Whew, I don’t know about you, but I have a bit of 2020 burnout and it’s only July!
What’s next, an alien invasion?!
A zombie apocalypse?!
A chocolate shortage?!
I don’t have a crystal ball so it’s probably best if I just stick with what I know and that’s the Anthem, Arizona Real Estate market.
If this is your first time here, welcome! If you’ve been here before, thank you so much for coming back and spending your time with me. My name is Lindsay and I‘m a proud Anthem resident and your local REALTOR® with the Wise Move AZ Team at Realty ONE Group. On our YouTube channel and blog we have a lot of fun talking about all things Anthem and real estate every single Thursday, and we absolutely love having you along for the ride.
Our last market update video was released on January 16, 2020 and oh my goodness, if I could go back in time and talk to that girl, I would have a lot to say. So much has happened since then, and truthfully, we’re still trying to figure out what the long-term impact of COVID-19 will be on our Anthem real estate market, if any.
So bear with me, because making predictions about what’s going to happen in the real estate market under these conditions is kind of like trying to count all the grains of sand at the beach… on a windy day.
Assessing the Impact of COVID-19
We put a lot of thought into what statistics would be most valuable to you and how we can best assess the impact on our market to date. Carolynn and I are nerds when it comes to statistics, and there were so many different directions we could have taken this video. That being said, we also know that you probably don’t want to sit here all day while we just rattle off numbers.
We decided to look at a few key indicators throughout 2018 and 2019, to give a baseline of sorts. We’ll then compare that to the first half of 2020 and make our best educated guesses on what buyers and sellers can realistically expect in the latter part of 2020.
As you may or may not know, Anthem is a one-of-a-kind Master Planned Community just north of Phoenix. The community is made up of 7 distinct areas, all with their own unique charm and features. These areas include:
- Anthem Country Club
- Anthem Parkside East
- Anthem Parkside West (including Circle Mountain Ranch)
- Arroyo Grande
- The Landings
- And The Village
I think at this point we’ve done video tours of almost all of these areas. If that interests you, I will link to our Anthem Neighborhood Tour Playlist here.
We decided that this video would be WAY too long if looked at stats for each of these different areas, even if it would make our nerdy hearts sing. So, in the interest of time, the stats we’re sharing in this video will be for Anthem as a whole. If you would like these stats for a particular area within Anthem, let us know by comment below or by email at Team@WiseMoveAZ.com, and we’ll happily get that information to you.
Key Market Indicators
In this video we’ll be using the following key market indicators:
- The number of homes sold
- The average sales prices
- The average sales prices per square foot
- The average days on market
- And how close homes sold to their listing price
NUMBER OF HOMES SOLD
So, let’s take a look at the number of homes sold on a monthly basis.
This graph shows the number of homes sold each month in 2018 in peach, in 2019 in grey, and in 2020 in pink. In 2018 and 2019 the numbers showed a similar trend or cycle. We start the year relatively slow, with sales growing through to the end of the summer, and then tapering off through the end of the year.
You can see that sales were uncharacteristically low in April and May of this year. I feel that this can be directly attributed to COVID-19, the uncertainty it caused, and the fact that Arizona had an active ‘stay at home’ order in place from March 31 to May 15.
Although real estate was considered essential and business was permitted to continue, it certainly didn’t mean business as usual. For us to have a ‘normal’ number of closings in May, we would have needed a ‘normal’ number of people shopping for homes in April and that simply wasn’t the case.
That being said, you can see that the number of homes sold bounced right back to ‘normal’ levels in June. This was very exciting for us to see. Just based on the amount of activity we’ve personally seen in the market and other analyses we’ve read, we suspect we’ll see our normal high number of sales in July and August, with sales tapering down to the end of the year.
Personally, I think if we could see a bit more inventory hitting the market I think we could even exceed 2019’s sales in the latter part of 2020. The reason being, is that I think there is some pent-up demand from the homes that weren’t purchased in April and May. I really don’t feel that those buyers just disappeared. They may have been concerned about job loss, they may have been uncomfortable with travelling across state lines, or they may have just been turned off by the thought of buying a home in the middle of a global pandemic. Whatever their reason, I think that those buyers will be stepping back into the market as and when they’re comfortable doing so, and as long as Anthem has the supply, they’ll be ready to buy.
AVERAGE SALES PRICE
Next, let’s take a look at the average sale prices in Anthem, month over month.
When looking at this graph, I want you to focus on the dark purple line in the middle. This is the average sales price. The pink line on top is the high, while the grey line on the bottom is the low.
As you can see the average sales price in Anthem has by and large been increasing steadily since the start of 2018. Upon pulling these numbers I was very interested to see the spike in the average price in March of 2020. However, on further investigation this can largely be attributed to one sale in Anthem Country Club that exceeded $1 million. It is not indicative of a dramatic appreciation in prices in Anthem as a whole.
We started 2020 with an average sales price of roughly $363,000, and at the end of June we had an average of roughly $388,000. That suggests an appreciation of 6.8% in property values in the first half of 2020. Interestingly, this is even higher than the roughly 5% appreciation we saw in Anthem throughout 2019.
So, did all that uncertainty, global pandemic, stay at home stuff have an impact on our prices? At the moment, I would have to say that it appears not.
As homeowners in Anthem we’re excited at the thought of our homes appreciating year over year; however, as REALTORS® we know that prices can only grow so much before it starts to raise other concerns in the market. Our hope is that we’ll see a more modest and sustainable growth in prices through the remainder of 2020. That being said, I think we’ll still be in a strong Seller’s market for the foreseeable future. If you’d like to learn more about the differences between buyer’s and seller’s markets, and what it means for you, click to watch this video in the cards
AVERAGE SALE PRICE PER SQUARE FOOT
Average sales price only says so much, and it can’t really account for the difference between a mansion and a starter home. As REALTORS® we often like to look at the average price per square foot when looking at the state of the market. This can create a more level comparison between properties, although it’s by no means a perfect comparison.
On this graph, much like the last, I want you to focus on the gray line in the middle. This line shows the average sale price per square foot in Anthem month over month, while the pink line up top shows the high, and the peach line on the bottom shows the low.
As you can see prices grew at a stable and slower rate through 2018. They ramped up slightly in 2019, and then grew even more rapidly through the first part of 2020, with the exception of May 2020, which saw a slight dip.
2019 ended with an average price per square foot of $163.53, and in June 2020 we saw an average price per square foot of $176.75. That’s a difference of more than $13 per square foot. Much like the average sales price, we expect sale price per square foot to continue a steady increase through to the end of 2020. Again, our hope is that this increase will occur at a slower and more sustainable rate.
AVERAGE DAYS ON MARKET
Another interesting statistic is average cumulative days on market. This gives an indication of how long a home sat on the market before closing. It’s important to note that this statistic is also imperfect. If a home is marked as ‘Pending’ when it goes under contract it stops accumulating days on the market. However, if a property is marked ‘UCB’, ‘Under Contract Accepting Backups’, or ‘CCBS’, ‘Contract Contingent on Buyer Sale’ it continues to accrue days on market until the day of closing. This figure can still give us a good sense of how long homes are sitting on the market here in beautiful Anthem, Arizona.
As you can see on this graph, the days on market has fluctuated quite a bit since 2018. I would be hard-pressed to say that this follows any sort of annual pattern, and would be more inclined to say it’s more closely related to the amount of inventory, or in our case the lack of inventory. That being said, I think we can all agree that this graph shows a fairly consistent decrease in the average number of days on market since September 2019. What does this mean? It means that, on average, homes are selling faster when they hit the market today, than at the start of the year.
This might seem counter intuitive. Prices were higher AND the homes are selling faster! Doesn’t that go against basic economic principles? The short answer is no! The piece that’s missing in this picture is that inventory continues to be uncharacteristically low in Anthem. The low supply may have driven the prices up and forced people to make quicker decisions when they found the right house. Thus the continued decline in the average number of days on market.
We also couldn’t help but pointing out the leveling off in the average number of days on market in the last 3 months, i.e. in April, May, and June. This is because the number of days on market is probably getting about as low as it can! While cash buyers may be able to close on very short timelines, buyers who are getting a loan typically need at least 30 days. Additionally, since COVID hit, many lenders have been requiring 45-day closings. Well, in May the average was 45 days! This in theory means that homes were going under contract almost the day they went on the market! Anyways, I’m nerding out a bit over these numbers and the point that I’m trying to make is that I don’t think we’ll see this number get much lower unless there’s an influx of cash buyers and Seller’s that can accommodate uncharacteristically quick closings.
I suspect we’ll either see this number level off for the remainder of 2020, or we may even see a slight increase. Particularly, if we can get a bit more inventory in the latter half of the year.
LIST TO SALE PRICE RATIO
Lastly, people are always curious how close homes sell to their list price. In 2018, homes sold for an average of 98% of their list price. In 2019, homes sold for an average of 99% of list price. So far, in 2020, homes have again been selling for an average of 99% of their list price.
Some buyers may find this disheartening, as they feel like there’s little room to negotiate, and in some cases that may be true. But, it doesn’t account for the fact that some homes are priced too high when they first hit the market and they don’t sell until they’ve been reduced to within 1% of the market value. You’re probably sick of hearing us say this, but it just speaks to making sure that you are working with an agent who has local expertise and knows the value of homes in an area. This is important for both buyers and sellers.
Our Final Thoughts
Long story short, from where I sit right now, it appears that COVID has been only a blip on the radar when it comes to the Anthem real estate market. I’ve said it before on our channel, and I’ll say it again, we seem to be somewhat protected in Anthem due to the limited supply and continually strong demand. To date, the greatest impact appears to have been in April and May, and only when it came to the number of homes sold. Now, is it possible that there are longer lasting ramifications to our Anthem market? Yes, of course, but these may only be visible when we look backwards a year from now. I suspect the impact will be smaller than we originally feared. Hindsight is always 20/20. We eat, sleep, and breathe the Anthem real estate market, so you can count on us to keep a close eye on this.
Ultimately, it continues to be a good time to be a Seller in Anthem in 2020 and we suspect the same will be true for at least the remainder of this year. Buyers, this doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s a bad time for you to buy, it just means that you need to be diligent and informed. You need to be ready to make a move quickly when the right home hits the market, and you also need to make sure that you’re working with a REALTOR® with local expertise, who can ensure that you are not overpaying for the home.
So, there you have it! What do you think? Are you thinking about purchasing an Anthem home before 2020 is through? Or if you already live here, are you thinking about capitalizing on the strong seller’s market? Overall, it’s still a very exciting time to be living and working in the community we love so much. If you have any questions on how these numbers impact you specifically, please let me know. You can always email us at Team@WiseMoveAZ.com.
HOA Fee Guide
If all of this has you thinking, ‘yeah, I could consider a move to Anthem’, then you’ll definitely want to download our guide to HOA fees throughout Anthem. You can download your free copy here.
You Might Also Like…
Lastly, if you’d like to learn a little bit more about all of the different areas within Anthem, click to watch this video, or if you need to sell your home before you can buy in beautiful Anthem, click to watch this video where I share a step by step checklist of getting your home ready to sell in 30 days or less.
Enjoy those and I’ll see YOU next Thursday!