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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!