Scottsdale Real Estate Blog

Scottsdale real estate is always at the top of mind for The Kay-Grant Group as we assist dozens of individuals every month interested in finding or selling their next piece of Arizona real estate; whether that's looking for Old Town Scottsdale condos for sale, a downtown Phoenix loft for sale, or selling their house in northern Phoenix. The Kay-Grant Group are your premier Scottsdale Realtors.

This blog focuses on topics relevant to the Scottsdale and Phoenix metro real estate community as well as to those residing in The Valley that are interested in things to do around The Valley or the general going-ons in Phoenix and Scottsdale.

Who is The Kay-Grant Group?

The Kay-Grant Group is owned and managed by Geoff and Andrea Lilienfeld whom reside in Old Town Scottsdale.  We are a group of passionate real estate agents that specialize in Scottsdale, Phoenix, and all places that we call "The Valley."  We are passionate real estate professionals that bring a strong business acumen to the Phoenix and Scottsdale real estate world.

In addition to being Valley real estate agents, we are also real estate investors.  We own several investment properties in Scottsdale and love to help those that are seasoned real estate investors, or those just getting started, to search for great investment properties and calculate the numbers.  If you're just getting started we can help you understand how to target great investment opportunities.

When it comes to selling homes we are extremely aggressive and execute marketing plans for every home we list, often times including aggressive mailing campaigns to neighbors and other individuals whom the home might be of interest to.

Need a Good Real Estate Agent?

If you're interested in purchasing a home and would like to work with premier Scottsdale Realtors, please Contact Us and we can get you setup on a custom search.  If you have any interest in selling your home, or just want to know what it's worth, Contact Us and we'll perform a market valuation to let you know what we believe your house, condo, or townhouse could sell for. 

 

July 9, 2018

Rumored Optima Camelview Lawsuit

Informal Information on the Rumored Optima Camelview Lawsuit with the Developer

I would like to be very clear that we do not have any firsthand knowledge on the rumored legal proceedings between the Optima Camelview HOA and the developers of the Optima Camelview.  The information below is strictly based on hearsay and what we learned from being involved in several transactions from the Optima Camelview in Old Town Scottsdale.

Was the Optima Camelview Village involved in a lawsuit with the developer?

It is our understanding that the disagreements between the Optima Camelview and the developer (David Hovey) never actually resulted in any litigation.  The compensation for the alleged defects was amicably agreed upon between the Optima Camelview Home Owners' Association and the company that insured the Optima developers.

Was the value of the condos in the Optima Camelview effected by the proceedings?

During the time that there was concern of litigation at the Optima, the average price per square foot in the Optima was reduced.  While we can't say for sure the reason for this decline, there a few items that often lead to reduced condo sales prices while there is pending or active litigation in a condominium community in Arizona.  These reasons include:

  • Lending - When the HOA management office completes the condo questionnaire required in Arizona there is a point at which they must disclose there is pending litigation.  This can cause banks and mortgage brokers to not want to lend money while the outcome is determined
  • Fear of special assessments - When it is believed that there are defects within a condo community people are often concerned that those defects will need to be fixed via a special assessment
  • Self-fulfilling prophecy - Homeowners are often afraid that their property values are going to go down and as such decide to sell their condos.  This, of course, leads to reduced sales prices as the inventory is high.
  • Fear of the unknown - Potential buyers are generally scared of purchasing into anything that may result in them have any sort of role in litigation

How much was the Optima Camelview Lawsuit Settlement for?

The amount of the settlement was not disclosed by the Optima HOA as part of the agreement between the HOA and the insurance company was a non-disclosure agreement.

Home prices went up after the Optima Camelview's pending legal matters and then dipped again...

As can be expected, once word got out that all matters had been resolved and that the Optima now had a big chunk of money from the insurance company, the Optima property values increased.  What's more interesting, however, is that shortly after the renovations that the money was awarded to complete started.  Shortly thereafter we saw property values begin to decrease again.  At the time of this writing, we are still seeing this.  There are tons of renovations going on around the Optima (both repairs of defects as well as general upkeep) that seem to be scaring away some people.  

Optima Camelview Lawsuit Home Value Impact

Possibly a great time to buy at The Optima

To summarize the above:

  • The threat of litigation over defects lead to prices at the Optima Camelview to fall
  • The HOA and the developer's insurance company settled and The Optima got a big chunk of money
  • The HOA is now using that money to make the Optima even nicer and more updated
  • Because these projects are occurring prices are dropping again while things are "under construction"

Here's what the old hallways look like (about 25% have been remodeled so far)

Old Optima Hallyway

Here's what the new hallways look like once they're complete:

Residents have to live with a construction zone for a little while but it's well worth it!  While some of the hallway repairs were paid for by the settlement, some of it is simply a refresh.

Here's what the indoor pool looks like right now...eek.

Optima Indoor Pool Under Construction

But guess what?  It'll all be brand new when it's done!

You have to come to your own conclusion about how long before the Optima prices go back up

While we can't say for sure that properties will go back up, it is pretty reasonable to believe that it's likely that the Optima will be that much of a nicer place once all of these improvements are made.
Many of the improvements happening right now in the Optima are also due to things being 10 years old and the Optima just wanting to keep things looking good.  A great example of this is the hallway refreshes that are currently occurring.

What do you think about Optima Lawsuit stuff?  Comment below!

Want to learn more about the Optima or other properties in Phoenix / Scottsdale?  Call or text Andrea at 480-387-3990





 

Posted in Optima Camelview
July 9, 2018

Escape the Heat in Sedona

Summer Day Trip Getaways: Sedona

Whether you live in the Valley or are considering a move here, the intense heat of the summer can be a hindrance to enjoying the city from June-August. The great thing about living in Scottsdale or Phoenix is the proximity to higher elevation areas with milder temperatures and plenty of activities, both indoor and outdoor. Sedona, Arizona is one of our favorite day trip getaways, and we will share our reasons why.

A two-hour drive from downtown Phoenix or two and a half hours from Old Town Scottsdale, Sedona offers beautiful rock butte views, pine tree forests and a vibrant culture that visitors love to experience. Aside from the aesthetic beauty of Sedona, there is plenty to do, and with an average temperature that’s 15 degrees cooler than Phoenix, you won’t find yourself exhausted at day’s end.

Whether you’re by yourself, with a spouse or significant other, or bringing the whole family, there are several activities to enjoy during your day trip. Sedona is well known for its hiking trails, and with the cooler temperatures, you won’t feel pressed to finish before the sun gets too intense as you would in the Valley. Some favorite hiking trails in the area are West Fork Trail, Cathedral/Templeton Trail, and Fay Canyon Trail. Full of stunning red rock walls, flowing bodies of water (hard to find those in Phoenix), and beautiful forests, you’ll have a blast exploring these hikes solo or with a group.

For the couples looking for a great day trip destination, Sedona is home to some of the best wineries in all of Arizona. With its higher elevation and rich soil, northern Arizona is the perfect location for vineyards and making some incredible wine. In order to maximize your day trip we recommend taking a wine tasting tour, like those offered by Sedona Wine Adventures. This can save you the time and hassle of figuring out which wineries to visit. This way, a tour guide takes you around to some of the best in northern Arizona, and offers you the opportunity to visit your favorites again on your next day trip!

Unless you have a pressing need to return to Phoenix before it gets dark, we highly recommend staying to catch a view of the amazing night skies Sedona has to offer. The ability to see stars in Sedona is thanks to its designation as a Dark Sky Community, which it earned in 2014. Living in a big city like Phoenix, it’s easy to forget that there are countless stars that shine throughout the evening, and Sedona is a great location to experience those twinkles in the sky. There are options for stargazing tours in Sedona, but you could easily park in a dark area, look up, and enjoy the show.

The next time you’re feeling like the summer heat is too much, give a day trip to Sedona a try. We are certain you’ll love the weather, the scenery, and everything else in this incredible section of Arizona!

 

 

Posted in Exploring Arizona
July 7, 2018

Phoenix Museum of Art Restaurants

One of the coolest places you can visit in the Valley is the Phoenix Museum of Art. On a recent trip to the museum, we got to thinking about how cool and exciting life in the midtown Phoenix area can be. Down the block from the museum sits one of the architectural marvels in the state, the Chateau on Central. If you decide to live around this area, or plan on visiting this area, it is not only a great neighborhood for the arts, there is also some fantastic restaurants within walking distance to the museum. Here are our top three choices for dining around the Phoenix Museum of Art.

Oven+Vine

Opened in 1994, Oven+Vine features some of the best Italian fare, beer, and wine you’ll find in the Midtown district. Between their delectable flatbreads and pasta dishes, to their selection of wines ranging in location from Northern Arizona to Italy, not to mention its laidback, charming atmosphere, it’s tough not to love this amazing restaurant. A great place for lunch and dinner after exploring the arts around the area.

Hob Nobs Food and Spirits

Located on the block adjacent to the Phoenix Museum of Art is Hob Nobs, this is our favorite choice for an afternoon lunch with friends. The sandwiches and salads are amazing, as well as the cocktails. If the main menu is a little too intimidating for the young ones, they also offer a kid’s menu! If you didn’t see enough art at the museum, Hob Nobs also exhibits various art, all from local artists. This is even better than the museum since the art on display is for sale if you see something you love.

Clever Koi-Phoenix

Stylish, contemporary, unique, and not overly expensive, Clever Koi is an ideal local bistro for an evening after exploring the arts. Located near Crystal Point condos, this Pan-Asian style bistro has won several awards, including Best Ramen Shop, Best Happy Hour, and Best Cocktail Bar in Central Phoenix by Phoenix New Times, and it has earned every accolade it has received. Their Pad Thai is exquisite, as well as their steamed buns and duck curry. While they do have a great happy hour, the restaurant is best enjoyed at night in the ambiance of the dining room. A true treasure in Midtown Phoenix.

Exploring the Phoenix Museum of Art is just one of many places to enjoy in the Midtown area. When you visit one of the many incredible restaurants in the area, you allow the rest of your senses to marvel at the amazing culture and hospitality the residents of Phoenix are proud to share with every visitor and local.

 

June 11, 2018

Optima Camelview Village Scottsdale June '18 Market Update

Geoff Lilienfeld reviews the current Optima Camelview Village real estate market trends for June 2018.

If you would prefer to read the transcript, please see below:

Optima Camelivew Village Trends Analysis

We're going to take a look at the current market trends for the Optima Camelview in Old Town Scottsdale. What we see here, of course, we're looking back to the first quarter of 2014 through today. What we see here is definitely a downward trend in prices at the Optima Camelview. Let's look back here to very late 2016. In late 2016, the Optima Camelview was involved in a lawsuit with the developer. I should clarify that it never actually came to litigation. It was settled prior to any litigation. What happens here is that the price drops. We see the price going up after the settlement. Part of that is, of course, people just being uneasy, as well as sometimes that can cause an issue with writing mortgages.

Price Drops in Optima after Lawsuit Settlement work begins

We see the price go up, and it's kind of interesting what happens here. As they get the money from the developer, a whole bunch of construction starts up around the Optima Camelview. What we see is that the prices actually drop off, which is kind of funny, because essentially the prices are dropping, because so much construction is happening and the community is getting upgraded. But the prices are dropping off, because there's just noise, there's cranes around, all sorts of stuff like that, as well as the fact that a storm killed the generators, and so there are temporary generators sitting outside of the Optima. All things that are not really a big deal, but at the end of the day, there is just a reality that not everyone is okay with that.

We see these prices really drop off, which is not in line with what's happening in the rest of Old Town Scottsdale. That's pretty interesting, and in my personal opinion, this is actually creating an investment opportunity. Generally, luxury condos are not the best investment option, but in this particular scenario, I do believe that this is kind of an artificial dip and is a buying opportunity for someone looking for an investment. In fact, we purchased a condo just a couple months ago in here for this reason. It's pretty interesting how these prices are dropping. Like I said, I really think it makes an excellent investment opportunity at the Optima.

One other kind of interesting piece of information to look at is that up to today, which we're not even halfway through June yet. Today is June 9th of 2018. When we look at this, we've already sold 38 homes in 2018 in the Optima. With 38 condos having already sold, one would guess that we're on track to see a record year, in terms of the volume of condos being sold. There's definitely a lot of turnover right now. Clearly, there is people buying, which again, is always a good sign if you're interested in purchasing a condo, and want to make sure that you can sell it in the future and you're not stuck. You want to see that there's people out there buying.

Pretty interesting. I'd say overall, there's just a lot of activity happening right now in the Optima, and it's definitely an interesting community to keep an eye on. If you have any questions, want to know more about the Optima, the market here, or any other condos around Scottsdale, or any homes in Scottsdale in general, please feel free to reach out. You can call or text my wife Andrea. Her number is (480) 387-3990, or you can email her at andrea@kay-grant.com.

If you're interested in learning more about the Optima Camelview or Scottsdale Condos, please give Andrea Lilienfeld a call at (480)-387-3990.

Posted in Optima Camelview
May 4, 2018

4 Tips for Choosing the Best Realtor in Scottsdale

Planning a move to the Scottsdale area? Dreading the process of combing through the vast amounts of available real estate agents to hire to make sure that you find the perfect house or condo in Scottsdale, AZ?

Between the countless yard signs, billboards, online advertisements, direct-mail flyers, and door hangers, it can feel like an impossible task to know how to pick the agent who is best suited for your needs.

Preparing to buy a home can feel stressful as you weigh all your options. Choosing an agent who is communicative, accommodating, and industry-savvy can make all the difference between an enjoyable home buying experience or a complete headache.

Here are four tips to help you choose the best realtor in Scottsdale.

1. Find a Full-Time Agent

You’ll be spending a lot of time with your realtor in the coming weeks. Knowing they are always available to help gives you the peace of mind necessary to know your needs will be met.

If you have a question, you won’t want an agent who can’t get back to you until after they are finished at their other job. Ensure the realtor you hire can give you their full attention and is available to you via phone and email whenever necessary.

2. Check Their Experience Level

Ask potential agents how long they have been in business. Ideally, you will want to hire an agent with at least three years of experience. This provides more assurance that you’re working with someone who has the understanding and skills needed to help you.

You can also look up customer reviews on the agent to see what other people are saying about them. If you can find very few reviews or multiple negative comments, it may be better to move on to the next candidate.

3. Make Sure They Have the Necessary Connections

Your agent will be there with you throughout the entire processing of buying your new home. There are many steps that involve numerous people who all have different roles.

Make sure your agent has a network of individuals ranging from lenders and lawyers to contractors and interior designers. These previously made relationships will keep things running smoothly and prevent you from having to search for these people yourself.

4. Hire Someone Who Is Local

Having a long-distance relationship can be difficult for a dating couple and it can be just as complicated to have a long-distance relationship with a real estate agent. Finding a local realtor is key to having a strong business relationship during your home buying process. You want someone who is aware of your market and knows how to find what you’re looking for.

A reliable agent will be aware of other homes that have recently sold in the area. They’ll know details surrounding similar properties and their sales prices. You can also ask them questions about the local entertainment, restaurants, and nightlife.

The Kay-Grant Group only employs full-time and professional agents.  Andrea will work with you every step of the way and include team members when appropriate that are experts in their particular area.  

If you are planning a move to Scottsdale or one of the surrounding areas, please contact us to learn more. For additional details about what we can do for you be sure to check out www.kay-grant.com.

Andrea's specialties include Scottsdale and Andrea works with dozens of clients especially around the Old Town Scottsdale area including Old Town Scottsdale AZ Condos and houses.  Andrea is one of very few Realtors that assists with multiple transactions in the Optima in Old Town Scottsdale every year.

May 1, 2018

Coffee And Beer Proves To Be Winning Combo For These Local Entrepreneurs

While there’s nothing like a fantastic cup of coffee when it comes to putting a little pep in your step, sometimes you need a different kind of kick in the pants. When venturing out, that typically means you need to plan out your itinerary based on the way your personal winds may be blowing for that day. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a stellar local place in which you could snag either of the beverages of your choice - both of the caffeinated kind and of the adult variety? Good news - there is, and the concept is catching on in our neck of the woods. In fact, another one just opened up in Scottsdale at 7306 E. Shea Blvd. Sip Coffee & Brew Kitchen debuted as a single coffee shop on North Scottsdale Road in Old Town Scottsdale back in 2014, and it is now celebrating the opening of its third location. Travis Radevski, who co-founded of Sip along with Tida Radevski, offered up some insight into his light bulb moment that inspired the business. 

Sip offers an experience that sets itself above the typical coffee shop and/or bar. Customers want to enjoy a great cup of coffee, families want great food and business people want a place to come and have a great craft beer after work,” he explained. Sip is enjoying such success that it’s attracting interest from outside investors. Chris Loeffler, CEO and Co-Founder of Caliber - The Wealth Development Company, has taken the plunge to help Sip achieve further liftoff and grow even further. Caliber invests in people first and foremost, and Travis has the background and work ethic to make this brand an Arizona success story. Caliber has hotels and retail investments in multiple markets that could benefit from a dynamic brand like Sip taking space in our projects. We are excited to see what the future holds for Sip,” he said according to Business Wire.

Sip

It sounds like a win-win relationship has sprouted up, as the unique concept of Sip has certainly been a hit with local residents. It all started off with the first Sip Coffee & Beer House in 2014, and that was followed up with a new addition to the roster. Sip Coffee & Beer Garage, located in Arcadia, opened its doors to rave reviews in 2015. The newest member of the family - Sip Coffee & Beer Kitchen - opened up just recently. It’s the brand’s first full-service restaurant and dine-in cafe, and customers can enjoy options from all three day parts.

As Travis indicates, his growing company has even more irons in the fire to tend to in the coming years.“We’re extremely proud of our rapid growth and recognize the value to further achieve our vision with a partner like Caliber. We already have two more locations planned with a target of 10 locations in the coming years,” he added. So whether you’re in the mood for coffee or a beer, be sure to take a trip to Sip and raise your cup or glass to an awesome local success story.  As entrepreneurs and investors in Scottsdale ourselves we're always happy to see other success stories popping up in the neighborhood.   If you're interested in living close to a Sip, you can see all Scottsdale real estate for sale here.

Quotes were taken from Source: Business Wire

April 26, 2018

New North Phoenix Community Will Be 1st Of Its Kind In The Nation

New developments always have a way of capturing the attention of local residents. After all, who doesn’t like to stop and check out the happenings at a bustling construction site and wonder how it’s all going to turn out? Before too long, the development itself will meld right in with the surrounding landscape, and it will be business as usual as everyone moves on with their lives. 

Luna Azul North Phoenix

Every once in awhile, a really special development pops up that really captures the imagination. This one falls into that category, as it takes down the mantle of first of its kind in the nation - and it’s coming to the North Phoenix area. Developer Mark Roth and company are breaking ground on Luna Azul, a new 30 home community that’s being put together for an awesome purpose. 

Luna Azul is the first for-sale residential community for adults with special needs in the nation. Roth was inspired to build the community through his own life experiences, as he has an adult daughter with special needs. He gained valuable firsthand knowledge of how challenging it was to find suitable accommodations for her, not to mention a place that he would feel comfortable with himself. Roth had his lightbulb moment from that point, and Luna Azul was soon on the drawing board.      

“Luna Azul is a community where residents can live permanently, safely, and make lasting friendships,” he explains. “The community is suitable for adults with disabilities, providing them and others convenient access to services, vocational opportunities and urban amenities, and an atmosphere within which to live life securely and on their own terms.” 

The new development will consist of 2- and 3-bedroom homes that range in size from 1,152 to 1,956 sq. ft. Residents will have a choice of four different floor plans, and all home will feature large front porches and open living spaces. Prices will range from the mid-$300,000s to mid-$500,000s, and LaunchPAD Sales & Marketing Group is on board to ensure the community sells out before too long.  

Luna Azul will offer up a number of amenities for residents, including a multi-purpose flex room and kitchen, a clubhouse with a living room, and a pool. The community will have gated and controlled entry, 24/7 onsite staff, and a full-time director to assist residents with their needs. 

Luna Azul Cottage

For further inspiration, Roth drew on concepts made famous noted architect Ross Chapin, who envisioned what he referred to as “pocket neighborhoods,” which “provides the setting for neighbors to develop meaningful relationships beyond family and housemates.”

Hats off to Roth for an exceptional idea. Luna Azul sounds like it’s going to be a big hit, as well as a welcome addition to the area. 

If you're interested in learning more about Luna Azul, North Phoenix, or Scottsdale homes please don't hesitate to reach out and contact Andrea Lilienfeld at 480-387-3990.

 

 

April 23, 2018

Old Town Scottsdale Real Estate Market Trends (April 2018)

Yes, The Scottsdale Real Estate Market is Up :)

As you can imagine, we get a lot of questions around the real estate market in Old Town Scottsdale seeing as how we sell a lot of homes and condos in and around Old Town Scottsdale as well as reside in a condo in Old Town in the Optima Camelview.

Since 2008 we've seen the prices of single family homes and condos around all of Scottsdale increase substantially.  One of the main questions people have is will the prices of homes in Old Town Scottsdale maintain their current value, will they go up in value, or will they potentially decrease in the next several years (some people like to ask us if the Scottsdale housing market is going to crash).  

I can't tell you what the real estate market is going to do, but I can look at what it has done.

Let's take a look at the average price per square foot of all homes that sold in the Phoenix metro area over the last 5 years

Scottsdale Price Per Foot Last 5 years

We certainly see an upwards trend here.  In fact, 2018 appears to be off to quite the start really blowing the numbers for the same period in 2017 out of the water.  Q2 of 2017 averaged $159.41 and thus far in Q2 of 2018 (we're only 20 days in keep in mind) we're at $191.09.

If this is the Phoenix metropolitan area as a whole, how does Old Town Scottsdale specifically compare?  To keep things simple, let's define Old Town Scottsdale as being the 85251 zip code since that encompasses the majority of Old Town.

Old Town Scottsdale Real Estate Market Trend

It isn't surprising that the average price per square foot in Old Town Scottsdale is higher than the entire Phoenix metro, but it is interesting how steep the trendline is.  With that being said, 2018 isn't seeing the super large push that the rest of the metro is.

Guess where we are seeing the big price explosion?  Scottsdale as a whole!

Scottsdale Real Estate Market Trend

The price per square foot of homes in Scottsdale are really skyrocketing as of the last year and a half.

Continuing to look at the 85251 (Old Town) zip code, let's break this up by dwelling type:

Price Per Square Foot for 85251 / Old Town Scottsdale Condos and Townhouses

Old Town Condos Price Per Foot

As you can see, the price per foot of condos and townhouses in Old Town was extremely volatile between the end of 2012 and 2015 before the price started pretty steadily climbing into today.

Let's compare this to single family homes:

Price Per Square Foot for 85251 / Old Town Scottsdale Single-Family Houses

Old Town Scottsdale Houses Average Price Per Foot

Clearly, the price of condos in Old Town Scottsdale is much more volatile than the price of single-family homes.

What does all of this mean about the price of real estate in Old Town Scottsdale?

The one thing that we can probably derive from this is that if you're looking a short-term investment with minimum market volatility then purchasing a single family home is likely the safer option based on these numbers.  What we can't determine, is if the market will continue to rise or if there will be an adjustment to it.

Please note that with all of the above I've done my best to use as accurate data as possible but can't be held liable for any of the data or how you use it.  Purchasing real estate is a serious commitment and investment and you should seek professional guidance before making any sort of real estate investments.  

If you would like for us to assist you in any way, the first step is to contact my wife, Andrea, by calling or texting 480-387-3990 or using the contact form on our website.

 

 

April 20, 2018

Viewing the Lyrid Meteor Shower in Arizona

Peaking in the early hours of Sunday and Monday morning, the Lyrid Meteor shower will be making an appearance across the night sky. While the meteor shower can still be seen until April 25, this Sunday will be the best time to spot the meteors in Arizona. You'll be able to spot about 15 to 20 meteors per hour if you are able to find a place that has minimal light pollution.

 

scottsdale meteor

“The Lyrid meteor shower will be the first significant meteor shower in a few months,” AccuWeather Astronomy Blogger Dave Samuhel said. With the waxing moon, there should be little interference from moonlight after the moon sets around midnight.

The Lyrid meteor shower is an annual shower and is one of the oldest, dating back to at least 687 B.C when it was first observed by Chinese astrologists. Earth is crossing the orbital path of the Comet Thatcher, which causes pieces of the comet to enter into the atmosphere. These pieces burn, which causes the streaks of light we see across the sky. 

While it won’t be as dazzling of a show compared to the Perseids meteor shower occuring in August, the Lyrid’s will provide a much more pleasant viewing experience with overnight temperatures in the mid 70. Some cloud cover is expected Sunday and Monday night, but there should be enough breaks in the clouds to spot meteors. If you are unable to catch the shower this weekend, you can try again the following weekend.

The evening of May 6 and the morning of May 7 will be the peak time for the Eta Aquarid shower. The Earth is passing through debris left over from Halley’s comet, which is the cause of this annual shower. However, if you only have time to see one meteor shower, pick Lyrid’s. More meteors will be visible at a higher frequency.Even though state parks and most trails are closed during the prime meteor viewing hours, you can still find places with minimal lights. Pick a direction and drive about an hour outside of the Phoenix and Scottsdale city limits, away from big lights. The darker the sky the more meteors you will be able to see. The South Mountain, Cave Creek, or Picketpost mountain areas could be good places to escape from the light pollution. To check light pollution in your desired viewing area, check this map.

 

Tips

To see the most meteors, go about an hour before dawn. Between 1 am and 5 am is the best viewing time.

If you aren’t able to drive away from the city limits of Scottsdale, at least move away from any house or street lights. Any glaring light will interfere with your ability to see the meteors.

Save your neck and lie down to be able to see the full night sky. Since you might be staring up for an hour or more, this will be much more comfortable.

Binoculars or special glasses aren’t needed to see the show and can actually reduce the number of meteors you see because your view will be focused on just one part of the sky. All you need to do is open your eyes!

Plan to stay outside for at least 30 minutes in order to catch a sighting of a few meteors.

In the second half of the night, you will also be able to see Mars and Saturn. Right before dawn, Mercury will be visible as well.

Don't expect to see much around your Old Town Scottsdale condo but I'm guessing that heading north towards Sedona would provide a great place to view the the meteors.

Posted in AZ Events
April 18, 2018

Optima Camelview Market Update

If you're interested in the Optima Camelview Village condos real estate market, this is certainly a quick video that you should watch. Scottsdale Realtor Geoff Lilienfeld explores the Optima Camelview real estate market including condos presently on the market in Optima Camelview, as well as those recently sold.

 

For those that prefer to read the market update we have included the transcript below:

Today we're going to take a look at the market trends for the Optima Camelview Village in Old Town Scottsdale. Many people are familiar with the Optima. The Optima is a 700 unit condo complex located just off of North Scottsdale Road, just north of Fashion Square Mall.

We're taking a look here at trends for the past three years. Going back to the first quarter of 2016, for those that don't know there was a developer lawsuit that you see occur here and really hit the Optima sales prices pretty hard at the end of 2016. If we come back here we see average price per square foot at about $390 in the beginning of 2016, and by the end of 2016 we are down to $345 per square foot, so that lawsuit that the Optima went through definitely hit it pretty hard, but once that lawsuit is settled we can see it really rebounding.

Let's talk real quick about why it is that lawsuits cause the market to drop. A lot of it is fear that you won't be able to sell the condo because once a lawsuit is actually in litigation it's very hard to write loans against that condo. They're no longer warranted, and they pretty much cannot be borrowed against through conventional financing. In the Optima's case it never actually entered litigation, is my understanding. It was settled beforehand. I am not an expert on this litigation, but that's my understanding from hearsay at least.

We see that it definitely rebounded quite a bit once that was settled, and as we get into Q3 of 2017 it's up to $405 a foot, so actually higher than what we saw a year and a half earlier. Unfortunately, we've started to see prices continue to actually drop since that point in time bringing us to today where thus far for Q2 of 2018 the average price per square foot is actually down to $369 at the Optima Camelview, which is significantly lower from that $405 price point. That's almost a 10% fall, so we have seen prices go down.

In terms of the number of sales, the fact that 25 units have sold, and we've just barely began the second quarter, definitely says that we should expect to see a decent number of condos exchanging hands this year, even though yes, the spring is notoriously high season, especially for the Optima. The fact that we've already seen 25 units close would lead us in the direction to believe that inventory will be turning over and exchanging hands this year. Hopefully for everyone that owns units at the Optima, we will see this continue to change and go back to rising a little bit instead of dropping.

Now lets compare this to the rest of 85251. You'll see that 85251, this is the main Old Town Scottsdale zip code, has certainly been on the rise over the last few years. If you look at the two of those it does not bode well for the Optima. Again, hopefully this changes, and that's all homes including single family, and if we look specifically at our townhouses and condos, again in Old Town Scottsdale, we still see a very similar trend to what we just saw for the single family. Overall I'd say bad news for Optima Camelview Village prices at this exact time, but that doesn't mean that they won't rebound. We have seen that Optima can be somewhat of a volatile market in the past, so we will be looking for that to change.

The Optima is just one of several Old Town Scottsdale Condo communities.  If you have any questions about the Optima, Old Town Scottsdale houses or condos, or anywhere else in the AZ valley, please reach out. My wife, Andrea Lilienfeld, is the best person to contact. Her email is andrea@kay-grant.com and her number is 480-387-3990