Are you moving to Phoenix? Are you worried about the summer heat? I’ve got you!
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 proud to be your Anthem, Arizona 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.
It’s more than Tumbleweeds and Mirages… We Promise!
If you’re moving to Phoenix and you’re nervous about adjusting to summers here, you are not alone! Most of our clients move to Anthem from out of state and from completely different climates. We get questions about preparing for Arizona summers all the time. I swear, it’s so much more than tumbleweeds and mirages.
If we look at the data collected by the National Centers for Environmental Information we see that the highs range from 94 to 106F in May through September, and in those 5 months we’re likely to see only 5 days of rain on average.
It also didn’t help that the summer of 2020 was officially the hottest summer on record for Phoenix (Source: ABC 15). As if we needed that on top of everything else 2020 had to offer…. just sayin’. If you want more information on the weather in Anthem, Arizona you can click to watch this video.
Anyways, long story short, it’s hot and it’s dry, but you’ve got this!
10 Things you Need to Survive Summer in Phoenix
In this post I am sharing 10 things that will really help you to transition into life in the Phoenix area, and will have you chillin’ through your first Arizona summer like an old pro.
Before we jump in, I want to say thank you to one of our long time subscribers, Gary, for this video/blog post idea! Gary, if you’re watching, hi and thanks! We had a lot of fun with this one.
#1: A Layered Wardrobe
Did you see the range of temperatures on the chart we showed earlier? The high in May is 94 and the low is 67. I don’t know about you but the clothing I want to wear at 94 degrees looks and feels and whole lot different than what I want at 67. Although the desert can be really hot during the day, as soon as that sun goes down it cools off really quickly. Additionally, you have to contend with the fact that even if it’s 107 degrees outside, it feels like 70 degrees when you walk into the grocery store.
I recommend purchasing breathable clothing that you can easily layer. I like to keep a sweater in my car at all times, just in case.
If you will be spending a lot of time outside you may want light breathable clothing that covers your arms and legs to protect yourself from the sun.
#2: Access to a Pool
We get a lot of questions about pools from our clients. Click here to watch the video where we talk about whether or not you should buy a home with a pool in Arizona. My point here is not to say that you need to buy a home with a pool, you definitely don’t. But I do think you need access to a pool, whether that’s your own pool, a friend’s pool, a community pool, or one at your gym.
On the hottest day of a Phoenix summer no amount of air conditioning feels as good as jumping in the pool does.
#3: Air Conditioning
A good reliable air conditioner is an absolute must in Phoenix. If you are buying a home, and the air conditioner is getting up there in age, I strongly recommend that you have the HVAC systems inspected prior to purchasing and then stick to a regular service schedule.
If you want more information on what inspections you should get when buying an Arizona home, click to watch this video.
Ceiling fans can also be a huge plus! If your home doesn’t have ceiling fans consider installing them. It can be a great way to cut down on your electricity bills in the summer.
#4: A Reliable Vehicle
If you are going to be traveling on the highways you need to have a reliable vehicle, and let’s face it, if you’re living in Phoenix, chances are you’re going to be driving on the highways.
It can be very dangerous if your car breaks down and you are stranded, even for a short time on the side of the road in the summer. Make sure that you ALWAYS have drinking water in your car and that you always have your phone with you in case you need to call for help.
The best thing to do is to stay on top of routine maintenance and checks. You also want to have a working AC in your car, because trust me, when it’s 114 outside there is no amount of rolling down your window that will make it doable.
#5: Vehicle Storage
Speaking of a reliable vehicle, you also need to have somewhere to keep that vehicle that is out of the direct sunlight when possible. Ideally, you want to have a garage that you can park your vehicle in. If not, a covered car port will also help. When you don’t have either, I strongly recommend that you use sunshades in your windshield. Honestly, anything you can do to protect your vehicle from the sun in the long run will help. Not only will it make the car a little bit cooler to get into, but it will also extend the life of your vehicle.
One funny thing that just popped into my head was, when I moved to Anthem I thought I wouldn’t have to wash my car as often because it doesn’t snow and it hardly rains, right? Well, it turns out, you end up washing your car just as often because of all the dust.
This is an absolute MUST. Buy it in bulk, make it part of your morning routine, and always carry extra. Seriously, this is one that I can’t stress enough. I know it can be a pain, but take the time to find a sunscreen that you like and use it.
In addition to sunscreen, as I mentioned at the beginning of this video, using hats and clothing as a barrier from the sun can be really helpful.
Also, as you settle into life in Arizona I recommend that you add seeing a dermatologist to your regular health and wellness routines. Depending on where you’re moving from, you may be exposing yourself to a lot more UV rays, and I don’t want anyone taking chances with skin cancer.
#7: A Good Moisturizer
We joke around that Arizona is a dry heat and that makes it more bearable. Now, whether or not that’s true, or it’s just something we say to make ourselves feel better, I’m not sure, but I do know that it is DRY here.
Obviously, hydrating from the inside by drinking lots of water is a must, but I have found that’s still not enough. You need to find a moisturizer that works for you, and much like the sunscreen you need to incorporate it into your daily routine.
Personally, I have been using Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel Cream and it has been working really well for me. This big bottle has lasted me forever, and although it works really well I am looking for a lower waste alternative, so if I find one that I really like I will definitely pop it into the comments for you.
#8 An Insulated Water Bottle
Speaking of hydrating from the inside out, you shouldn’t be going anywhere during an Arizona summer without water in hand. You’re going to want to get a big insulated water bottle or tumbler because hot car water is gross. I got a tumbler from Costco. It came in a pack of two, so one for me, and one for my husband. I think it was $20 for the set, and they are amazing! I can put ice in there at the start of the day and still have ice when I get home at the end of the day. Not only will having an insulated cup or bottle help to keep your water cold or at least cool, but it will also help to cut down on disposable bottles, so that’s a big win.
Anyways, the big thing is making sure that you stay hydrated and finding a system that works for you. I also want to say that while drinking lots of water is important, you want to make sure you’re keeping your electrolytes up too. Since Arizona is so dry, we often don’t realize how much we are losing in sweat.
#9: Indoor Hobbies
One of the big perks of living in Arizona is all the outdoor activities, like hiking, mountain biking, and golfing, but on the hottest days of the summer it isn’t safe to spend prolonged periods of time outside. For example, I don’t recommend that you hike Camelback Mountain when it’s 110 outside.
For those really hot days it’s great if you have some indoor hobbies. Personally, I like to plan some of our indoor home improvement projects for the hot summer months. If we get these projects out of the way when it’s too hot outside, it just means less work to do later in the year when the weather is perfect for sitting out!
#10: An Escape Plan
I don’t know what it will be like for you, but every year, I get to point near the end of the summer where I hit a wall. It just feels like it has been a little too hot for a little too long. In those moments, it’s good to have an escape plan! I don’t mean moving away from Phoenix, but I do recommend planning visits to some of the cooler parts of the state during the hottest months.
I think Arizona as a whole can get a bad rap for being too hot in the summer, but the truth is with just a few hours driving you can be in Flagstaff which has a totally different climate. There are so many places to explore in Northern Arizona when you need a break from the heat. Make a list of places you want to see and plan to tour some of them when you just need a break from the summer heat in Phoenix.
The summers in Phoenix may be hot but they are definitely doable. If you are considering a move to the Phoenix area you may want to download our free guide: ‘Moving to Arizona: 10 Reasons to Choose Anthem’. You can grab your free copy here.
If you’d like to hear my take on the pros and cons of living in Arizona click to watch this video, or if you’d like information on the pool versus no pool debate when it comes to buying an Arizona home, click to watch this video.