Bobby Lieb

DRE: BR007861000

(602) 376-1341
(602) 230-7600 (Office)

Bobby's Blog

July 30, 2014: North Central is indebted to developers

Posted On: February 10th, 2015 6:26PM

I want us to flashback five or six years ago and remember the pain in our guts when our home values were at an incredible low value and about 60 percent of our home values were under water.  Unfortunately, some of our friends and family members lost their homes to the banks.

There was doubt about how long it would take to recover but the North Central area had a strong turnaround and although  we are not back at pre-2005 prices, we have come a long way. We certainly are in a great location with excellent schools, tremendous restaurants and top retail stores. I feel there is a common factor as to why our home prices have almost doubled in the past 3-4 years and we owe a large thanks to the home builders/ developers who believed in our neighborhoods as much as we did. Back in the 1970s, the restaurant Willy and Guillermo's at Central and Missouri was torn down for new homes, as was the Ambassador Hotel at 4th Avenue and Maryland, which is now a luxury gated subdivision.

In the past few years, two of my clients, Porchlight Homes and Magee Builders, have built more than 30 new homes in the corridor ranging in price from $370,000 to $780,000 and increasing the per-square-foot price to close to $250. Just a few years ago we were lucky to get more than $175 per square foot but now we are creeping up to the $300 per foot prices, thanks to two incredible homes built on Central Avenue and Lamar by Starion Custom Residences, who tore down an old home that sat on an acre. I have not confirmed the exact square-foot price with the builder but I feel the masterpieces he created are worth every bit of a $300-plus-per-foot price. Another new builder in our area, CE Residential, currently has two new homes under construction on Myrtle, just east of Central Avenue, for around $1.5 million. An old home was demolished, making way for these fabulous homes. CE Residential also built a new home at Lamar and 2nd Street that sold for $980,000.

Another project that I will be involved in will be located at 325 E Maryland, which replaced a 70-year-old home that should have been condemned many years ago. There will be three new homes, soon to be under construction, at that location. There are many new clients of mine who want new homes and are moving here from other parts of the Valley only to buy a new home. I know I mentioned in another one of my monthly articles that change is good, especially when it pertains to our Central Corridor. I will be representing more than 25 new custom homes in our area over the next 18 months. I am seeing more and more buyers moving here from Paradise Valley and Arcadia in order to be closer to work and schools. These buyers will only move here for homes in the $550,000 and higher range that are brand new or remodeled throughout.

Please be supportive of these  developers as they take us to a newer financial level. Remember CHANGE is good for a  neighborhood and please know that these builders are building homes that have current zoning in place and they want their homes to conform to the neighborhoods in which they are being built.

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June 17, 2014: You Get What You Pay For

Posted On: February 10th, 2015 6:21PM

I had a client last week who placed a home in escrow near 28th Street and Camelback, which
had brand new floors, counter tops and cabinets; all bathrooms remodeled; a new roof and new air
conditioning. The home was a fix and flip by an investor and seemed like a great home until...WE
HAD AN INSPECTION...that revealed the roof was not new,the AC was not new and basically the
home was in poor condition and he canceled. I cannot tell you how many homes that I have seen like this in the past three or four years where investors,who are not licensed, put together what we call a “lipstick remodel” that looks good from the inside until you have that inspection. There are some amazing licensed contractors in our market, so be careful who you choose to remodel your home or in choosing a home that has a licensed contractor who did the remodel because they will stand behind the work.

The other problem that I have seen in the past four years is all the homes that had their roofs replaced because of hail damage. About 75 percent of these roofs were replaced by imposters who issued useless roof warranties. Most of these roofers were storm chasers who go from city to
city preying on desperate people. My take in all these stories is you get what you pay for, so be

My suggestion is to investigate the contractorseither through the Better Business Bureau or ask for references. The best overall scenario, if you can afford it, is to go with a new home where the state mandates certain warranties that builders must offer their clients, such as one year for cosmetics and two years for any structure issue, along with manufacturer warranties for appliances, roof and air conditioning. I am very fortunate to represent two incredible builders who have called North Central their home for the past two years and will continue to build here for at least two more years. One is Magee Builders, who has built or remodeled more than six North Central homes and currently has a brand-new home located at 7220 North 15th Ave., which is listed for $784,000 and sits on a half-acre lot. Magee has at least 15-18 more new North Central homes either under construction or in the planning stages. The next homes will be completed by the end of July and include 405 E. Montebello, priced around $900,000 and including 3,400 square feet on a 22,000 square-foot lot; and 5506 N. 2nd Street. priced in the mid $700s and including 3,050 square feet with a three-car garage. Magee Builders are Randy Rochford, Brian Magee and Scott McLean.

The other builder that I am representing is Porchlight Homes, which developed a 5.5 acre horse property located on 7th Avenue between Maryland and Bethany Home Road. It is a new gated subdivision, originally consisting of 15 homes which is now down to three spec homes: two at 3,500 square feet and one at 3,150 square feet. All three will be active on the market in mid July. Porchlight has a second gated 10-home subdivision located on Central Avenue just north of Northern Avenue. In just six weeks, eight of  the homes have been sold and the two remaining specs with be active the first of July. NORTH CENTRAL LOVES NEW HOMES. Go new if you can afford to.

My heavy condolences to the family of Herb Sperber, who for many years owned a tuxedo store at 7th Avenue and Campbell called Lad T Dad, which later became Tux and Tails. Herb dressed all of us for proms, weddings, premiers and special functions. I was more nervous on my wedding night, worried about my losing or tearing my tuxedo than I was about the wedding party, which consisted of 250 wild animals. Herb made all of us feel and look like a million dollars and we are all better off for having him in our lives. I still own a tux from Tux and Tails but, unfortunately, it has shrunk over the years! Thanks, Herb, for making me feel special for many a night wearing your clothes. The Valley was a better place with your presence in our lives.

Additionally the name Herb is very special to my brother and me because that was our dad's name. I lost another longtime friend this month, Bob Warren, who was in my wedding party and a great customer for many years at the Jockey Club. I enjoyed Bob's company at my club for many nights and years and even playing golf with him. Bob, Mary Ann and I and all of our Jockey Club cardholders will dearly miss you.
See you guys in San Diego!

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