ARIZONA NEWS

Solutions in sight for metro Phoenix housing crunch, experts say

May 21, 2021, 4:55 AM | Updated: 7:44 am

(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)...

(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

This story is part of KTAR News’ “Arizona’s Rising Real Estate” weeklong special series on 92.3 FM, online and our app.

PHOENIX — All week long, KTAR News 92.3 FM has brought you stories of buyers, builders and leaders who have described the agony of trying to find homes in an increasingly expensive market.

Experts offer no easy fixes, but fear not as they still offer solutions.

The real estate market will correct itself eventually, but not by much.

“When that time comes, I don’t know if it’s a year out, or six quarters out,” said Chris Camacho, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council.

It will be no easy feat. As of mid-May, only about 5,000 homes were listed in the Phoenix metro area with a median list price of $345,900.

The supply of homes available is down to eight days when it’s usually a six-month supply.

Additionally, metro Phoenix has a rush in population growth and housing demand — with fewer places to build.

“More affordable developments can be completed in a timely manner if we have the dirt to be able to build it,” said Katie Gentry, a research analyst with ASU’s Morrison Institute of Public Policy.

Gentry says solutions start with governments freeing up more public lands and speeding up zoning processes. She then called for more public pressure to build affordable, or low-income, housing.

“It’s not any less expensive to build a luxury apartment as it is to build an affordable development,” Gentry contended, but builders profit more from “luxury” digs.

So, Gentry wants the legislature to match the state’s low-income tax credits to the federal ones.

“It would build approximately 6,000 new affordable units each year, but still not nearly enough — we’re still short 135,000 units,” she said.

Camacho calls for more homebuyers’ credits and access to equity.

Meanwhile, Arizona desperately needs builders and skilled workers — and schools to train more of them — as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As the stimulus burns off, I hope that we head back to under 6% unemployment,” Camacho said.

He also puts forth an unpopular solution — raising mortgage interest rates to reduce buyer demand and increase housing supplies.

“The Fed is trying to help balance this, help people recover from this pandemic, and at the same time, create the right type of monetary policy to ensure that we see the right type of balanced growth going forward,” Camacho said.

An average 30-year home loan is now at 3%, a slight increase from mid-April, pointing to continued recovery of the economy from the pandemic recession. The rate for a 15-year home loan rose slightly to 2.29%.

Camacho foresees the supply chain and construction material prices stabilizing as the pandemic wraps up, slowing the surge in home prices.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

The two men killed in the crash were both from India and were both 19-years-old, according to Peori...

KTAR.com

2 dead, 2 more hospitalized after crash in Peoria near Lake Pleasant

Two people were killed and two others were hospitalized in a head-on collision in Peoria, near Lake Pleasant, on Saturday night.

2 hours ago

Phoenix experienced its first 100-degree day of the year on April 21, 2024. The daily average tempe...

KTAR.com

Phoenix records first 100-degree day of 2024

After a wet and cool start to the year, Phoenix experienced its first 100-degree day of the year on Sunday.

3 hours ago

Carlos Rivas is among the performers for this year's Scottsdale Jazz Festival. (Scottsdale Jazz Fes...

Damon Allred

Sounds of New Orleans hit Old Town for Scottsdale Jazz Festival

The jazz festival billed as "Arizona's Most Beautiful Jazz Event" is coming to the Scottsdale Civic Center in Old Town this week.

5 hours ago

Olivia Gerits (Chandler Police Department)...

KTAR.com

Missing 13-year-old Chandler girl found safe, 21-year-old man detained

A 13-year-old girl who was missing for more than a week was found safe and reunited with her family on Sunday afternoon.

7 hours ago

woman holds money and types into computer...

KTAR.com

Weekend wrap-up: Here are the biggest Phoenix news stories from April 19-21

From freeway construction to street gang indictments, here are the biggest Valley news stories from over the weekend.

7 hours ago

University of Arizona President Robert Robbins is seen walking on the Tucson campus....

Associated Press

Robbins: Fiscal year 2025 UArizona budget deficit may be reduced by $110M

Outgoing University of Arizona president Robbins has announced “encouraging news” about the college’s finances.

9 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines can get you smoothly from Phoenix to Frankfurt on new A330-900neo airplane

Adventure Awaits! And there's no better way to experience the vacation of your dreams than traveling with Condor Airlines.

...

DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

Desert Institute for Spine Care is the place for weekend warriors to fix their back pain

Spring has sprung and nothing is better than March in Arizona. The temperatures are perfect and with the beautiful weather, Arizona has become a hotbed for hikers, runners, golfers, pickleball players and all types of weekend warriors.

...

COLLINS COMFORT MASTERS

Here are 5 things Arizona residents need to know about their HVAC system

It's warming back up in the Valley, which means it's time to think about your air conditioning system's preparedness for summer.

Solutions in sight for metro Phoenix housing crunch, experts say