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Category: Phoenix/Scottsdale Real Estate Blog

Phoenix Water Crisis and Arizona’s Sustainability

Arizona is the fastest-growing state in the western part of the United States since 2006. With that comes a lot more population and the question that starts to rise is this; “What’s the visibility and the sustainability of that heading to Arizona’s future?” People question whether the natural resources can sustain the entire population growth that is currently happening. Since people question it, today, we’ll be covering Arizona’s sustainability and the Phoenix water crisis.

From what I’ve heard, everyone has a good outlook on where this city is going for the future, so let’s start with the population. Currently, Arizona is one of the fastest-growing states in the entire country and that’s no secret post covid. Let’s go back to the 1940s. In the 1940s, roughly 500,000 people were living in the entire state. Now, Arizona has 7.6 million people in 2022. That is a huge increase, but the biggest increase decade over decade was from the 50s to the 1960s. The reason why we believe that the biggest attribution to that was the dimension of central air conditioning. Central air was invested before the 50s but didn’t become mainstream and affordable and available in buildings and houses until the late 50s going into the 60s.

Do you want to guess what the number one resource Arizona lacks the most… you guessed it, WATER! That’s why we are discussing the Phoenix water crisis. The water issue here today is the biggest long-term threat that Phoenix and Arizona face, and it more than likely will not be going away anytime soon. For example, in Casa Grande, the water supply is not guaranteed for a certain type of product class whether you own a single-family home or any other type of development. Depending on which city you’re located in, water can be more of a scarce issue. There is a good amount of water now here in Phoenix and almost all the water used in Phoenix gets reclaimed and reused. One major plant release 52 million gallons of water a day into its wetland areas and canal systems. The great thing about those is that they are sitting ready to be used as they go through water treatment plants.

Certain reservoirs are like wetlands where it doubles up as a wetland for animals too. It’s a holding pot to be reused for human beings and then gets recycled back into this whole system. Arizona supplies 23 billion gallons to a nuclear power plant and 16 billion gallons of water are allocated to crops. Only 14% of single-family homes in Phoenix have grass, so that helps cut back on the water more too. The reason why Phoenix only uses two-thirds of the water in the whole state is that they are putting so much technology into water-saving methods and issues and the residents overall are accommodating to understand not to use a surplus of water.

Do you think we’re in a Phoenix water crisis? Watch the video above for more information!

The Real Cost Of Living In Scottsdale Az

Are you wondering how much it costs to live in the golf mecca of the world? Well, I’m glad you asked! Scottsdale Arizona was named the most livable city in the US and we are going to discuss with you what the overall cost of living in Scottsdale Az is. Now, arguably, the number 1 suburb in the greater Phoenix metro area is the city of Scottsdale Arizona. The golf here is AMAZING, from the resort golf courses to desert golf courses to the championship golf course, to one the PGA tour uses at the waste management phoenix open, it is amazing to golf here. What is the cost of living in a city that is pretty cool with its climate, entertainment, and golf, I’m glad you asked! We’ll break down the terms of cost of living rated off a score of 100.

To describe Scottsdale, it’s very rectangular and there are three main sections, North Scottsdale, Central Scottsdale, to South Scottsdale. It’s not very wide but landlocked with surrounded native American land and mountain views. Here are a few fun facts about Scottsdale, the population is 263,000 people and you have a median age of 46. The median age for most cities across the country is 37. I live here in Scottsdale and love that there are a lot of young, successful people, businesses, people, teachers, families, retirees, to small kids, we have it all. It’s a very family-friendly city to live in.

Now let’s break down the overall cost of living in Scottsdale az. Scottsdale comes in at 133, in comparison to other cities in the US. Groceries come in at a rating of 103. It’s a little bit more than the average US city, but here are some further statistics. Milk would turn out to be $3.24 a gallon, bread $3.03 a loaf, eggs $2.52 for a dozen, and chicken, around $4.50 a pound. Depending on where you do your grocery shopping, prices can range! Now let’s talk about restaurants. If you go out to have a meal, a meal at an inexpensive restaurant would range from about $13 for two people, and mid-range, around $77.50 for two people. Likewise, depending on where you go, prices can range. If you have children, this one’s for you! Childcare in Scottsdale is going to run you in the ballpark of $900/month. If you chose to put your kids in an international primary school, those will run you around $4000/month.

Let’s jump over to housing next. The overall cost of living in Scottsdale az for housing comes at a decent amount more in Scottsdale than it does in other parts of the state of Arizona. The state of Arizona’s housing score comes in at 107. Scottsdale comes in at 203 because there is only two percent of land available that’s private owner to be built on. In the future, that will come at a premium. Right now, in the center of Scottsdale, an acre of land is going to run about $950,000 just for the land. If you can build a house and go big enough with it based upon the cost of building, you can easily sell it from $3 million to $4 million. However, if you’re looking to rent, a one-bedroom condo or apartment comes in at $1414 for the monthly cost. The only other suburb that is more expensive when it comes to housing than Scottsdale is the town of Paradise Valley.

Jumping from housing, we’re going to be talking about the cost of utilities. When it comes to housing utilities, electricity on average is $154/month, depending on the size of your house. If you have a good-sized house that has three a/c units with some good-sized ceilings, you’re probably going to be looking in the ballpark of $600/month. With a lot of hot weather comes a lot of A/C usage. Electric companies in Scottsdale allow you to modify your electric payment so that it’s about the same for the whole year. Internet is another important part of utilities. Nowadays, the internet in Scottsdale is going to run you in the ballpark of $78/$80 a month for high-speed internet. There’s Centrelink and cox, which are two major providers in Scottsdale az.

I’ve mentioned that Scottsdale is a very family-friendly area. Scottsdale has 95 schools throughout the city area. Scottsdale unified school district is rated 39% higher than the average state Arizona school. There is a wide range of different options for schools such as charter, private, and public schools. Depending on how many kids you have, your income range may be very important to the overall cost of living in Scottsdale az. The income in Scottsdale is a little higher than most other areas of that the state. The income per capita is $56,800, whereas the US average per capita income is 32,000. The unemployment rate is only 4.7% whereas the US unemployment rate currently is just a little over 6%. The great thing about Scottsdale is the big employment center, especially closer to Old Town.

Whether you’re looking to move to Scottsdale, or you were just wondering what the overall cost of living in Scottsdale was, we are your number 1 resource for Everything Phoenix. Thanks for reading! If you have any additional questions, reach out at info@kellycookhomes.com or call us at 480-442-9868!

The REAL Truth About Living in Phoenix

Whether you want to buy a second home or invest in Phoenix real estate, we will be discussing the REAL truth about living in Phoenix! You can search the internet and find all kinds of pros and positive things about phoenix, as well as probably any other city but sometimes people want to let you know about some of the little intricacies that maybe aren’t the best things about that city. Now, let’s get to the dirty little secrets that Phoenix has to offer.

To start our list, if you google the school system in Arizona in terms of public-school systems, it’s not the greatest. It ranked in the bottom 10 most of the time across the country. On the contrary, there will always be good schools too. You would find most of them located in Scottsdale. Whether you chose to put your kids in private or public school, there are plenty of options, anywhere you go! If you are living in Phoenix and don’t have kids, then this won’t concern you.

Here’s an interesting secret about living in Phoenix, there are no basements or lack thereof. I have come across basements in the state, but they are a rare commodity. We are seeing a large majority of people moving into Phoenix from out of state, where basements would be very common. The homes I grew up in always had basements, so it was an interesting transition not having that additional space in the house. The perks about having a basement are that they’re cooler in the summer and provide additional storage. In Arizona, there are different subdivisions and homes in different parts of the cities that have basements. But if you are on the hunt for one for your next home, it’s always a plus to go through a realtor!

Another fact about Phoenix living is that we are the leading state in the country for windshield replacements. One thing I like to say to Arizonians is to make sure your car insurance has free windshield replacements! I’ve been down here for 17 years, and I’ve had my windshield replaced numerous times. We don’t have to deal with snow, which is a plus but because of the rain and living in the desert, there are rocks and pebbles on the roads that get stuck in the tires and shoot right up to hit anyone’s windshield. A plus side to living in Phoenix is that we have a lot of mobile windshield replacement companies that will come out and just do the work for you.

A fifth fact about living in Phoenix, depending on the type of person you are, you may be aware of the Arizona gun laws out there. Arizona is known as the wild wild west and whether you’d want to be involved, it is a common practice for people to carry. By the time you’re 18, you do not need a permit to carry. If you’re between the years of 18 and 20, it has to be an open-carry firearm. If you are 21 or older, you still don’t need a permit to file with the state of Arizona. Depending on where you stand with gun laws, you have the freedom here to car one in your car or even around your waist.

Moving onto number four, for living in Phoenix, the air quality is poor here. As a state, overall, the air is somewhat of poor quality. Phoenix sits down in a valley, which means we are surrounded by mountains. As beautiful as that may be, you must be aware the air does not move a lot. It just sits in the valley, causing potential lung conditions. If you live in Phoenix, the summertime and all the heat play a huge role in the poor air quality. So again, if you have issues with breathing, Arizona may not be the best place to live. A little fact about us, we are ranked in the top ten for the poorest air quality for major cities across the country. Two main things that cause the ranking to be either good or bad are the ozone, which is a kind of smog, and particle pollution.

This one may come as a “shocker”, but the heat is a reason not to move to Arizona for some people. If you do not like the heat, living in Phoenix may be a rough one for you. Everyone knows it’s hot in the desert and some would prefer that. I’m honestly not a huge fan because Nebraska is where I originated, and that heat did not compare to the heat of Arizona. The upside about the heat here is that it’s dry. So, pick and choose your battles and ask yourself what’s way worst, dry heat or wet heat. I would always pick dry heat over the humidity that fills the air in the summer. July and August are the two months that are primarily the hottest here, but outside of that, the weather is phenomenal all year round. People that live in Phoenix are like lizards because their blood will thin, the longer they live here. Remember to stay hydrated!!

Coming in at number two for the real truths about living in Phoenix is the actual propositions and pieces of legislature that Arizona passed. In November of 2020, Proposition 207 was put into place for the passing of recreational marijuana and making it legal and Proposition 208 allows additional revenue to go towards the educational system for the state of Arizona. One thing you’ll notice is that dispensaries have popped up now after the passing of Proposition 207. If you are 21 years older, you can go buy it on any given day. The purchase of marijuana is taxed, so that will be a big revenue driver for the state. As for the additional revenue going to the Arizona schooling systems, that may not always be a good thing. Sometimes the tax-funded dollars don’t make it to the places they need to go because of bureaucracy. Proposition 208 is an additional state income tax on high-income earners. If you are a single person making $250,000 a year or a joint couple making $500,000 a year, there will be an additional 3.% on the already 4.5% state tax rate, coming out at a total of 8% percent.

Lastly, here is the truth or ugly truth about living in Arizona, but Arizona is brown. Yeah, there is just not a lot of green here in Phoenix. If you like a green state, then Arizona is not the right place for you. If you are flying into Sky Harbor Airport, you can see the whole landscape and you’ll notice the lack of green Phoenix has. A while back, I saw a sign from an environmentalist saying he was a big proponent of the western landscape that said that people have to stop associating beauty with only greenery and realize that beauty is also in the west. Most landscaping with homes blends very well with the natural desert and even most homes are a brown or tan color. If you go North towards Prescott and Flagstaff, you’ll find greenery and they have all the normal seasons. In the Phoenix valley, we only really have two seasons.

Thank you for reading about the real truths about living in Phoenix Arizona. I know people have various opinions about what it really like to live in Phoenix, but these are the truth I’ve seen since moving to Phoenix. If you all are looking to move here or even buy a second home, please reach out to us at info@kellycookhomes.com for more information!

Scottsdale Golf Course Homes – All About Them!

Do you like golfing? Do you want to have nice weather year-round to enjoy the sport of golf? Well, look no further, today, we will be discussing Scottsdale golf course homes! We will be discussing further the top five reasons as to why you may want to own a home on a golf course right here in Scottsdale.

Reason number five to own a Scottsdale golf course homes are because of the amenities. Most golf club communities will have clubhouses, which have entertainment areas, pools, spas, and many more fun ways to get involved while living inside the community. It’s a great way to meet like-minded people like you!

A fourth reason to own a Scottsdale golf course homes is for safety. Now, some people way not care about this as much, but like myself, I would prefer to live in an area where it’s safer for my family and I. Golf course homes are typically gated, sometimes even guard gated, and are usually in areas that don’t have much crime. Depending on whether you have a family or want the extra protection yourself, golf course homes in Scottsdale are the way to go.

A third reason to live in a Scottsdale golf course homes is that you get a much bigger backyard than most standard homes in Scottsdale. Now, I’m not necessarily saying that you will get a huge lot with any golf home you purchase, but you will more than likely have a larger backyard with the home. They usually come with views and additional privacy, which is always a plus side for people who live here in Arizona. Coming from the Midwest, people are used to having chain links or wooden fences, but backyards for golf course homes will have a metal fence or no fence at all to create an open feeling.

A second reason to live in a Scottsdale golf course homes is for the resale value. It’s more than likely in a golf community, they won’t be building any more homes in the area, so competition to owning Scottsdale golf course homes is very high. You would be in a prime location and location is normally one of the higher selling points for homes. You’re insulated when the market goes down and have higher appreciation rates when the market goes up. Golf course lots here in Scottsdale are in high demand with short supply. I mean, you can’t beat the Scottsdale weather in all its glory.

Alright, drumroll, please! The number one reason to live in Scottsdale golf course homes is for the ability to walk outside your backyard and play golf. This is a huge perk for avid golfers. Now, you don’t have to be a great golfer to live in one of these amazing golf communities but you sure can’t beat the views, the amenities, and the lifestyle Scottsdale golf course homes bring. Any questions you may have with buying a golf course home in Scottsdale, please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions. I can be reached at info@kellycookhomes.com or call at 480-227-2028!

Old Town Scottsdale – All You Need to Know!

Old Town Scottsdale is one of the most well-known areas in the greater state of Arizona. You have a little bit of everything here, from the entertainment district to the arts district to the Scottsdale Fashion Square, this is the place to be for all entertaining. There are world-class restaurants and shops, and even real estate is a hot commodity. As you’re walking through Old Town, you’ll notice there’s a good number of mom-and-pop shops. They’re some of the more authentic shops you’ll find in the area. They have a little flair of the old west to them, which seems fitting because Old Town Scottsdale is a cowboy town.

Not only is Scottsdale known as America’s most livable city but it’s America’s most westernmost city. There are plenty of resorts like retro ones. The Hotel Valley Ho is one of the more well-known hotels in America and it’s more mid-century modern. Marriott, Hilton, and several different properties are within arm’s reach of the downtown area. The Ritz-Carlton launched a very luxurious project where they are building luxury residences, such as villas and estate homes. There is a big market down here for vacation rentals, with a wide variety of VRBO and Airbnb. You’ll find that most single-family homes do not have restrictions on renting the houses out for a short period of time. For buying real estate, prices down here for single-family homes will range about the high 300 mark all the way up to the multi-million-dollar mark depending on the size, location, and proximity. Condos will start at the low 300 mark all the way multi-million-dollar penthouse mark in Scottsdale. The Optima Camel View and Scottsdale Waterfront are two great examples of this. If you’re willing to make the next move in purchasing your next home or investment, then the Old Town Scottsdale area is worth exploring as a great option.

Old Town Scottsdale is vibrant in many ways, from the nightlife, to activities, events, golf clubs, restaurants, shops, all of it is well worth exploring. Give us a call if you would like to know anything more about Old Town as a whole. We are your number one real estate resource, please reach out to us at info@kellycookhomes.com or call me at 480-227-2028.

Reasons Not to Move to Phoenix

Phoenix is currently one of the top real estate markets in 2021 going into 2022, but have you ever wondered if there are any reasons not to move to Phoenix? Being a real estate specialist, I get to learn and understand the ins and outs of cities around the Valley. Today, we’ll be covering 11 reasons why you may not choose to move to Phoenix!

I believe Phoenix has way more good than bad but there are a few things that you’ll want to know about when living or moving to Phoenix. To start it off, Phoenix has a lack of greenery. We are technically located in the Sonoran Desert and desert landscaping is the norm. There are a lot of cacti and desert natural plants, so you won’t be seeing a lush yard or a lush farm field full of grass. If you go north towards Flagstaff, you will see a bit more greenery than here in the valley, but that may be a reason not to move to Phoenix.

The number 10 reason not to move to Phoenix in the summer, because it is HOT! I mean like burn your skin off hot! Phoenix summer is like no other. I like to joke and say we have three seasons here, cool summer, warm summer, and hot summer. There is no way around the heat of the summer here, you must at least wear 50 spf. However, you do get more and more used to it as the blood in your body thins out. Depending on your preference of climate, that is the norm here.

A ninth reason to think about not living in Phoenix is that there are block walls in the backyard. The vast majorities of homes have backyards with brick walls. I came from the Midwest where everybody has chain link fences or some wood fences for more privacy. Some walls are regular old block gray concrete, or you have stucco on the wall which looks kind of nice. Either way, if it’s something you’re not used to, that’s what the vast majority of properties in Arizona have. Now, some properties have view fencing, like wrought iron if your property backs up to a water retention area or looking down towards the city or mountains. I would consider this detail minor but it’s something worth sharing!

The eighth reason not to move to Phoenix is because of the creepy crawlies. You probably know all about the rattlesnakes and scorpions and black widows and other creatures. It’s what Arizona is known for. Out of the 16 years, I’ve lived here, I’ve only seen three rattlesnakes and only 1 scorpion. They’re out there but it’s not very often where you cross their paths in everyday life. Having good pest control is a must to get rid of their food source. You’ll see some other wild creatures, such as javelinas and coyotes, and even have termites.

Here is an interesting one, Arizona has a lack of water filtration systems, and because of that, there is a lot of hard water in Arizona homes. My wife mentions that it’s bad for washing your hair. Normally, those systems would turn the water soft with less calcium but are found predominately in other parts of the country. The sixth reason you may not want to move to Phoenix is that a lot of communities look the same. Now we all know that exists everywhere in the country, but Phoenix is home to a lot of major home builders that buy large parcels of land. In those specific communities, builders will only give four or five different floor plans, but they build thousands of homes. If you want something custom, it’ll be more challenging to find in the Phoenix area. Most homes will have that brown earth tone exterior.

Continuing with the list, have you ever heard of valley fever? Valley fever sounds scary, but it only is a fungal infection that affects your lungs. If you’re in the backyard digging dirt or ever around a construction site, all the dust you breathe in causes valley fever. We’re surrounded 360 degrees by mountains and the dust likes to collect in the valley. If you ever have it, you may have to go on medication, but it is nothing severe to the body. Valley fever comes in as the fifth reason you may not want to move to Phoenix

The 4th reason not to move to Phoenix is because of allergies. Now if you are coming from the Midwest or even the east coast, you may think because Phoenix is in a desert, you won’t have any problems with allergies. Now, I’m one of the lucky ones that don’t have any allergies, so I feel very lucky. Now, the main culprit for allergies in Arizona is the Palo Verde tree. It’s a green tree, as the name suggests, and the branches split off and eventually bloom. Their pollen floats around in the area and causes a ton of people to sneeze. 

Now we are hitting the top 3 reasons you may not want to live in Phoenix. The third reason is Phoenix having a lack of seasons. If you are someone who likes having 4 seasons a year, this is not the place for you! We only really have two seasons here, cooler hot and hotter hot. The summer is so hot and you either must suck it up by being outside for a bit or run to the nearest indoor place. Our sports teams shut down between June and July, and during that time, that’s when families go on vacations with their families. The other nine months out of the year, you’ll find sports more popular with kids and professional teams. The second reason is because of the poor air quality. Believe it or not, Phoenix is surrounded by mountains, which causes air pollution to stay in the valley. There is smog and higher pollution advisory alerts. It’s usually pretty good in most parts of the year but compared to other cities, we end up lower on the scale. 

The number one reason you may not want to live in Phoenix Arizona is the snowbird drivers! They come here a lot between November and April, and you’ll notice the difference. The roads have more traffic, and it is a little more difficult to book or reserve things. The driving sometimes can get a little hectic, one, because there are more vehicles on the road, and two, they don’t normally have the best reaction time. Even though they can be the worst, they do bring over $2 billion of revenue for the state. We couldn’t live without you, but please work on your driving. 

These are the top 11 reasons not to live in the state of Arizona! We have so many people contacting us who are moving to the Scottsdale/Phoenix area, and we are so happy to make the transition easier for them. If you have any additional questions about all the things that come with living in Phoenix, Arizona, reach out to us at info@kellycookhomes.com

Best Places to Live in Phoenix

Have you ever thought about moving to the state of Arizona but have no idea where to live? You’re in luck because we will be discussing the top 10 places to live in Arizona! All these places are based on the KRI (Kelly Rating Index) rating system and the research I’ve done and my own experiences of living here and being a realtor for 16 years. We’ll be judging off 5 factors – housing affordability, entertainment, employment, commute, and school systems. 

Coming in at number 10 in the city of Peoria. Peoria is in the northwest corner of the valley, being a very long and newer suburb. It has a lot of great things, such as Lake Pleasant, which is one of the largest lakes accessible to people who live here. Peoria comes in at 4/5 for housing affordability since prices have gone up and the affordability is above that 100-median index for the housing. Entertainment comes in 3/5 because it’s not a nucleus for entertainment. Employment also comes in at 3/5 because there isn’t a huge employment center in Peoria. The commute would be 4/5 since it’s easier to get around the city since they’ve done a great job with the grid pattern throughout. Lastly, schooling comes in at 4/5, with a total of 18 out of 25 for the city of Peoria! 

Number 9 is Mesa for the best places to live in Phoenix! Mesa is a large suburb with it being more of an urban area. The population of Mesa is 478,000 with the average age being 42 years old. Housing will come in at 4/5 depending on where you live in Mesa. The west side is going to be more affordable. The more East you go, there are more outdoor activities and you’re surrounded by mountains. For entertainment, that’ll come in at 3/5. Mesa has an awesome arts district in the downtown area. If you like baseball, the Chicago Cubs and Oakland A’s are based out of Mesa for spring training. Mesa is a pretty decent employment center with major companies like Boeing being located there. That’ll come in at 4/5. Commute comes in at 4/5 with the 202 loop being around and schooling systems will come in at 3/5. Mesa scored at 18/25 for the top ten places to live in Phoenix. 

Have you heard of the town of Prescott? The beloved town of Prescott comes in at number 8 for the best places to live in Phoenix. Prescott is in the Northwest area of the state an hour and a half from the Phoenix area. Prescott is a small western town that gives an amazing small-town feel if you’re into that. Prescott has a population of 42,000. The housing comes in at 4/5 because it’s affordable and has gone up quite a bit due to people wanting to get second homes in the area. Entertainment comes in at 5/5 because there are so many outdoor activities, such as biking, hiking, and more! From a job standpoint, this will be a 2/5, not ideal for the younger crowd. Since Prescott is going to be on the smaller side, getting around will be a 4/5 and schooling comes in at 4/5 for a total of 19/25. 

Tempe comes in at 7 for the best places to live in Phoenix. Tempe is popular with Arizona State University and is the center of the Phoenix metro area. Tempe is a phenomenal employment hub and getting anywhere is convenient. The average age is 29 with local colleges and young professionals. Housing comes in at 2/5 for Tempe because it’s expensive due to older development and no additional plots of land. You’re essentially paying for the convenience and location. Entertainment comes in at 5/5 because of the walkability to all the bars, restaurants, and nightclubs with a light rail running right through the downtown, also making the commute a 5/5. Employment is rated a 5/5 because there are plenty of job opportunities there for bigger companies. The schooling system for Tempe is a 3/5, which is a little bit above average but not the best. The city of Tempe comes in at 20/25! 

Phoenix comes in at number 6 for the best places to live in Phoenix. Phoenix is massive, being the 5th largest city in the entire country, with a population of 4.6 million people. Housing is a 4/5 because it’s spread out. There is a diversity of housing here to choose from, so there’s something for everyone! Because Phoenix is populous. Entertainment is 5/5 because there’s anything you could want, from professional sports to arts and theater. Employment is a 5/5 because there are opportunities from downtown to uptown Phoenix. Schooling comes in at 2/5 because of the Phoenix Unified School District not being highly rated, however, you have plenty of options from charter schools to traditional schools. Overall, Phoenix comes in at 20/25!

 

Now, get excited because we’ll be going into the top 5 cities now! The city of Glendale is well known for being the center for big sporting events, with the Arizona Cardinals, Phoenix Coyotes, the Fiesta Bowl, U.S Soccer Friendlies. The Westgate area has plenty of shops and restaurants. The average age from Glendale is 39 years old. Housing comes in at 4/5 because housing is still fairly affordable in comparison to other cities in Phoenix. Because of Westgate, entertainment comes in at 5/5. Employment is a 4/5 because they do have some presence with employers with a large number of businesses there, and the commute anywhere you go in Glendale is easy. I would rate that a 5/5. Lastly, the schooling system comes in at 3/5, being just a little bit above average. If you would consider Glendale, the total is 21/25 for the best places to live in Phoenix

The 4th best place to live in Phoenix according to the KRI is the town of Gilbert. Yes, the town, not the city of Gilbert. Gilbert has grown tremendously with an average age of 37 years old. Gilbert is affordable for housing, so we’ll give that a 4/5. It is a newer, clean, family-oriented town. The entertainment comes in at 4/5 because there are mom and pop shops, good restaurants, the walkability of downtown Gilbert is quaint. The job sector is a 4/5 since Gilbert is not a huge employment center in terms of big companies, but there are some forms of employment in the town. The commute around Gilbert is good with the grid system but if you’re going towards downtown Phoenix, Gilbert is close to the freeway, but then you’ll have to be willing to drive quite a bit. The schooling system is 5/5 because the schools are phenomenal guys. The Gilbert schooling district is really good on a national scale. Gilbert comes in at 21/25 for the best places to live in Phoenix!

Scottsdale comes in 3rd place for the best places to live in Phoenix! You can make the argument for it being the number one spot, but it comes in at number three on the KRI index. Scottsdale has a population of 240,000 with an average age of 49. The average age is a little higher because the housing is more expensive. The housing sits at 3/5 because the affordability isn’t great when it comes to the average price point, however, Scottsdale does have a bunch of different types of properties that one could buy. Two-bedroom condos come in the low two-hundred-thousand-dollar mark to the high three-hundred-dollar mark. The best part about Scottsdale is the entertainment, I would rate it a 5/5. Scottsdale is the golf mecca of the world, there’s indoor skydiving, casinos, top golf, nightclubs, shopping, dining, you name it, we have it! The job sector would be a 5/5 too because it is the second-largest employment center in the state of Arizona behind downtown Phoenix. If you want to get anywhere around the area, the commute is 5/5 because loop 101 runs right through the city. Scottsdale is pretty narrow and is very long. The schooling also comes in at 5/5 because the Scottsdale Unified School District is highly rated in the Phoenix valley, there are plenty of options if you have kids. The total for the city of Scottsdale is 23/25. 

Now moving on to number two, Flagstaff is one of the best places to live in Arizona for several reasons. Flagstaff is located two hours, depending on where you’re coming from in the Phoenix area. The weather changes significantly, being 25 to 30 degrees cooler than the Phoenix valley any time of the year. The population of Flagstaff comes in at 71,000 with an average age of 35. Housing is at 3/5 even though I use to rate it a 5/5. Ever since Covid, there’s been a rush of people pouring in from not just Phoenix, but also out of state. Because of that, now homes are ridiculously overpriced. I would rate entertainment a 5/5 because there are plenty of outdoor activities, such as skiing, biking, off-roading, hiking, and more. For employment, Northern Arizona University is in Flagstaff and there are plenty of job opportunities there, but if you’re looking outside of that, then there is a lack of opportunities elsewhere. I would give that a 3/5. Commuting around Flagstaff is a 5/5 with it being a smaller town and the I 40 and I 17 going right through the city. Schooling would come in at 3/5 because it’s just a little above average but nothing great in terms of the public school system. Overall, Flagstaff comes in at 19/25, but the reason it comes in at number two is the variety of uniqueness and the small-town feel that’s in the proximity of Phoenix. 

Finally, it’s time to discuss the number one area to live in the state of Arizona, it’s Chandler! I would rate Chandler the top place to live in Arizona. Chandler is known as the next Silicon Valley of the southwest or west coast. There are plenty of tech investments that are going into the city. The city can expand South so more land is available for more urban development. The average age of Chandler residents is 39 years old with a population of 245,000. There are many tech sectors and defense contractors based out of Chandler. Housing comes in at 4/5 because of the job growth and the housing market exploded. Entertainment is 4/5 because the downtown Chandler area has come a long way over the years. There are trendy restaurants and bars, and the walkability of the city is great. Employment is a 5/5 because of the reasons we’ve mentioned before. Major companies are investing in Chandler for their businesses to grow. Companies such as Intel are now located in Chandler and that has brought plenty of great jobs to the area. The commute is 5/5 because it is easy to get up and down the grid system within Chandler, with many major roads and freeways that run all through the city. Schools, again, are one of the best school districts in the entire state of Arizona. Chandler comes in at 23/25, which ties with Scottsdale, but Chandler in my eyes takes the prize.

To end this all, I hope this content about the best places to live in Arizona was informative. We have so many people contacting us who are moving to the Phoenix area, and we are so happy to make the transition easier for them. If you have additional questions about any of the places we’re discussed in this blog post, reach out to us at info@kellycookhomes.com.

Seven Pros and Seven Cons of Living in Phoenix Arizona

Have you ever wondered what are the pros and cons of living in Phoenix Arizona? Today, we’ll be discussing several pros and cons of living in the great city of Phoenix, starting with the pros. Arizona is a very forward-thinking economy right now with corporate tax breaks and incentives, which makes the area very business-friendly for larger companies. Thus, this brings more jobs to the valley! Larger companies such as Apple, Google, and Uber are making their way here. Entertainment is another pro of the Phoenix valley. There are plenty of things to do here for entertainment, so you would never get bored. Even the sports culture here is phenomenal, we have all the major sports here. Along with the plenty of entertainment, there is to do around here, the food scene is incredible. The variety of food we have here is a great way to experience different cultures. Another pro to living in Phoenix is how amazing the outdoor activities are. We’re surrounded by mountains, almost 360 degrees around the Phoenix area. There are a plethora of hiking trails if that’s what you’re into. There’s plenty of area for mountain biking, outdoor ATVing, dirt biking, off-roading, and even kayaking and paddleboarding with several large lakes nearby, such as Lake Pleasant or Lake Bartlett. Kid’s activities and sports are normally year-round with the weather being warm and sunny, just make sure you stay hydrated in the summer!

A fourth pro to living in Arizona is real estate. Now, some may associate real estate as either a pro or a con to living in Phoenix Arizona for multiple reasons, but as a realtor, real estate is always a pro anywhere you go! You’ll find different styles of homes here, which include Santa Fe, modern transitional, desert contemporary, Tuscan, and much more. Stucco and tile roofs and desert landscaping are a common denominator for all homes here in Phoenix. Phoenix has a very spread-out area when it comes to business, with downtown Phoenix district, to Old Town Scottsdale, to Air Park Scottsdale, Westgate, and more. People are drawn to moving to Phoenix for its lower-maintenance homes. For example, the tile shingles on the roofs are going to last anywhere from 50-70 years. Stucco is very long-lasting and durable year-round, even during the heat. A fifth pro to living here is the traffic. That may sound weird to hear, but even being the fifth largest city in the nation, it’s not even ranked in the top 30 for the worst traffic cities or areas. We have a phenomenal loop system that loops around the entire valley and keeps everything interconnected. There are many other pros to living here from the amazing healthcare system we have here or even the weather, I could go on and on.

Now, it’s time to discuss what the cons are to living in Phoenix Arizona. Here’s an interesting one to start with, have you ever heard of valley fever? Valley fever is a fungal infection that affects your lungs. If you’re in the backyard digging dirt or ever around a construction site, all the dust you breathe in causes valley fever. Another reason why you wouldn’t want to live in Phoenix Arizona is because of the creepy crawlies. I don’t want to go into too many details because they’re creepy and they crawl around everywhere. From the scorpions to the rattlesnakes, lizards, spiders, and much more. Don’t worry, you won’t see them everywhere you go, it’s a rare occurrence. Going back to dust, the 3rd reason con to living in Phoenix Arizona is summertime heat and the dust. It is dusty a lot down here because we’re in the desert. There is plenty of grass in certain parts of communities and cities, but by nature, the Sonoran Desert is going to have some dust. We are going to have more dust in the summertime when we have monsoons and haboobs. Haboobs are giant clouds of dust that range from 40-60 feet, they look like a tidal wave! It engulfs the city sometimes, but they don’t happen all the time. It gets homes dirty and if you drive a black car, good luck keeping the car clean in the summertime. Another con to living in Phoenix Arizona is the lack of public transportation, especially being the 5th largest metropolitan city in the entire country and being very spread out. We are ranked number one city in the country for square miles, but even with buses and the light rail system in downtown Phoenix, we still have a lack of public transportation.

To end this all, this list of pros and cons to living in Phoenix Arizona is to help others gain insight into the city of Phoenix and true information about living here. We have so many people contacting us who are moving to the Scottsdale/Phoenix area, and we are so happy to make the transition easier for them. If you have any additional questions about all the things that come with living in Phoenix Arizona, reach out to us at info@kellycookhomes.com

Nine Things You Need to Know Before Moving to Phoenix Arizona

What are the nine things to know before moving to Phoenix? We’re here to talk about everything Phoenix and what it looks like to live in the 5th largest metropolitan area. Now, let’s start this list with everything you should know!

To kick it off, car registration is more expensive to register your car in Arizona than in most states across the United States, but don’t let that scare you. If you’re into crunching numbers, it’s about two dollars and 80 cents for a new car out of 100, so it comes in at 2.8 percent. The nice thing about cars is that they are a depreciated asset, so over time, you’ll end up paying less for the car registration. The 2nd thing to know before moving to Phoenix is that you live in the desert. Even though this is a given, the Sonoran Desert is one of the few deserts in the entire world that has cacti, specifically saguaros here in Arizona. With the desert comes creepy crawlies and other animals that are out of the ordinary for other states. Here’s a little piece of advice, do not pet the coyotes or javelina – also known as desert pigs. They may look friendly and all, but they will bite you. Watch out for your small dogs or even cats in the backyard of your home because they could jump the fence. Scorpions, as you all know, are very common in the desert. They are typically in the more mountainous areas but having consistent pest control is the key to keeping them away. The 3rd thing to know before moving to Phoenix is that pools are the move when you reside here. The summertime gets hot, and you will most likely want a pool or to have access to a pool. The average pool right now use to start around $30,000 but because of the increase of supply and demand, those pools run upward to $50,000. The advantage of that is you can roll the cost right into your mortgage loan at 3-4% and it will become subsidized.

The 4th thing to know before moving to Phoenix is that the commute time is extremely spread out. Being one of the largest cities in the entire country per square mile, everything will be about 20 minutes away or more. Buying an energy-efficient car is a popular thing to do, especially living in large metropolitan areas or saving more money long term. The 5th factor to living in Arizona is the overall cost of utilities. In Phoenix, they are not badly ranked in comparison to other states. Living in a state with plenty of sunshine means solar panels are huge. One reason you may want to consider, is you’re able to lock in on a 20-year lease or maybe a 20-year purchase contract when you buy your next home. Having a solar system may be a big plus, as homes down here are built very energy efficient. Other than that, electric companies allow you to have a monthly equalizer plan, so you’ll be able to pay the same amount monthly every single year. The 6th thing to know before moving to Phoenix is how amazing the food scene is. The food scene here has an amazing variety of options, from Mexican, Middle Eastern, Italian, and so on. I mean, you must try the Mexican food! The cool thing about dining in the Valley is the ambiance standpoint to have the indoor and outdoor dining feel for 7 to 8 months out of the year. And the wait staff is very friendly!

The 7th thing to know before moving to Phoenix is the plethora of options kids have for schooling systems. Now, it’s no secret that Arizona on the public school system scale doesn’t have the best ratings in the country, however, there are some niche great public-school systems with higher ratings. You got to do your research to see which one will fit best if you have kids. Just to name a few, you got the Scottsdale Unified School District, the Paradise Valley Unified School District, the Kyrene School District, etc. There are a lot of options when it comes to private schools or charter schools. The unique thing about Arizona is the Arizona private school tuition tax credit. What that allows you to do is donate part of your state income tax to pay for a student’s education at a private school. On to the 8th important thing to know before moving is the housing. Housing will likely be your biggest expense in terms of cost of living, but the median price point of all homes in Maricopa County is $385,000. It’s rare to find homes at that price point in the Scottsdale area, but Chandler, Buckeye, and across the valley has different pricing for homes. Lastly, the 9th thing to know before moving to Phoenix is the lifestyle of living here. There are so many different things down here in Phoenix they have to offer, that’s right, from indoor to outdoor, to entertainment, the cultures, the arts, etc is located right in your backyard. It’s very easy to get the family out and about to do whatever y’all like to do. The Phoenix valley has it all.

To end this all, Phoenix has an array of options in so many areas that makes it very easy to please every single person that moves here. We have so many people contacting us who are moving to the Scottsdale/Phoenix area, and we are so happy to make the transition easier for them. If you have any additional questions about all the things that come with living in Phoenix Arizona, reach out to us at info@kellycookhomes.com

Cost of Living in Phoenix AZ

Have you ever wondered what the total cost of living in Phoenix Arizona is and how that compares to other cities across the US? We are going to discuss the cost of living with everything from property taxes to housing, to a night out on the town, to utilities, and everything in between. Phoenix now is the 5th largest metropolitan area in the whole country, and it will continue to grow. We are going to break down several areas that contribute to the ost of living in Phoenix Arizona. The first is housing, which of course is going to be the biggest expense of living in any city. Normally, housing should be about 28%-30% of your total income. Depending on which city you live in, housing expenses will range. Now, let’s rate this on a scale. The national average is always at 100. Phoenix housing comes in at 103.5, which is above the average according to that national scale. What makes up the housing costs? Owning a house or even renting contribute to the overall score for the Phoenix metro area. A few years back, the Phoenix valley ranked in the mid 90s, but with the shifting market and constant growth of the area, our overall score will be ranked higher. Phoenix, Arizona is becoming a destination for retirees and second homeowners.

Utility cost is going to fluctuate dramatically based on how much you use. Gas has risen over the past 20 years for price and most people only use it just for the dryer or even fireplaces in the home. Air conditioning costs will rise drastically in the summertime because of the heat. One AC unit will cover about 2000 Sq. ft of the home, but if you have a two-story, you more than likely will have a couple of AC units. In terms of electricity, APS and SRP are the two main electrical companies, and they have different plans for on-peak and off-peak usage. A very common practice here in Arizona for electricity is not using any electrical components in the house from 3pm-8pm. Home maintenance also contributes to the cost of living in Phoenix Arizona. Most homes in Arizona have a pool and the costs for maintenance will run you anywhere between $80-$100 a month. Having a landscaper is common to have while living here, with most homes having a desert front. There are areas of town where homes do have grass front and depending on what you have in terms of landscaping, the cost will vary. Pest control is the other area of cost that’s important to know. Living in the desert brings a plethora of creepy crawlies and maintaining a constant rhythm to your pest control is important. Lastly, if you preferred to hire a cleaning service to clean your home professional, and let’s say you have a house around 4000 Sq.ft, you’re looking anywhere from 125-200 a month on average to come every two weeks.

Going straight from utilities and housing, property taxes are one of the reasons why you’d want to live in Arizona. Why? Because they are LOW! Arizona is one of the only states in the country with the lowest property taxes overall. For most people, that is a determining factor to where they want to live. On the topic of taxes, Arizona also has a decent sales tax, coming in at 8.3%. Across the board, that is average in the country. There are some items here that do not have a sales tax, such as groceries, medical supplies, etc. The fourth area of discussion for the ost of living in Phoenix Arizona is state income tax. Now there are some states across the country that have zero state income tax. Arizona comes in at a lower rate overall. Our state income tax is 4.5%, which is up to $159,000 for an individual, and $318,000 for a married couple. However, proposition 208 did pass on the ballot in 2020, which means that any income above $318,00 will be taxed 4.5% with an extra 3.5%. That brings the total to 8%. Recently, there has been a lawsuit filed against the state of Arizona stating that the passing of that is illegal. We are waiting to see if the passes officially or not.

Now, let’s go to car expenses, yes, everyone has car expenses. Since the valley is so big and spread out, having a car is a necessity to getting around. The average price per gallon in Phoenix is $2.86 cents, where the national average is $2.89. Now, here’s the kicker. Car registration and vehicle license tax comes in a bit higher in Arizona, which makes up for the lower property taxes. The good thing overall is that after you pay the initial registration of the vehicle, the vehicle license tax amount will go down because cars depreciate over the years. Another car factor you’ll notice in the state of Arizona is that you don’t see many do-it-yourself car washes, with it being more popular in other parts of the country. Pretty much everything is automation, and you’ll see a car wash every few minutes around the valley. With it being so dusty, having a monthly membership for the car wash is a big way you can save money.

To end this all, the overall cost of living in Phoenix Arizona is all around affordable compared to other states. Entertainment, health care, and other areas also contribute but we wanted to cover the more important area of costs. We have so any people contacting us who are either moving to the Scottsdale/Phoenix area and we are so happy to make the transition easier for them. If you have any additional questions about the cost of living in Phoenix Arizona, reach out to us at info@kellycookhomes.com