MLS listings, please verify all information. This can be done during the inspection period. Remember, " caveat emptor."

November 23, 2010 Fall is prime time in Tucson for golf, and this week especially with the Thanksgiving holiday. Happy Thanksgiving and hope you mix in some golf with the long weekend.

November 18, 2010 The Residences at The Ritz- Carlton, Dove Mountain, just sent me a letter indicating they will do a sale-leaseback on three of their models. Included in the deal would be a membership to the country club. The models are priced in the $1.5 to $2.0 million range. I have done these with builders before with great success. Although, past performance is not a guarantee of future results. If you have questions call me.

November 11, 2010 Don't forget to thank a Vet today! The MLS for Tucson has sent me the October stats. Here are some of the high points. The average price for a Tucson home is at $177,000.00, that's lower then last at this time when it was $195,000.00. The inventory of homes for sales has been slowly moving higher, currently at 7400. Also, unit sales are down to 752. It sounds really bad, unless maybe you’re the one buying.

November 5, 2010: New homes for sale in Tucson just got easier. Let me know your price range, square footage range, and area of Tucson, if you know. I'll email you what is available.
 
Saddlebrooke, a active adult community in far far north Tucson, has a lot to offer. A whopping 79 holes of golf, several communities and 12 models to choose from. Resale homes range from $180,000.00 to $1,200,000.00. Contact me for more information at [email protected].

October 29, 2010 Many of the Tucson area golf courses have been overseeded with winter rye grass, and are open for play. However, it's cart path only. I played a course this week that wasn't bad, but they are letting the grass grow before they cut it. With the uncut grass on both the fairways and rough  made for an interesting day in trying to find your ball. The weather was great and in my opinion the fall is prime time in Tucson for golf. Also, the winter visitors haven't arrived yet.

October 24, 2010 Tucson country club news is positive, if you are a buyer. Many Tucson country club homes selling for under $200 a square foot, with some approaching the $100 a square foot mark. The homes in Tucson country club are older and most have been remodeled through out the years. Tucson has grown around Tucson Country Club, but when you drive past the guard shack into Tucson Country Club you get a warm special feeling, with mature trees and landscaping everywhere. The golf course is a tree lined traditional course and one of my favorite courses in Tucson.

October 15-10 Ventana Golf and Country Club in Tucson, Arizona is located in a mesquite wooded area with awesome mountain views. Located next to the Ventana Resort, they share and rotate the 36 holes of golf daily. Homes prices range from $300,000 to several million. The square footage prices range from $200 to $300 a square foot and up, not bad prices for a first class area. I was a member there in the eighties and was always impressed at the organization and management, they did and still appear to maintain the property like it just opened. Full membership is $48,000.00 initiation, and $715.00 a month. If you are planning a reconnaissance trip to Tucson let me show you Ventana and other areas, email me at [email protected]

October 8, 2010 The pool season in Tucson, Arizona is over, unless your pool is heated. I have checked into solar and been told that with a solar heater for the pool you could get a few weeks of additional swimming on each end of the season.
 
Overseeding is still under way at many golf courses here in Tucson. Some golf communities close 9 holes at a time, or golf clubs with two 18s may close one at a time. When you are addicted to golf this is a stressful time, however, when the winter rye grows, it is well worth the wait.

October 1, 2010 I'm updating my golf and country club fees for Tucson, and will be on line soon. You'll notice that most clubs have reduced their initiation fee substantially, and raised the monthly fees. Many of the clubs are well below their membership caps. Country clubs and resorts are hurting, in fact the local paper just reported that Starr Pass is having money problems as well as La Paloma. Now could be the time to take advantage of the low costs.

The Tucson MLS Statistics show an increase in the inventory level to just over 7,000 homes on the MLS.

9-16-10 The following letter was sent to me by The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton. Please call me for straight forward answers to your questions, email me at [email protected]

Dear Reid,

Our first homeowners have broken ground on their spectacular Amolillo Ranch House at The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain!

This news follows hot on the heels of our announcement last month that Dr. Ray Sidney, former Google software engineer and real estate entrepreneur, has joined developer David Mehl in retiring 100% of the debt on our Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course and The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club.

The community’s new residents are from Calgary, Alberta and have orientated their beautiful 3,250-square-foot winter home along holes 8 and 9 of the Wild Burro golf course to capture the phenomenal valley sunset views. The Amolillo Ranch House features disappearing window walls in the living room and dining areas, a magnificent fire pit and a breathtaking two-sided, negative edge pool. Construction will be completed in the spring.

Being the first has its benefits, one of which is selecting your favorite view! Our new Owners will be among only 25 homeowners to receive our Charter Membership discount which includes a golf membership, special real estate pricing, and other additional benefits. 

New prices for Amolillo single family homes start at $1.1 million; the Seven Saguaros single family homes start at $1.5 million and custom fairway homesites start at $590,000; Villas start at $925,000; and the Rockpoint Ridge custom homesites start at $605,000.  Early purchasers will also enjoy additional developer incentives that further enhance the value of their purchase. 

Reid Sossong Tucson Real Estate

Bookmark this page and return each week for new updates on the Tucson real estate market.

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9-10-10 Tucson golf course lots for sale. Yes, there are still lots available on the golf course. Prices range from about $150,000.00 to $2,000,000.00. Tucson National, Sabino Springs, The Gallery, Stone Canyon, and the retirement communities are all represented. Some are offering terms, such as: 10% down with 7% interest. If you were to buy and hold for a future build date, don't forget to budget for yearly property taxes and HOA fees. Remember, with land they aren't making anymore of it. Let me send you listings, please contact me at [email protected].

Tucson, Arizona has seen mortgage interest rates climb a little higher this week to just under 4.5%.

9-3-10 Want to find out your house value? There's a internet website ZILLOW.COM where you can get a good zestimate of the value. Recently, I have noticed that many homes are selling for 20 to 30% less than their zestimate. Please check the solds for your area to get a feel for the home values. 

Have a happy Labor Day!

8-29-10 Heritage Highlands, an active adult community northwest of Tucson, Arizona has golf property homes for sale at screaming low prices. Homes price range from approximately $190,000 to the low $400,000, and $120 to $175 a square foot. The hoa has a transfer fee of $300, and a capital contribution fee that varies depending on when the home was purchased, however the cap fee is $2,500 minus what was originally paid, so you might pay approximately $1500. These fees of course are all negotiable. All of these homes have unique lots with many that had a lot premium originally and the higher the price you can notice the upgrades as well. The golf course is an awesome desert style course that is maintained to the hilt. In my opinion Heritage Highlands is the best retirement community in Tucson, Arizona. Feel free to call or email with any questions you may have at [email protected].

8-21-10 In Tucson do you want to get the most from your utilities? People are overspending on their utility bills for no other reason than their own apathy. If you haven't already switched over to low-flow showerheads and toilets it's probably time think about it. Also, get into the habit of turning off lights when not in use. Did you know that most utility companies offer a free online energy audit? This way you can see exactly where you're wasting money at your house. When I find out more information on utilities savings I'll let you know.

8-15-10 A couple of older homes I was in this week had kitchens from the '60s and '70s. However, they looked great. The one had a new oven/stove and countertop with a thorough cleaning. The second had a new countertop and was super clean. The cost compared to gutting and replacing everything is small, but the result awesome. I hope they sell and the new homeowners enjoy the kitchens.

8-6-10 Tucson has enjoyed nice summer rains this year, with more to come. And, the golf courses have been soaking it up. Many of the courses that I have played have thick high rough; making it easy to lose your ball. Best times to play are still early morning and evenings. Don't forget if you are planning a golf trip to Tucson in late September, or early October that is the time most courses will be over seeding with winter rye. Want to look up homes on the Tucson MLS, then go to my home page and have fun. If you want listing sent to you and as they come on the market let me know.

7-22-10 The Residences at the Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain have restructured their debt, and with that have adjusted the prices for the lots and homes. In this economic environment even the Ritz has had to make some adjustments. If you want more information please email me at [email protected]
 
The Realtors will be updating a few of the forms soon. I'll keep you updated.

7-16-10 The IRI Golf Group has just purchased The Golf Club at Vistoso in Tucson. The Golf Club at Vistoso had been in bankruptcy, so it appears IRI got a good deal. IRI owns several golf courses in Tucson and the surrounding areas. It's a great golf course that has a great new owner. It will be interesting to see what type of membership structure they come up with. In the past it was hard to sell homes around the golf course because it strictly a high daily fee club. Let's wish them the best and see what happens.

7-9-10 Look-up property on the Tucson MLS. Go to my homepage on the upper right side and check out the new public access. Lots of new features: Mapping, email, more photos, and so much more. Let me know what you think, or have questions. If you want hot new listings as they come on the market I can hook you up to receive them automatically.

The summer rains are coming soon in the late afternoons. This is a great time to play golf in Tucson; Cloudy and cooler weather and play into the evening.

7-2-10  Hope you have a nice Independence Day weekend. This weekend many clubs have huge events, from golf to fire works, here in Tucson. Check their sites out for details.

6-25-10 National new home sales dropped last month to lowest level since they have been tracking the information. Is this really bad news? People bought the new homes, and the builders sold the new homes. So,  where is bad news? Maybe fear, or in some cases people can't sell their home to move to another home. Without a doubt tough decisions have to be made, but to the people buying the new homes are getting low rates, and new homes at a low price with builder incentives.

Are you looking for a excellent home inspector? Call Harris Breit at Affordable home inspections 520-298-5677, or any ASHI member.

Jumbo mortgages are available, now that there is a secondary market to buy them, that's positive.

I spoke to several lenders this week and the jumbo loan market is back, and rates on jumbo loans for a 30 fixed, good credit, and 20% down is in the 5.25% range. If you need names of local lenders just email me and I'll send you a few. 

6-18-10 The US Open is heading into the weekend. I don't know if you have a favorite, but mine is Ernie Els, currently in 2nd place. It should be a great tournament at Pebble Beach, if it doesn't rain.

How do you play summer golf in Tucson? Start at 5:15am when the weather is cool. If you go in the heat of the day be prepared with plenty of water, a good hat, and sunscreen etc.

6-11-10 The Gallery Golf country club in Dove Mountain, has a small subdivision next to it called The Gallery Cottages. The Gallery Cottages range from 2200 square feet to 2500 square feet in size at just over $300.00 a square foot. The lots are approximately half acre in size with awesome views of the mountains and golf course. Dove Mountain is also home to The Ritz, just down the street. Let me send you the existing homes available for sale, they are truly a great buy in a first class area.

6-5-10 Tucson is home to some of the hottest golf this summer, with some really smoking deals at some of the best tracks in Tucson. Many courses are already showing signs of the summer, with brown patches in the fairways and greens. The fairways and greens are hard and fast. The bent grass greens, however, when watered correctly are soft and if you hit a high shot into the green your ball will stick like a dart. If you play Tucson golf in the summer be sure to take plenty of water, wear sunscreen, and wear a full hat etc.

Tucson, Arizona has a great community in the northeast side of town called Sabino Springs, home of Arizona National Golf Club. The homes are reasonably priced now in the $150.00 to $210.00 a square foot area. Sabino Springs is still sought after for awesome views and ambiance. Let me send you home and land listings, just email me. 

5-24-10 Dove Mountain, home of The Gallery, The Ritz, and Heritage Highlands in Tucson, Arizona, or Marana, Arizona. Home prices range from $150,000.00 to $2,500,000.00. There are 81 holes of golf between the three, and many amenities.

Interest rates just dipped below 5% on the 30 year fixed. With home prices beaten-up, and rates at historic levels what are you waiting for? Start looking, and get pre-approved, so your ready when the time is right.

5-14-10 Currently, I'm in the process of hooking-up my IDX link so I can provide you with Tucson MLS listings. There will be several formats to search from, and I'll be updating you as everything falls in place. A big thanks to Bob Zucker, the publisher at Entertainment Magazine for all his help and input.

Want to know approximately what your home is worth? Check out zillow.com and trulia.com. Let me know what you thinks of each.

5-7-10 Considering Tucson, Arizona for your golf resort or country club home? Remember, you don't have to purchase in the country club or golf community at most places. In fact, many members live outside the golf community, or country club. Homes outside the golf resort are generally less per square foot, so you get more home for the buck. Another thought would be to locate between two country clubs and join both.

Don't forget Mother's day is Sunday. I know my club is putting on a nice spread for the occasion, as most will. The weather, in Tucson, should be perfect Sunday, except for a little wind, so if you play I hope you have a good round.

4-30-10  The following was taken from my newsletter that appeared 10 years ago. "Jumbo loans are currently $252,700.00 and up. Beginning January 1st, 2001 jumbo loans will be $275,000.00 and higher. Jumbo loans cost slightly more because the loans are not backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the giant government-sponsored loan purchasers." It's always interesting to look back at the real estate market and compare it to today's Tucson market. Even after the bust we just went through the home prices are still higher then 10 years ago. Some Country club fees have gone up and some have come done in price. I'll save that for another article. See you on the links.

4-16-10  In Tucson, Arizona if you are looking to build or greatly renovate a home on a golf property or put a home on a foothills lot and want to avoid the extra cost of two closings (construction loan and permanent loan), then consider a one time close construction loan, it will make your life easier. Most lenders have one application, one qualification process, one closing, and one set of closing costs which is clean cut. Then, interest-only payments during construction, the choice of adjustable rate or fixed mortgage products and the option of permanent loan rate protection available for up to 18 months, email me with questions..

4-9-10 The old rule of thumb for quickly figuring property taxes here in Tucson was 1% of the value of the home. Since property values rose and then dropped, that 1% rule can very.
 
Interest rates on the 30 year fixed conforming loan rose some this week. However, in the jumbo space the rates seem to be dropping, if you can find the right lender. Usually, the big banks would be the best place to start, since they can hold the paper easier and not worry about the secondary market.
 
Around tax time is when many of the snow birds leave Tucson and head back home, even though the weather is perfect. And this year is the same; I can tell the golf courses and country clubs have less people.

4-4-10 The Chinese drywall problem here in the U.S. is still a problem. The government agencies have announced that the problem is worse then they thought. The question now is who will be paying the bill to remove the Chinese drywall: The homeowner, builder, our government, or the Chinese government?

The golf here in Tucson is still in prime time and the weather is perfect for play. If you have questions about Tucson real estate or country clubs/golf communities, just email or call me.

3-18-10 Canada Hills in Tucson, Arizona comprises about 23 subdivisions, all surrounding the El Conquistador Country Club. Right now they are one of the hottest golf communities in Tuscon for resale's. The area is piling up the sales and for good reason. The prices, location, country club and golf courses are awesome. Best value for all round golf community. Call me for more information on this area or any other here in Tucson.

3-13-10 This week I took my first class for the new Multiple Listing Service "Flex" operating system; I'll have three more 3 hour classes on the new system to be proficient. At first I was apprehensive, but I'm warming up to the new system. I can still send you listings via email, and hook you up to  receive hot new homes as they come on the market. The public online MLS they aren't sure how much it will change. I'll keep you updated, and  the switch over isn't until May 1st.

3-5-10 When researching the golf communities here in Tucson this week for townhomes, I discovered a few things. First, Ventana and Tucson  Country Club have the best selection. With Ventana the higher priced area. Do you really get more? Yes, you do. Does that mean Tucson National Country Club is a dog? No, it's a great resort club with a good mix of homes. Then, the similarity between the two country clubs are each has 36 holes of golf with great restaurants and facilities.

2-26-10 Wow! There are really foreclosure and short sale properties in the golf communities here in Tucson, Arizona. Most of the foreclosure and short sale golf properties are in the northwest. Bottom line; there are some screaming good deals in Tucson, Arizona, if you don't mind jumping through hoops to land one. Email me at [email protected] and I'll hook you up to receive all the current listings and then I'll send you hot new ones as they surface on the market.

2-19-10 Tucson Arizona golf communities: Dove Mountain, Ventana, La Paloma and the Other Tucson Arizona golf communities are great to live in and play the club course. However, most of you know you can also buy a home outside the tucson arizona golf community. You can usually find lower prices or more home for the buck when the home is purchased outside the golf community in Tucson Arizona. The only golf communities that the home prices are hard to beat is in the Active Adult golf communities.

2-12-2010 Tucson, Arizona golf communities Tucson Country Club has homes listed between $500,000 and $2,000,000. Recent sales show four sales in the last six months, three of them bank owned. The Tucson Country Club has had some recent problems with women golfers not being allowed in the men's grill etc.. I sure hope they can work out the problems. Tucson country club is an equity club with a membership cost around $5,000, that is substantially less than numbers in the past.

Vistoso Golf Club in the northwest near Stone Canyon is in receivership. When I find out more I will let you know.

Tucson, Arizona will have The World Match Play here next week, February 15-21. The top 64 golfers in the world will be competing. Hopefully the weather will perfect, so be sure to watch.

2-5-10 Tucson, Arizona is home of the " World Match Play", coming to Tucson in a few weeks. Be sure to watch and see how nice our weather is this time of year.

1-22-10 Skyline Country Club here in Tucson, Arizona has memberships available for around $8,000.00 initiation fee  for a full membership. In Tucson there are only a few equity Country Clubs left, and Skyline Country Club is one of them. They have a new fitness facility. Located in north Tucson, most homes in Skyline Country Club have awesome city views. Homes are priced in the $300,000.00 to just over a million. Also, they have a few remaining lots. If you have questions please email me.

1-15-10 Arizona, Tucson is in prime time for golf. With the daily highs in the 70's makes for perfect golfing weather here in Tucson, Arizona. Most courses this fall and winter season in Arizona are in great shape, even with some of the clubs hurting because of the economy. I played a course recently that was in poor shape, can you guess which one?
 
Did you know that in Tucson, Arizona you can purchase a home in several golf communities in the $100 to $200 per square foot range. Yes, it is true. With home prices down and low interest rates it doesn't get any better than this.

1-8-10 In Arizona close of escrow usually means when the deed has recorded. This is when the buyers receive the keys to the property. In the old days, people would go to closing at the title company, sign all the paper work and then get the keys that day. Now everyone signs several days before the close of escrow. With the current way many people have a hard time waiting until the property closes to receive the keys. This can be especially true if there is a delay and the property closes after the date on the contract.

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