From Our Blog

Walt and Libby Interview with partner Fidelity National Title

One of the most common questions people ask me is how I started selling homes.  Chelsea Pietz with Fidelity National Title got the answer to that question (and a few more) at one of our recent events.  Libby Cohen, one of our top agents, talks about her start and shares some insight into the luxury market as well: [pb_vidembed title=”Walt and Libby Interviewed By Fidelity National Title” caption=”” url=”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9n9GBh3rZ28″ type=”yt” w=”480″ h=”385″] read more

Why Zillow is Wrong About Luxury Homes

One of the most popular real estate websites is Zillow.com, and one of their most popular features is their Zestimate. Using data from reported home sales, the Zestimate tries to estimate what a home should sell for given recent market activity. While this feature may work well for production homes, adhering to these estimates in our unique luxury market can be dangerous and extremely costly for both buyers and sellers. The first problem with Zestimates is that luxury homes vary tremendously in their amenities. Perhaps the backyard of one property was modeled after a Hawaiian resort, with pools, fountains, and tropical landscaping, while the neighbors still have a basic pool [...] read more

The TODAY Show peeks inside of Senator John McCain’s former home

The TODAY Show’s real estate contributor Barbara Corcoran mentioned our listing of John McCain’s home in Phoenix, Arizona. It is currently for sale again by the newest owners after being owned by Senator John McCain and his wife for twenty years. This was one of many homes the Senator owned, including his wife’s childhood home in Phoenix. read more

Luxury Pocket Listings In Arizona

Recently I wrote about why you should list your property in the MLS. Increased exposure around the world, efficiency, and public record keeping/rankings were the primary benefits. So why not list your home in the MLS? I’ve heard just about every reason you can imagine after 35 years of buying and selling luxury homes in Arizona. Here the top three reasons sellers have asked us to list their home as a pocket listing: 1: Accommodate Seller Privacy Many sellers of luxury homes are high profile individuals–business leaders, athletes, celebrities, and others who would rather keep their professional life separate from their personal one. 2: Security Luxury home owners often have valuable [...] read more

Luxury Market Sees 54% Drop in Short Sales

The Luxury Market of the Northeast Valley looking over Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Fountain Hills, Rio Verde, Arcadia, Biltmore, Cave Creek and Carefree has seen a 54% drop in short sales. Lender-owned homes are also down by 51%. Luxury home listing is still at a sufficient supply satisfying the present number of buyers making the market fairly balanced. Since last December sales numbers have been getting increasingly impressive and the strongest April for sales over $500,000 that has been seen since 2007. More sellers are encouraged by the improvement in the market cause a 10% increase in supply as well. read more

Home with a three-story tree house for sale in Arcadia

The Arcadia News recently wrote a great feature on one of our properties in their Arcadia Home section.  In addition to being one of Arcadia’s most historic homes with loads of character (including a train that rides around the property!), it also has a remarkable three-story tree house.  As the Arcadia News story explains, the tree house  grew along with the home’s current owners and is a great place for the kids (and/or grandkids) to adventure without going far from home. I think I’m going to add “ArboRealtor” to my business card. For more on its history, its many recent upgrades, and the tree house, see our property info page [...] read more

Why You Should List Your Luxury Home In The MLS

I have been meaning to write about pocket listings in Paradise Valley and Scottsdale, and felt inspired after reading an article about a brokerage trying to prevent its agents from using pocket listings for their luxury home. Generally speaking, pocket listings are properties for sale that are not in MLS, and brokerages (mine included) prefer to put homes in the MLS for a variety of reasons. When I started writing about pocket listings I thought I’d share some of the (often very good) reasons why people have asked me to pocket list their property. Keep in mind though, pocket listings aren’t right for everyone, and there are a lot of [...] read more

From Rubble To Bubble? Real Estate’s Recent Price Jumps

With the Suns and the Coyotes enjoying time off and the Dbacks just getting started, cocktail party chatter has invariably wandered back to real estate and these remarkable price increases over the past year.  Although my firm focuses on the luxury market, we keep a watchful eye on the regional and national trends, too.  Are we headed to a new bubble?  The headline-grabbing 30-plus percent increases certainly feel like it, but I’m not worried about a bubble. Keep in mind that few people even care about a bubble until it pops and everyone stops making money.  What matters is: are these price increases unsustainable and likely to lead to a [...] read more

Luxury Horse Properties In Arizona

The ponies are on everyone’s mind with the Kentucky Derby just a few days away, and CNBC is reporting that buyers are seeking new homes for themselves–and their horses.  In some markets, they estimate prices to be up 20 to 50 percent year over year.  While that’s a bit of a stretch for our market, as the economy and housing rebalance we are seeing more interest in homes with equestrian facilities. Here are three remarkable equestrian estates in Paradise Valley, Scottsdale, and Phoenix, so you can enjoy your horses year-round: The first is an incredible home at the foot of iconic Camelback Mountain in Paradise Valley.  The home is among [...] read more

WSJ House of the Day: Home With A Private Observatory

No, we haven’t started marketing properties to other solar systems–that is the view from one of our latest listings – currently featured as the Wall Street Journal’s House of the Day!  This one is especially unique: in addition to having a private observatory (where this image of the Andromeda Galaxy was made), a tunnel connects the home to the garage, and it is located on over 80 pristine high-desert acres.  While Prescott is a few miles outside our territory, we’re always on the lookout for Arizona’s Finest Properties and are happy to be co-marketing it with Kathleen Yamauchi, an agent local to Prescott. Click here for more including the full write-up [...] read more