By Catherine Reagor
The Arizona Republic
A view on the housing market from market expert Matt Widdows, CEO and founder of Phoenix-based HomeSmart:
Q. Describe metro Phoenix’s housing market now.
“The resale market has seen a huge absorption of distressed homes, and inventory levels are at lows we haven’t seen in recent years. We are seeing bidding wars in many areas, and prices are slowly but steadily going up in most parts of Maricopa County, especially (areas closer in). Although this is positive compared what we’ve seen over the last five years, it does create a somewhat hostile environment for buyers, sellers and real estate agents as they fight for properties that would have sat on the market without an offer just 12 to 18 months ago. Appraisers are still slow to catch up with the increasing price pressure, but somewhat understandably given the historical bubble that they took much of the blame for.