Friday, April 20, 2012

Why Not?

If you have survived the Great Recession with some cash to spare, and you don't own a house in Tucson, I have two words for you: Why Not?

Once again, Tucson is at the top of the list of best places to invest in real estate. This time, it's Forbes Magazine singing the praises of our Sweet Desert Home.

If you want to buy low, foreclosure-riddled Tucson, Ariz., may be just the place. It ranks No. 1 on this list.

Home prices in the Old Pueblo are down more than 45% from their peak, according to the Fiserv Case-Shiller index and the February median list price for a home headed to market was $170,000, about 3% higher than it was this time last year, according to The number of REOs (bank-owned homes) for sale is down 8% from February of 2011 and the number of foreclosures scheduled for sale has dropped 40%. Sales have also picked up, decreasing inventory levels. Single-family houses and condos are selling 12% faster than they were a year ago, averaging 86 days on the market (the national average is 111). The Tucson Association of Realtors reports that the total number of sales were up 16% in February from the same month a year ago.

“In the case of Tucson, you are looking at foreclosures dropping back quite a bit coupled with a stable employment market,” says Berkowitz. The area has a 7.8% unemployment rate, a tad lower than the national average of 8.2%, helped by the presence of sizable employers in the recession-resistant education and government sectors, including the University of Arizona, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base and the U.S. Army Intelligence Center. All of this suggests Tucson’s housing market may be bottoming.

This is just what I said when I posted the March Residential Sales Statistics, except I didn't know our unemployment rate is lower than the national average.

The rest of the Forbes article is here.

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