Could Arizona be too expensive for retirees?

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Arizona used to be a mecca for retirees due in part to rising home prices. But Arizona’s cost of living and rising home prices have made this a tough place to retire.

Catherine Reagor, the senior real estate reporter at The Arizona Republic, recently said in an AARP article there may not be enough housing supply to meet the growing demand. She said new home buildings in the Valley are down from last year and still haven’t recovered from the crash of 2008 to 2011.

“We are too expensive for a lot of retirees,” Reagor said. “We were known for our affordable housing. Our median prices were below national medians. We are now more expensive.”

Builders aren’t expecting to ramp up during the next few months, which means the market is “bouncing back in sellers” favor because supply is so low.

Reagor said part of the reason prices aren’t dropping more is because supply is almost historically low. Many homeowners are concerned if they sell their home, they won’t be able to find another one to buy.

“If you own a home, you’re still in great shape,” Reagor said. “But buying one is tougher.”

Arizona used to be more affordable for retirees compared to Texas and Florida. Arizona is always in the top five states for drawing in retirees, but homebuilders have begun to build more homes in Texas and Florida due to the lower expenses.

“I have not seen a new community open in a while, and there are communities that still have space to build,” Reagor said. “If you look at our census data, there is a demographic shift. We’re drawing a lot more people from 18 to their 30s.”

Catherine Reagor, senior real estate reporter, The Arizona Republic

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