When my family relocated to the Valley in 1994, it was a hot new-home sales market. North Scottsdale in particular was building incredible communities such as Grayhawk, McDowell Mountain Ranch, Scottsdale Mountain, Scottsdale Ranch ad infinitum. These brand new communities also provided top notch amenities, and certainly qualified as move-in ready at the time.

Fast forward 20 years. The communities are still a huge draw, but the new home newness has worn off. These upscale homeowners have discovered that roofs leak, heating and A/C units fail and need replacement, hot water heaters were probably replaced 2-3 times, and exteriors need attention/painting, again.  In short, they are no longer “move-in ready.”

And that’s just the outside.

Inside, that wonderful Corian hard surface countertop is still in great shape, just not what HGTV is serving up in 2016. Slab Granite is still popular, but 10 year old granite counters look like, well, 10 year old granite counters. Quartz (engineered stone) and newer designed slab granite are the new popularity winner. Even the wonderful Travertine tile that was so “in” ten years ago is now showing its age susceptibility. Hardwood (always in), and wood-design tiled floors are the new (old) kids on the block. Here’s a good website to check out:                      http://homerenovations.about.com/

It’s no accident that flippers are again starting to experience a lot of success in the Phoenix Metro real estate market. They are providing a finished product much in demand, especially with the rise and success of HGTV cable TV programs, such as “Love it or List It,” “Fixer Upper” and “Property Brothers” among others.

“Local sellers are taking quite the hit on price if they’re not updated, and if the updating was ten years ago, that’s ancient, design-wise. Buyers want new and now…”

Local sellers are taking quite the hit on price if they’re not move-in ready, and if the updating was ten years ago, that’s ancient, design-wise. Buyers want new and now, which is a big reason why new home sales are taking off again in the valley. Though many buyers would love to remodel new, very few buyers have the additional cash required to accomplish that expensive feat. In the financing heydays of not that long ago, but before the crash, banks were so happy when you closed on your home they gave you a $50,000 line of credit at closing which you didn’t even have to spend on your home. Hey, new car, vacations, you name it. Spend it. Well, no more.

For someone who has the financial resources, there are very good buying opportunities availing themselves right now, because these outdated but well located homes are not getting decent offers, if any at all. They’re lagging on the market if not priced aggressively. Prices for homes over $500,000 are slipping.

It’s now apparent that we are in a difficult market for homes that are not “move-in ready.” What’s an owner to do if they’re thinking of selling? Here are some options:

1)     Price it aggressively

2)     Rent it out if you’re relocating

3)     Stay, fix it up and enjoy it

4)     Stay, don’t fix it up and enjoy it

On the positive flip side, if your home is “move in ready” or fairly close to it, you will do well. Best neighborhood price, shorter market time.