Friday, December 11, 2009

Kingman Colorado River allocations just another deposit in the bank.

Arizona House of Representative, Nancy McLain is keeping her promise to once again initiate a bill this coming session to pass legislation to lift the industrial use only allocation from the remaining 3500 acre feet of Colorado River water allocations still held by the city of Kingman. Water availability is a concern to all of us. Many of us fail to understand the terms, laws or the regulative authorities involved through out the State. Many base our opinion and understanding of information relayed upon what is applicable or tangible to us.

The Colorado River is regulated by the Federal Bureau of Reclamation. It would serve us well to understand that this is not State regulated water, although the state of Arizona does have authority to regulate its allotted water from the Colorado River. This is done primarily in conjunction with the Central Arizona Project, an active management area (AMA) better known as CAP. For now, forget what you may think you know about groundwater, surface water, AMA's, property rights, wells and basins. It is important that we all understand how the Colorado River allocations came to be:

http://ag.arizona.edu/AZWATER/arroyo/101comm.html

Keep in mind that this agreement created a "bank" so that receivers could maintain their allocation excesses to prevent or ease the short term drought conditions or future availability declines. This was the beginning of the term "banking water", or to bank water credits. Originally intended to be shared among the States within their designated regions, as the demand for water became more prevalent in other States, the banked water is now being looked at by the Lower Colorado River Basin States as a solution for places as far from the river itself as San Antonio, Texas. Which brings into play the yet to be determined, "third party impact".

http://cedb.asce.org/cgi/WWWdisplay.cgi?9602671

How Arizona may be affected seems alarming:

http://westernfarmpress.com/mag/farming_arizona_faces_potential/

Remember, we are talking about Colorado River allocations now, not basins or wells or even Arizona surface water. The point needs to be made that Arizona has other resources as I am sure do the other seven states benefiting from the Colorado River allocations. This is key since Mohave County is sitting on four very large basins and though most of us in our area think that the Colorado River water has nothing to do with us, it does. As these allocations become less available, our basin water will become more vulnerable to the demands of the larger populations in the southern portions of the State.

Bullhead City and Lake Havasu City are "river communities". They have been very successful in keeping up the pace with their allotted river allocations and the politics that go with preserving those allocations. They have actively participated with Phoenix in banking their allocation excesses so why would they need to change legislation to purchase the remaining 3500 ac ft of industrial use only allocations from Kingman? Two thoughts come to mind. When you "bank" water, you are not storing actual water in a big reservoir to keep in reserve for when you need it. You are banking "credits", the water doesn't exist, it is just your interest or entitlement to that water that exists. So even though they have credits or water banked in Phoenix, it does not mean that Phoenix has the actual water to back those credits up. The river level rises and falls depending upon actual rainfall/snowfall run-offs, demand of use and the codes of threat advisory Homeland Security feels the dams may be under. It cannot be accurately predicted from one year to the next. CAP banks its credits with the other participating states of the Lower Colorado River Basin, which means it may not have the available water to access to send back down the line.

The other is as simple as the reasoning behind our Nation's current economic crisis that we have all been trying to sort out, greed. It is easy to bank credits that investors and lenders earn revenues from through the trade of shared interest, and we do all love to see those statements that show that our interest or account balance has grown. (Just ask Bernie's investors) But when the water banking bubble bursts, it is going to take more than a Stimulus Plan, Bailout or printing more money to keep us afloat. It will be Mohave County's actual water supply and economic development with it on the line to secure that Bullhead City, Lake Havasu City and the great state of Maricopa continue to thrive.

Now think wells, basins and surface water. That is where the "third party impact" is going to play out for us locally. Maybe it is also time to re-think pipeline and re-visit other possible solutions or explore new options. It is past time that we started considering the influence of the Colorado River allocations to Mohave County, we have to catch up with available resource options, educate ourselves politically, become as water savvy of the Colorado River allocations as we are groundwater. Bullhead City and Lake Havasu City are very versed on the applications and terms surrounding the Colorado River allocations, for them groundwater language, specifically aquifers not regulated by AMA's, and its applications are what is lacking fluency. Do not think for one moment that will hold them back or the MCWA from selling Kingman's allocations literally, down the river.

http://www.azwaterbank.gov/awba/

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Golden Valley Ahead of Its Time?

Recently I have been involved with the Golden Valley Chamber of Commerce, which is non-profit and remains in operation by the commitment of its volunteers. It's seen its ups and downs over the past 26 years, but it has weathered and seasoned into its own hallmark. When I first moved to Arizona in 1997 the 'Chamber didn't have a building of its own and operated partially out of Ed Bruce's office up by the (soon to re-open) Ocotillo on Hwy 68. Even then, the 'Chamber was where newcomers got their info and residents stated their communal concerns. Preserving the rural lifestyle of Golden Valley has long been a struggle and has led to many rigorous conversations regarding growth, water availability and planning. The 'Chamber of course has remained neutral, not taking an official position one way or the other politically while offering as much information as available to the community.

Long before "Climate Change", "Global Warming", "sustainability" and other catch phrases of the day evolved into the latest used vernacular for "being green", the Golden Valley Area Plan Committee valued their goals of preserving their lifestyle enough to have it stated in the executive summary:"Guard the individual’s property rights, quality of life and the environment in this rural community. Obtain reasonable development density and open-space which will remain non-intrusive on the neighborhood. Look for and support commercial and industrial development that is environmentally sensitive, offers quality employment, provides for the needs of the community and increases the tax base. Develop healthy, uncluttered neighborhoods for all that own property and live within the community. Enhance public safety infrastructure and opportunities for family oriented activities. Nourish the quiet enjoyment, scenic views, and night sky that make this a wonderful environment for the entire community.
(see: http://resource.co.mohave.az.us/File/PlanningAndZoning/GVAP.pdf pg. 2)

Finding commercial and industrial development that is environmentally sensitive, while offering quality employment and providing for the needs of the community while increasing the tax base has been a challenge over the past 35 years or so since the plan was adopted, but the times are rapidly changing. Seems that suddenly Golden Valley is more politically correct than once assumed. The growth controversies, water availabilities and economic development challenges may soon find themselves in an era of resolution and the Golden Valley Chamber of Commerce is taking its position of being the conduit of available information as a community oriented service for the 'Valley once again.

Hopefully most of you saw The Daily Miner this week with its highlight on Bobbi Case, the Golden Valley Chamber of Commerce President on the front page.

(see: http://kingmandailyminer.com/main.asp?SectionID=1&SubSectionID=1&ArticleID=34949&TM=45650.53)

Mohave County has long searched and struggled to secure economic development that would perpetuate a stable and strong economic base. During the past few years, our I40 Industrial Corridor has seen its power source improved to actually support a manufacturing base to attract developers. Water availability issues are being worked on continuously and as expeditiously as possible to insure that there is water and service to support the Corridor. Mohave Community College and the JTED vocational courses are being quickly reviewed and modified to insure that we will have an available skilled work force to strengthen our "draw" to industry. We even have solar plants and the biodiesal plant approved with a new E-zone. So the next question should be as Bobbi poised, "Why couldn't we manufacture some of those things (solar panels and wind turbines or support equipment) here?" It may not have been the specific conception of the Golden Valley Area Plan Committee all those years ago when they initiated and approved the area plan, but Mohave County is desirable for the upcoming industrial age; renewable, sustainable...environmentally sensitive and very economically sound with plenty of tax revenue generating potential. And Golden Valley is strategically located to benefit.

The question that seems to remain unanswered is if Golden Valley's rural lifestyle can still be genuinely preserved along the way. Will the quiet enjoyment of the property owners along with their water rights, their quality of life be sacrificed or will the Golden Valley Area Plan be the sustaining force that not only encourages the current development d' jour but meets the original intent of its planning committee. Will Golden Valley remain a sleeper community en route between Kingman, AZ and Laughlin, NV or could it possibly be the model for rural communities facing similar issues across the nation? Who would have thought that a group of local people could have been so progressive 35 years ago before "Global Warming"/ "Climate Change", and to think, they were and still are, all volunteers. Volunteers and community service, even the participation has been conceptually "green".

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving folks!!


Ahh... I love the classics. Thanksgiving is such a beautiful holiday, my sincere best wishes go out to you and yours (yeah Loyd, especially you).

What am I thankful for this year?? Well I'm thankful for the hacker that blew the lid off the Global Warming nonsense.

Monday, November 23, 2009

October Sales Report (2009)

My bad for getting these sales reports out later and later every month, just been busy working and haven't found the time. Plus, I'm living with my wife again after almost a couple of years so blogging hasn't been as needed to pass the time nearly as much.

Well this report won't show anything all that new, but it is showing how this year is going to end up basically. It will be the best year in terms of total number of units sold since 2006 (it will come up well short of the number posted that year), and the average price will be the lowest since I started collecting this data back in 2004.

And unfortunately this year will mark another poor performance by sellers... traditional sellers that is. Banks have dominated the sales in 2009 via the foreclosure sale, and while I don't track short sales at all, it is an easy guess that banks played a big role in the final sales for the traditional sellers as well. 2009 will be the year of the bank in this market by the looks of it.

So let's get to the looks of it -- looks of it getters... after the disclaimer first of course...

Disclaimer... all data compiled for this report comes from the WARDEX Data Exchange and does not include any sales activity from outside that resource. All research is done only on single family homes and there is no inclusion of modular homes, commercial properties, or vacant land. The geographical area researched includes; all areas within the boundaries of the city of Kingman, north Kingman, the Hualapai Mountain area, and the Valle Vista subdivisions. Click here to see maps of the included area's.

Listings and sales in units chart:

Unit sales fell as compared to the previous month, but still... third best month in these terms this year.

Average listings and sales averages chart:

Ho-hum.

2006 through 2009 unit sales chart:

Shaping up to be fine year unit wise.

Sales in October of 2009 were up 18% compared to the previous year.

2006 through 2009 average price chart:

Almost gives the impression of a floor... the green line that represents the average price in each month in 2009 that is.

The average price slipped 21% as compared to the October of 2008 average sales price.

2006 through 2009 median price chart:


The median price fell 22% compared to October of last year.

Final sales prices in October 2009 ranged from $24,000 to $298,000.


Average SFR statistics:

Data tables for all sales tracked in October 2009

Price Data
ItemOct. '09
Average Price per Unit Sold $112,600
Median Price per Unit Sold $95,000
Average Price per Square Foot $74

House Data
Item Oct. '09
Ave Living Space per Square Foot 1,521
Bedrooms2.99
Bathrooms2.01
Garage2.09
Year Built 1994

Marketing Data
ItemOct. '09
Days on Market to Contract 71
Days on Market to Close 108
Price Reductions on Market $19,509
Negotiated Price Concessions $5,674
Total Price Concessions $15,183
Total Percent Conceded
11.88%

Bonus Charts:




Traditional Seller vs. Bank Owned sales comparison for October 2009

Price Data
ItemTraditional Seller
Bank Owned
Total Units Sold in Month
27
40
Average Price per Unit Sold $126,484$103,228
Median Price per Unit Sold $117,950$77,900
Average Price per Square Foot $86$67

House Data
Item Traditional SellerBank Owned
Ave Living Space per Square Foot 1,4781,549
Bedrooms3.00
2.98
Bathrooms2.002.03
Garage2.192.03
Year Built 2000
1990

Marketing Data
ItemTraditional Seller Bank Owned
Days on Market to Contract 115
41
Days on Market to Close 152
79
Price Reductions on Market $12,419$7,544
Negotiated Price Concessions $8,092$4,043
Total Price Concessions $20,511$11,587
Total Percent Conceded14%
10%

Wrap Up:

Not much to wrap up as the data says all that really needs to be said. I did notice a slight increase in the average price per square foot of the bank owned foreclosure sales, I'll keep tabs on that. But for the most part, if you are in need of a home and are ready, willing, and able to buy one, you have the ability to purchase at beneath 2004 prices. Does that mean it is a great time to buy?? Only you can answer that one.

Happy hunting.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Unemployment map...

Check this out... it is a map that shows county by county unemployment rates starting back in January 2007. Mohave County is hard to miss on this map... unfortunately.

Updated:

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Property rights vs. water...

Local governmental decisions are expected tomorrow on the two proposed solar plants in Mohave County. Here is a link to a nice little preview of the county supervisor meeting, and a blurb worth noting...

If the Board approves the amendments, both solar companies will still have to get all of the necessary federal and state permits before they can start construction.


See folks, it is not the end tomorrow... for neither side... whichever side you may be on.

I'm simply on the side of the property owner and I feel that the local government should respect private property rights to the very last degree. The decision the supervisors make will have much less to do about water than property rights.

UPDATED:

According to the writing of Donna Crouse in the comments below... both proposed solar projects passed the Mohave County Board of Supervisors at today's meeting. Thanks so much Donna for the update.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterans Day

In honor of those who have sacrificed for our freedom...



Thank you.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

With headlines like these...

It's funny when the KDMiner editor gets all uppity about what is best for the community and then turns around and offers up the following headline...

Angry bikers to converge on Kingman

Just a crappy headline in so many ways.

However, the article itself is certainly worth a read. I even see some concerns for private property rights issues in this deal. From the article...

Deborah Barry, owner of Mad Dog's, said she instituted a "no colors" policy more than a month ago because of the surveillance being conducted by police in her parking lot. Because the bikers were being watched and photographed, they were less likely to drink, which led to a drop in revenue, and ultimately, the ban on colors, she said.

Barry said she was never threatened to have her liquor license revoked if she didn't ban colors.


Look, I don't know enough about motorcycle clubs... I don't drink at bars with any sort of frequency... or even know a dern thing about motorcycles for that matter -- but I'm siding with the motorcycle club chairman from the article and proprietors of private establishments if indeed it is true that some level of government is hanging the threat of a state liquor license against a property owner if they don't institute some policy that isn't even a law passed by the people.

It is becoming clear that it is time to remember our rights... and more importantly to protect them.

But some good news in defiance to the headline...

Ray said up to 2,000 riders could roll into Kingman by Saturday. He said he was aware of a couple of groups of more than 400 riders coming from Phoenix.

Ray said the riders have been invited to take part in the Veteran's Day parade in North Kingman Saturday morning. The parade will begin at 11 a.m. at the corner of North Bond Street and Northern Avenue.


Too bad for the city of Kingman though I guess that the newly voted on increase in hotel room rates won't be in effect for the visit. Maybe the 'angry bikers' won't be so angry when they find out they'll save a buck or two.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Feathers ruffled...

Just watch the latest city council meeting starting at about minute 11 and again around the 19 minute mark..

As someone that only knows the RAID member (being talked about in the video that was a possible appointee to the city Planning and Zoning commission) based on what I have observed the gentleman say at local public meetings, I honestly do not know the man or have ever had any kind of conversation with him before... for all I know he is the sweetest man to ever walk the face of the earth... but at public meetings (either city of Kingman or Mohave County variety) he rarely makes a damn bit of sense.

I missed what went on at the prior City Council meeting when Sandi Reynolds was selected by the council to fill the seat vacated on the city Planning and Zoning commission, but between the choices that were moved to be considered... Councilman Lyons and the rest made the right decision in my opinion.

I enjoyed watching the majority of RAID members speak at the most recent call to the public. I've met a couple of the individual members of RAID and each time found each individual member to be genuine and courteous... but together as a group, I (and a whole lot of others around the city) disagree with the stance that RAID has taken on some important issues. Truth be told Mr. Lyons gave that group a taste of their own medicine.

Seriously, they do the same stuff, you've heard members of this group go negative talking about developers, builders, etc. What councilman Lyons said is no different, and he certainly has his Constitutional right to disagree with a community group such as RAID.

Buck up kids.

Hopefully by now Councilman Lyons and the vast RAID organization has had themselves a cup of java or two by now and this episode blows over.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

October Listings Report (2009)

November already, wow. There has been a pleasant and noticeable increase in activity all throughout the year, and each time I think the level of activity is about to fall off -- I get to report another bump to the good side in terms of unit activity. So without making you wait much longer, much longer waiters, here is the disclaimer...

Disclaimer... all data compiled for this report comes from the WARDEX Data Exchange and does not include any sales activity from outside that resource. All research is done only on single family homes and there is no inclusion of modular homes, commercial properties, or vacant land. The geographical area researched includes; all areas within the boundaries of the city of Kingman, north Kingman, the Hualapai Mountain area, and the Valle Vista subdivisions. Click here to see maps of the included area's.

Data tables for all new listings tracked in the month of October 2009

As of November 1 Total Listings on Market
Item Total Units
Previous Month
Total Listings On Market
372 430
Total Listings Listed as Foreclosed
63 63

New Listing Data
Item Month of October Previous Month
New Listings Total
92
88
New Listings Listed as Foreclosed
46
32
Average Asking Price Per Unit
$137,748 $158,623
Median Asking Price
$99,900 $119,000
Average Asking Price Per Square Foot
$88 $96
Units Re-Listed
9
9
Units Already Under Contract
25
14

New Listing House Data
Item Month of October Previous Month
Living Area Square Footage
1,556 1,644
Bedrooms 3.09 3.16
Bathrooms 2.08 2.13
Garage
1.86
2.0
Year Built
19901993


Price Range of New Listings in October
Item Lowest Highest
Listings$25,000$699,000


Total listings on market has really come down throughout this year, and of course compared to the year prior (as you will see later in this report). However, I'm not seeing a ton of good news for traditional sellers... foreclosures are still setting the pace. And now we see that half the new listings for the month were in fact bank owned properties.

I still see and hear reports about a 'shadow inventory' just waiting for the right time to jump back into the market. That would be awfully tough to digest if true for this local market. By the looks of it, the current market has the least amount of available inventory since the heady days of the real estate boom many, many moons ago.

Data tables for all new Units under contract tracked in the month of October 2009

As of November 1 Total Units Under Contract
Item Total Units
Previous Month
Total Units Under Contract
143 127
Total Contracts Listed as Foreclosed
70 61

Units Under Contract Data
Item Month of October Previous Month
New Contracts Total
84 62
New Contracts Listed as Foreclosed
47
36
Average Marketing Price Per Unit
$116,697 $133,579
Median Marketing Price
$102,000 $110,000
Average Marketing Price Per Square Foot
$74 $81
Days on Market to Acquire a Contract
90
92
Average Marketing Price Reduction
$8,738
$14,793

New Units Under Contract House Data
Item Month of October Previous Month
Living Area Square Footage
1,585 1,642
Bedrooms 3.17 3.13
Bathrooms 2.04 2.11
Garage
1.77
2.0
Year Built
19931995


Price Range of New Pending Contracts in October
Item Lowest Highest
Listings$36,900$274,900

Activity picks back up again after slowing a bit back in September. Going back to March, on average there have been about 78 new contracts written each month. 2009 has been the most active year by far since the bottom fell out of the local housing market. The reason why it doesn't feel like a rally though... obviously because the banks are, by far, the biggest player on the stage. They are offering the bargains in bulk, the buyers (who have existed all along) have responded to price and perceived value.

So let's take a look at year over year data now...

Year over year data listings/pending contracts

Listings
ItemUP/DOWN
unit/dollar amount
Percentage
Total Listings DOWN220
(37%)
New Listings September
DOWN
8
(8%)
Average Price per New Listing
DOWN$63,689
(32%)
Median List Price
DOWN
$52,000
(34%)


Pending Contracts
ItemUP/DOWNunit/dollar amountPercentage
Total Pending Contracts UP
68
90%
New Contracts for SeptemberUP37
79%
Average Marketing Price per Unit
DOWN$48,147
(29%)
Median Marketing Price DOWN$32,200
(24%)


Prices have taken a beating and the activity soars. But I gotta say that losing 37% of last years inventory -- somehow, someway -- is the bright spot of this months report. Buyers may soon feel some pressure if that trend continues. The Kingman market may yet see the return of the urgent buyer. Stay tuned.

Ya'll be well.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

September Sales Report (2009)

Like a Jimmy Rollins gap shot down one run with two aboard and two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning versus... say the Dodgers in game four of the NLCS, the sales activity for the previous month was incredible.

Yes folks, this means I'm watching a bit of baseball these days (the HD tv in my living room has me mesmerized and coupled with the busy days has left me little time to blog). While I'm having fun getting ready for the next opponent for my beloved Phillies I thought I'd pass along the following market report.

I think some of the data will surprise you. The last time my reports showed this much activity in a month I was writing blog posts like this one.

So enjoy this one and I hope to catch up with some other posts about the local happenings over the weekend. Cheers folks...

Disclaimer... all data compiled for this report comes from the WARDEX Data Exchange and does not include any sales activity from outside that resource. All research is done only on single family homes and there is no inclusion of modular homes, commercial properties, or vacant land. The geographical area researched includes; all areas within the boundaries of the city of Kingman, north Kingman, the Hualapai Mountain area, and the Valle Vista subdivisions. Click here to see maps of the included area's.

Listings and sales in units chart:

Oh my... the last time 82 units were sold in a month it was May of 2006... seems like oh so very long ago.

Average listings and sales averages chart:

The song remains the same for prices, no need to delve further.

2006 through 2009 unit sales chart:

Also noteworthy... sales in units in 2009 have already eclipsed the total number of all sales in 2008... with one quarter to go.

Sales in September of 2009 were up 90% compared to the previous year.

2006 through 2009 average price chart:

Prices are meandering a bit, a nice bump for traditional sellers last month though. My hats off to you.

The average price slipped 17% as compared to the September of 2008 average sales price.

2006 through 2009 median price chart:



The median price fell 22% compared to September of last year.

Final sales prices in September 2009 ranged from $18,000 to $292,000.

Average SFR statistics:

Data tables for all sales tracked in September 2009

Price Data
ItemSep. '09
Average Price per Unit Sold $121,642
Median Price per Unit Sold $101,000
Average Price per Square Foot $76

House Data
Item Sep. '09
Ave Living Space per Square Foot 1,600
Bedrooms3.13
Bathrooms2.11
Garage1.9
Year Built 1996

Marketing Data
ItemSep. '09
Days on Market to Contract 84
Days on Market to Close 129
Price Reductions on Market $10,805
Negotiated Price Concessions $5,871
Total Price Concessions $16,676
Total Percent Conceded
12.06%

Bonus Charts:

Traditional Seller vs. Bank Owned sales comparison for September 2009

Price Data
ItemTraditional Seller
Bank Owned
Total Units Sold in Month
34
48
Average Price per Unit Sold $157,336$96,358
Median Price per Unit Sold $125,000$88,500
Average Price per Square Foot $93$63

House Data
Item Traditional SellerBank Owned
Ave Living Space per Square Foot 1,6981,531
Bedrooms3.2
3.0
Bathrooms2.152.1
Garage2.21.7
Year Built 19951996

Marketing Data
ItemTraditional Seller Bank Owned
Days on Market to Contract 12753
Days on Market to Close 174
96
Price Reductions on Market $13,676$8,771
Negotiated Price Concessions $10,879$2,325
Total Price Concessions $24,555$11,096
Total Percent Conceded13.5%
10.3%

Wrap Up:

As stated earlier... a good month for sellers (and isn't about time!!). Of course keep in mind the splits between traditional sellers and foreclosures... banks still are dominating the sales market at this time.

I was hoping to see an month like September finally after the last few very good months of activity shown in the listing and pending reports.

Not one for making bold predictions or anything so I'll just do like I do as I'm watching my beloved Phillies move on in the playoffs... I just feel at peace and have confidence that things will work themselves out. Plus it doesn't hurt when your team is defending World Champions and look better than they did the previous year. To me Kingman will always be the defending World Champion. Better days ahead.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

September Listings Report (2009)

The good news is that the Philadelphia Phillies clinched their division last night, meaning they get to go on to the playoffs for the third straight season. Means also that my fan related blood pressure will rise for as long as they remain in the playoffs for this next month... the month of October. Really?? Already?? The time sure is flying.

Not sure if there really is any bad news in this listings report. Much of it is the same old same old as we have been accustomed to here in the Kingman area. Let's get right to it, after the disclaimer of course...

Disclaimer... all data compiled for this report comes from the WARDEX Data Exchange and does not include any sales activity from outside that resource. All research is done only on single family homes and there is no inclusion of modular homes, commercial properties, or vacant land. The geographical area researched includes; all areas within the boundaries of the city of Kingman, north Kingman, the Hualapai Mountain area, and the Valle Vista subdivisions. Click here to see maps of the included area's.

Data tables for all new listings tracked in the month of September 2009

As of October 1 Total Listings on Market
Item Total Units
Previous Month
Total Listings On Market
430 426
Total Listings Listed as Foreclosed
63 62

New Listing Data
Item Month of September Previous Month
New Listings Total
88 105
New Listings Listed as Foreclosed
32 43
Average Asking Price Per Unit
$158,623 $133,546
Median Asking Price
$119,000 $109,950
Average Asking Price Per Square Foot
$96 $84
Units Re-Listed
9
11
Units Already Under Contract
14
28

New Listing House Data
Item Month of September Previous Month
Living Area Square Footage
1,644 1,582
Bedrooms 3.16 2.97
Bathrooms 2.13 2.06
Garage
2.01.89
Year Built
19931991


Price Range of New Listings in September
Item Lowest Highest
Listings$29,680$799,900


The prime selling summer months are over and the numbers reflect that as the total number of new listings in the month of September is down back in the double digits again (where it really needs to be until there is more of something that looks like a balanced market). The average price is up on these new listings, which is not reflective of the market, but probably did so because there were a few high dollar listings that were put on the market in September.

All in all, much of what I expected to see for the month of September.

Data tables for all new Units under contract tracked in the month of September 2009

As of October 1 Total Units Under Contract
Item Total Units
Previous Month
Total Units Under Contract
127 162
Total Contracts Listed as Foreclosed
61 76

Units Under Contract Data
Item Month of September Previous Month
New Contracts Total
62 84
New Contracts Listed as Foreclosed
36 44
Average Marketing Price Per Unit
$133,579 $118,501
Median Marketing Price
$110,000 $101,998
Average Marketing Price Per Square Foot
$81 $77
Days on Market to Acquire a Contract
92
94
Average Marketing Price Reduction
$14,793
$12,828

New Units Under Contract House Data
Item Month of September Previous Month
Living Area Square Footage
1,642 1,545
Bedrooms 3.13 3.02
Bathrooms 2.11 2.03
Garage
2.01.87
Year Built
19951993


Price Range of New Pending Contracts in September
Item Lowest Highest
Listings$24,900$640,000

More of the same here for new contracts as it was for new listings above. The prime selling summer months have zipped by. Foreclosures remain the most sought after type of housing even with the sagging numbers. Banks didn't see the same sort of drop off in activity as traditional sellers did last month.

Again, typical and what could be expected for this time of year based on the data over the previous years.

So let's take a look at year over year data now...

Year over year data listings/pending contracts

Listings
ItemUP/DOWN
unit/dollar amount
Percentage
Total Listings DOWN201
(32%)
New Listings September
DOWN
1
(1%)
Average Price per New Listing
DOWN$34,737
(18%)
Median List Price
DOWN
$30,450
(20%)


Pending Contracts
ItemUP/DOWNunit/dollar amountPercentage
Total Pending Contracts UP
53
71%
New Contracts for SeptemberUP8
15%
Average Marketing Price per Unit
DOWN$18,349
(12%)
Median Marketing Price DOWN$15,000
(12%)


Inventory is down and activity is up compared to last year... it is the best thing that can be said looking at the tables. However, inventory is still too high in all reality which most likely means that there will be more pressure on sellers to reduce price further as the market slides into the slower months of the year.

I have a bad feeling that it will feel as if we all took one step forward, but we will have to take a step and a half or two steps back.

Cheers folks.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

August Sales Report (2009)

Well here is to the first sales report from New Mexico. Truth be told, I've done some of these reports from other parts of the country before so nothing brand new here. However my main challenge this time is I'm still setting up my computers here in NM and I've not established a new 'routine' if you will. This is why this report comes out today about a week later than normal.

And unfortunately the data in this report is not as hoped. For the first time this year the total number of sales in units in the month is lower than it was in the previous year. There was good news in the listing report earlier this month that showed plenty of activity, meaning a good number of homes going into contract -- but for whatever reason that activity has not equaled success in the number of sales. Let's see the numbers... after the disclaimer of course...

Disclaimer... all data compiled for this report comes from the WARDEX Data Exchange and does not include any sales activity from outside that resource. All research is done only on single family homes and there is no inclusion of modular homes, commercial properties, or vacant land. The geographical area researched includes; all areas within the boundaries of the city of Kingman, north Kingman, the Hualapai Mountain area, and the Valle Vista subdivisions. Click here to see maps of the included area's.

Listings and sales in units chart:

As you can see the numbers on the red line in the graph indicate that the total number of sales topped out in June of this year. I was surprised to see the number fall to 53 for the month of August, normally a strong month for sales. Last year August proved to be the best month for sales, well at least tied for the best month, with 59. So we are off a bit.

Average listings and sales averages chart:

The average sale price seems to have leveled off as I thought it might in a report from a few months ago. More on this later on. For traditional sellers and those thinking about selling please take a good look at the success rate as indicated by the red line in the graph above. If you can market your home at that level, you will have the best chance to move your property quickly.

2006 through 2009 unit sales chart:

In my opinion the softening of production indicates that buyers are a bit more scarce than hoped for, even after the huge decreases in prices over the last year. Where we go from here may not be pretty. Hope I'm very wrong about that though.

Sales in August of 2009 were off about 12% compared to the previous year.

2006 through 2009 average price chart:

The green line in the graph above clearly shows that prices have stabilized quite a bit this year. However, these new lower prices have not brought out as many buyers as hoped for in the Kingman area. I get a bad feeling that we will see another round of falling prices to lure additional buyers to the market. And it will likely be the foreclosures that will move the market price downward yet again.

The average price slipped 22% as compared to the August of 2008 average sales price.

2006 through 2009 median price chart:


The median price fell 27% compared to July of last year.

Final sales prices in August 2009 ranged from $15,000 to $312,000.

Average SFR statistics:

Data tables for all sales tracked in August 2009

Price Data
ItemAug. '09
Average Price per Unit Sold $110,069
Median Price per Unit Sold $96,203
Average Price per Square Foot $69

House Data
Item Aug. '09
Ave Living Space per Square Foot 1,585
Bedrooms2.94
Bathrooms2.09
Garage1.77
Year Built 1990

Marketing Data
ItemAug. '09
Days on Market to Contract 107
Days on Market to Close 142
Price Reductions on Market $17,340
Negotiated Price Concessions $6,033
Total Price Concessions $23,373
Total Percent Conceded
17.5%

Bonus Charts:



Foreclosure Impact:

Another month where we saw the foreclosure listings dominate the sales market. Really take a good look at the side by side comparisons. Scary stuff... for traditional sellers. Actually pretty scary for real estate professionals as well. The marketing time alone before the average traditional seller agrees to a contract... a little over four additional months of waiting for just the right buyer to come along.

Traditional Seller vs. Bank Owned sales comparison for August 2009

Price Data
ItemTraditional Seller
Bank Owned
Total Units Sold in Month
19
34
Average Price per Unit Sold $130,334$98,744
Median Price per Unit Sold $110,000$86,900
Average Price per Square Foot $82$62

House Data
Item Traditional SellerBank Owned
Ave Living Space per Square Foot 1,5811,587
Bedrooms2.952.94
Bathrooms2.112.09
Garage2.01.65
Year Built 19911990

Marketing Data
ItemTraditional Seller Bank Owned
Days on Market to Contract 19559
Days on Market to Close 22694
Price Reductions on Market $27,842$11,471
Negotiated Price Concessions $12,166$2,606
Total Price Concessions $40,008$14,077
Total Percent Conceded23.5%
12.5%

Wrap Up:

Not much else to add this month as once again the number do tell the story just fine on their own.

I could go on a local political rant about creating demand for the Kingman community, as quite simply there is hardly any demand for property in Kingman at the moment... just like there is hardly any demand for employers to hire employees and all that... but I'll leave that alone at this time.

I still think that the community has so much going for it that could lead to additional demand, Kingman is simply a wonderful place to be. So here is to better days ahead!! See you next month (hopefully I'll find a goodly routine so I get this report out sooner than I did this month).

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Solar plant discussions part deux...

Just a reminder that the Mohave County Planning and Zoning Commission will continue the meetings on the two proposed solar power plants tomorrow September 16th at 10:00am at the county administration building on Beale.

I was not there last week and haven't watched the video of the meeting online or otherwise. Judging from the articles published so far, it sounds like only the Albiassa owned plant made it to the public discussion. I am more interested in the Hualapai Valley Solar project (the one near the Red Lake area) as they are the group talking about using waste water produced by the residents in the Kingman area. I see it as a smarter way to use the 'precious' resource rather than allowing it to simply evaporate away after one use.

So if you are in the area, stop by and check out this meeting. Feel free to give some updates in the comments, share with everyone your take.

As a reminder of what went down at last weeks meeting, my good friend Dave Hawkins sent me the following article that will appear in this weeks Standard. It is posted below all italicized and all that.


Article provided by Dave Hawkins

Consideration of requests related to proposed development of a major solar power facility southeast of Kingman featured plenty of familiar debate between those who support and oppose the project. But discussion at the September 9 meeting of the Mohave County Planning and Zoning Commission also included exchanges between a couple Commission members and Mike Horner, the Litchfield Park resident who owns the land where the 200-megawatt AlbiasaCorp. facility would be built and operated.

Member Mehdi Azarmi said the operation's consumption of groundwater has been the key issue of concern all along and that project officials need to be more specific and factual in that arena. Azarmi and Commissioner Carl Flusche said varying numbers keep surfacing in discussions.

``You gotta (sic) start being up-front and straight shooters with the people because otherwise you're not going to get the results that you want," Flusche said.

Horner responded that groundwater consumption was forecast between 1,000 and 4,000 acre-feet per year when the project was initially announced. He said engineering and design analysis has refined that figure to a current consumption expectation of 2,275 acre-feet per year.

Flusche said Commission members received e-mail and other communication from citizens who complained they didn't get straight answers during the series of public information meetings that project officials held in previous months. Horner said the complaints come from critics who can't reasonably consider the merits of the project.

``The data that was given at some of our meetings was not the data that some of the opponents were looking for and that's probably the reason that they blew up your phones or sent you 15 e-mails," Horner said. ``Anybody who knows me knows I'm probably more direct than courteous. I'm very direct and if I know it I will tell you what it is, and if I don't I'll tell you I don't know, but I'll find out. I don't come to these meetings to try to pull the wool over anybody's eyes."

Project critics, as they have whenever the solar facility has been the subject of a public meeting, spoke critically of use of technology that will consume groundwater. They repeated their concern that the water is consumed locally to generate power that will be sold elsewhere to the highest bidder.

Project officials and their supporters repeated their point that the power plant will serve as a stimulus to the local economy and take a necessary progressive step forward as the nation turns to cleaner energy production and the need to wean itself of its foreign oil dependance. They again noted the 1,000 jobs that would be provided during project construction and the 100-plus people who would be put to work to run the facility.

The discussion gobbled up about two hours, and the Commission adjourned the meeting without voting on Albiassa matters or other requests related to the larger Hualapai Valley Solar facility proposed north of Kingman. Both projects were to come back before the Commission in a continued hearing scheduled September 16.

(Look to future editions of the Standard for continued coverage of the solar power project proposals)

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Well... it is that time

Hey folks, first I want to say what an honor it is for me that you have stopped by to read anything that is written here at MOCO. This blog is about three and a half years old now, and all throughout there have been changes. Today comes a bigger change.

You look at the top and you will see that the blog's title has changed. We are now MOCO Real Politics. The goals still remain the same though, honest opinion and relevant research of the pressing issues of the day. There will be no shortage of either as we move forward.

Some of you know that I am leaving the area that I have called home for nearly the last ten years. I can say that I don't often share my personal family information here at this blog, but in this case part of the reason I am making the change is to once again join my wife on a more permanent basis under one roof. We have lived apart for nearly two years. In many ways the experiences have been easier than expected... and we've certainly had fun (nothing like total control of the remote control... and Gail would say the very same thing).

But new opportunities have revealed themselves to both my wife and me and we are looking forward to new challenges in New Mexico. Now that is not to say that we are leaving behind this area in northwestern Arizona. In fact we both love it here and know that if we make good on our opportunities that it would allow us the choice to re-relocate back home. For the time being though, we will have to make due with frequent visits to Kingman.

Luckily for me, with all of the interest that I have in this great community, I'll only be an Internet connection away. This is why I am keeping this blog in existence, and I hope to grow it even though I won't be physically here.

I've asked a few people to help contribute to the blog. So if you don't recognize the writing style or even the format of a new post, be sure to look below the post for the actual author.

I'd like to have even more contributors so if you are interested in offering your information and opinion on the political happenings in the Mohave County area, please email me by clicking on the 'email Todd' button on the sidebar. I'll even open it up to folks that may not want to use their real name as a contributor, perhaps you'll feel more comfortable using an online moniker. But in order to do that, I will at least have to know who you are. We'll work that out via email an phone.

The goal is to get more conversations going about the important issues. It is about bringing more voices into the fold, more collaboration efforts to find pleasing solutions for a greater percentage of the friends and neighbors here in Kingman and beyond. Trust me, you can help and that is why I ask you to contribute.

As for residential real estate related data and the monthly reports I have offered up over the last three plus years... I plan on continuing the sales report that I produce ten or so days into the month that covers what took place the prior month. As I mentioned in the listings report a few days ago, I'm not as certain if I will keep that report going... it will just depend on time constraints. If I think that I cannot continue that report, I will announce that change.

I still have an active real estate license and am still a member of the local, state, and national association of Realtors. It is my intention to help anyone that needs real estate services in this area as best as I can. Even if that means coming back to the area to provide the real estate related services. If I am unable to provide that service, I certainly can point an interested person to the right direction of an agent or broker that can.

For the last few months I have been a part of a podcast called 'Mohave Real Talk' and the plan there is to continue those podcasts with my good friend and excellent real estate broker in Bullhead City, Evan Fuchs. I know some of you can't hardly wait for the next episode as they arrive, so I will be sure to announce when the new podcasts are available on this blog, and via Twitter and Facebook.

Perhaps it might seem like I never left. What a wonderful thing this here Internet doo-hickey is.

As for the title change of the blog, I simply feel there is not enough focus on political issues here in this area and this blog will do whatever it can to shed light on important community issues. There will be attempts to have email interviews with community leaders so that we can all have a chance to see what is on the minds of our leaders. And if possible, even video interviews to share.

Bottom line here, I urge you to get involved in the community and I can at least offer you a platform here at MOCO. Please feel compelled to use the comments if you do not want to publish your own contributions. Beyond MOCO though, attend a public meeting at either the county or the city. Speak in front of the governing bodies on an issue at those meetings. Watch the meetings on local access TV or via an Internet connection. Ask questions, demand answers of our local public servants that have the privilege of our votes.

The one key issue that I believe in strongly is the protection of private property rights. Those rights extend beyond real estate, please keep that in mind. I believe that these rights are being threatened by not only the local governments at times, but also by some folks that really have no concept of the rights until they too are faced with something that could threaten their own rights.

Without a doubt, the community will lose valuable property rights before we ever run out of water. I plan on researching more about the protection of private property rights and the things that we can do to ensure we always have them (just like we will always have water here). You can bet that I will share all of the pertinent information about property rights so you will stay in the know.

My next post will be published from New Mexico, but just so you know it won't be the first post that I published from New Mexico or Minnesota or Florida or Nevada or many other places. This will be the 1,030th post on MOCO... help me push this total over 2,000 posts in the next few years.

God bless you all, thanks again from the bottom of my heart for your visits to MOCO. I look forward to seeing you all back many more times as you will always be welcome. I also look forward to seeing many of you in person as I come back to Kingman for frequent visits.

Better days ahead!!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Time for another fun public meeting...

A friendly reminder that one of the proposed solar power plants will be a topic for a public hearing on the Mohave County Planning and Zoning agenda next Wednesday, September the 9th (item numbers 22A and 22B on page 7 at the link).

Below you will find a letter that was prepared by an associate of the firm that is seeking to develop the new renewable energy plant right here in our collective back yard. Please note that the following words are not mine, they come straight from the Hualapai Valley Solar group. You will see information that they are providing, including some response to the nonsense of the water worry warts and the crappy propaganda they continue to offer.

No matter what side of the issue you may already be on, please give the following a read. At the end of the post I will link to all the local elected officials from the city council of Kingman on up to the state legislative representatives. If you so choose, let them know your views on this very important issue.

The letter will be italicized and begins now...


September 1, 2009

To: Friends of the Hualapai Valley Solar Project near Red Lake

On Wednesday, September 9, the Mohave County Planning & Zoning Commission will review our General Plan Amendment and Area Plan. Development Services staff is recommending their approval. We encourage you to participate by signing a Letter of Support and/or by signing up to speak at the P&Z hearing – this is your chance to take an active role in shaping the future of Mohave County.

Many of you have heard me speak at our open houses and public meetings, or at events sponsored by the many civic organizations in Kingman. By now, you understand that our Project site near Red Lake is a world-class solar site – it is flat, very remote, has sparse vegetation and no protected species, and is adjacent to multiple transmission lines. Many proposed renewable energy projects are “like trying to push a square peg into a round hole”. But near Red Lake, everything fits, and this is something that the people of Mohave County should embrace! Besides the obvious benefits of developing U.S. renewable energy, reducing global warming, and reducing U.S. dependence on foreign oil (and therefore our foreign trade deficit), the Hualapai Valley Solar project will directly benefit Mohave County in many ways:

• New jobs – 1,500 at the peak of our 3-year construction period and 105+ during operation

• Substantial tax revenue – an estimated $4+ million per year in property taxes

• An estimated overall impact of more than $20 million per year, and this does not include:

o Revenue to the City of Kingman for the sale of effluent (treated wastewater)

o Revenue from tourist visits to our Visitors Center.

As a responsible developer, Mohave Sun Power will continue to build its stewardship in our community. To date, we have invested in many local relationships, including:

• Local consultants, engineers, subcontractors, utilities and suppliers

• Job training programs such as the new, county-wide Joint Technological Education District (JTED)

• Working as a member of the Kingman Area Chamber of Commerce, helping to identify the substantial opportunities for the local business community.

Critics of our Project continue to present misinformation about our water usage. The facts are:

• After 2 years of study, ADWR issued a Letter of Assured Water Supply that includes our site, for the equivalent of approximately 9,000 acre-feet per year. Our Project will use 2,400 acre-feet per year, effectively retiring (not using) 6,600 acre-feet per year.

• Errol Montgomery & Associates completed a hydrologic study showing that there are more than 15.7 million acre-feet of easily accessible water in the Hualapai Valley Basin within 1,200 feet of the ground surface, with even more below that mark.

• Of the 2,400 acre-feet per year we would use, we expect to purchase up to 1,700 acrefeet per year of effluent from the City of Kingman. A pipeline will bring the effluent from the new Hilltop Wastewater Treatment Plant to our site. The City currently has no other buyer for this effluent, which will likely be evaporated (as it is today) if we do not reuse it.

• If the new Hilltop plant and our Project were operational today, the result would be that we would pump roughly the same amount of water used by either of the 18-hole golf courses in the area (each with considerably less local economic impact than our Project).

• The Hilltop treatment plant is designed to support growth – any increase in the output of the Hilltop plant (due to population growth or redirecting other City wastewater) will likely result in our Project using 100% effluent for our cooling needs.

• Our Project recycles the cooling water more than 55 times, and we will continue to evaluate and implement other innovative techniques for conserving and reusing water.

For nearly a year, Mohave Sun Power has been working diligently and responsibly, developing the Project near Red Lake. During that time, the Project has been greatly improved through the feedback and constructive ideas presented by local residents.

Citizens should continue to scrutinize proposed projects, and support responsible developments in these difficult financial times. Critics often have the loudest voices, while supporters sit on the sidelines. We would like to turn that tide, to ensure that the best developments are realized.

Please consider signing a Letter of Support for the Hualapai Valley Solar project.

Thank you for your time and consideration,

Greg Bartlett, Project Director


The next part is up to you... not me... you. You may decide to let your county and city leaders know how you stand on this particular issue. You now have some information that you can use to help base your decision on -- at the very least somewhere to start if you want to question the information further. All of what comes next is on YOU.

Below I am linking email addresses to local elected leaders and other officials. Please take a moment, if you choose to do so, and let these folks know where it is you stand on this very important issue.

Mohave County officials...

District 1 Supervisor Gary Watson
gary.watson@co.mohave.az.us

District 2 Supervisor Tom Sockwell
Tom.Sockwell@co.mohave.az.us

District 3 Supervisor Buster Johnson
Buster.Johnson@co.mohave.az.us

City of Kingman officials...

Mayor of Kingman John Salem
jsalem@cityofkingman.gov

Vice Mayor of Kingman Janet Watson
jwatson@cityofkingman.gov

Council Member Carole Young
cyoung@cityofkingman.gov

Council Member Kerry Deering
kdeering@cityofkingman.gov

Council Member Ray Lyons
rlyons@cityofkingman.gov

Council Member Robin Gordon
regordon@cityofkingman.gov

Council Member Keith Walker
klwalker@cityofkingman.gov

City of Kingman City Manager Jack Kramer
jkramer@cityofkingman.gov

Arizona State Legislative Representatives...

Representative Doris Goodale
dgoodale@azleg.gov

Representative Nancy McLain
nmclain@azleg.gov

Senator Ron Gould
rgould@azleg.gov

Thank you to anyone that decides to take the time to let our elected leaders and officials know how we feel about these opportunities at this time. If you do decide to drop an email or a phone call, or simply a visit in person... tell 'em MOCO sent you.