I haven’t seen any other articles about this yet, but the counter-intuitive conclusive message, at least now, seems to be getting clear: Global and national bad news, at least in Phoenix, Arizona, means home values continue spiking upward.

Some history:

Pricewise, in August of 2011, based on the Monthly Average Sales Price Per Square Foot, (PSF) the Phoenix Metro residential real estate market hit rock bottom – $79.00 PSF.  This was a time which local veteran real state agents would just as soon forget. Foreclosures, Short Sales, abandoned homes, many displaced families, it was a nightmare.

But then, the market turned. Investors began buying homes traditionally and the through the foreclosure market, fixing and flipping, or fixing and renting. Gradually, neighborhoods began to change – for the better. Between that August 2011 bottom and February of 2020, the PSF rose to $185. This was a $106 PSF rise in 9 years, or $12.00 PSF per year average. If you had a 2000 SqFt home, your home appreciated $24,000 per year. Wow, a great time to own a home.

In February of 2020, the Covid 19 reality began hitting home. The local market screeched to a halt. In two months, the PSF dropped $7.00. Listing inventory rose by over 30% in one month! At this rate we would be soon seeing a return to a huge inventory of homes for sale. The pandemic increased intensity and hundreds of thousands of Americans were dying, not to mention the millions world-wide. The great and healthy 9-year real estate ride we homeowners were enjoying, was ending – at least that’s what we “experts” thought.

The great and healthy 9-year real estate ride we were all enjoying, was ending – at least that’s what we “experts” thought.

But then, inexplicably, unexplainably, incredulously, the market changed – again. We went from $180 PSF in May of 2020 to $296 in March of 2022 – in less than two years! That’s $116 PSF, or more than $58 PSF per year! That 2,000 SqFt home has now increased over $116,000 each of the last two years.

That was Covid-19. As this terrible pandemic has been winding down, we have a new war in the world with Russia and Ukraine spiraling up. It has World War potential. Oil, the still major global currency, has spiked, bringing with it inflation not seen in our country since the 80’s. Mortgage rates are also rising, now over 4%.

Are these new geo-political events halting the rise of local real estate values? No! Incredibly, prices are continuing to rise at a greater rate as is now being reported by the Cromford Report, the most accurate source of real estate statistical reporting in Arizona.

So here’s the scoop:

Per Cromford, last month, on February 15th, the closed sales PSF for the Phoenix Metro area for all types, namely single family detached, condo/townhome, etc., was $277. On March 15th, the closed sales PSF was $290 – an increase of 4.5% – in one month. That used to be Phoenix’s annual long term appreciation rate!

I’m not through. As of March 15th, the current average Pending Sales PSF is at $296. Based on current Pending PSF, Cromford is projecting a 4.4% rise for April 15th. If this happens, prices will have risen 9% in just 2 months, or an annual rate of 54%!

My conclusion? It seems simple enough. In the storms of life, people gravitate to what is solid and real. And recently at least, it seems like folks aren’t letting go.