The Dealmaker: 12/20/2017

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The Dealmaker is a daily note of the day’s top real estate stories served just in time for lunch. Bon Appetit! Subscribe here to receive the Dealmaker to your inbox




Real Estate Q & A: What can a property owner do if a neighbor blocks an easement? What, like a neighbor obstructing access by taking naps in the middle of a road, and a property owner dealing with it through use of the phrase “Pardon me”? No, not quite. Rose Law Group Real Estate Litigation Department Chairman, Adam Martinez, explains what a property owner’s legal options are after a neighbor erects a chain across an easement that the property owner has used for many years — in this case, across a private airstrip. In Rose Law Group Reporter

Queen Creek, San Tan Valley: Home sales in 85142, 85140. Over 75 home sales since November 1, 2017 in the Queen Creek/San Tan Valley ZIPs, plus: “The 10 most expensive homes sold in Queen Creek over the past 30 days.” Lists include price, location/subdivision, square-footage, year built, and bed/bath info. At Queen Creek Independent.

BUH-BUY – Not a “good time to buy?” Tax changes might make opinions worse. “(NAR’s) new… (HOME) survey appears to confirm a… sentiment that Fannie Mae… has been reporting for months”: “The idea that it is a good time to buy a home appears to be losing ground.” And Mortgage News Daily reports that “[s]elling a home didn’t fare much better,” with nearly half of the HOME respondents citing “financial strain” and saying that they would “reconsider a move” should there be limitations on the MID.

WHOA, THAT HPI IS DEEP! – Home price winners and losers. “Since the U.S. began recovering from the home-price bust in 2006, economists have used the peak-to-current change in prices as a measure of recovery in markets. However, the peak-to-current change hyper-focuses on economic losses for those who bought at the peak. What about consumers who bought homes while prices were at the bottom?… A deeper look at the CoreLogic HPI shows some losers can be big winners.” –>

Strong housing starts estimate matches rise in builder confidence.“Single-family starts [rose] 5.3% to a 930,000 seasonally adjusted rate in November. This is the highest monthly annual rate since the Great Recession… The solid November estimate matches the increase in the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index to a level of 74 in December.” Using charts & graphs, NAHB’s foremost figure fiend, Robert Dietz, fleshes it all out at Eye On Housing.

A new playbook for real estate dynasties. “Most families that built real estate empires… spend years structuring transitions so that one generation hands over the baton of control to the next… [But not] Australia’s Lowy family, which built Westfield Corp. into one of the world’s largest shopping center owners…” (Another paywall piece brought to you by The Wall Street Journal.

Future Thunderbird relocation draws praise. “Officials believe the relocation will help the city build an international presence in addition to giving ASU’s Downtown Campus students more global opportunities.” If this article were a feature film, the praise in the form of movie-poster blurbs might look something like this: “Exciting and important” – Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton; “AWESOME!” – Tim Eigo, president of the Downtown Voices Coalition; “A HUGE benefit” – University spokesman Bret Hovel; “It will leave you BREATHLESS!!” – Variety. (Okay, so that last blurb was made up — but the others are real! See the story and catch all the quotes in Downtown Devil.

2017 Year in Review: Public universities falter, but building boom continues. “School construction was on the radar during 2017, from charter schools to private schools to universities in the Phoenix area this year. It also was a big year for Arizona’s three publicly traded universities — with one getting out of the public markets altogether.” Phoenix Business Journal (Subscriber Content)

Scottsdale Schools internal review claims district procurement process OK. “Questions began to sprout within the Hopi Elementary School community earlier this fall when the school was set to begin a complete tear-down and rebuild.” Scottsdale Independent reports that yesterday’s showdown — at high noon, no less — “yielded top district officials and reporters to hear [the] judgment on the allegations that SUSD had unethical procurement processes.” In the end, there was “little-to-no evidence of wrong doing.” Check out how it all went down. –>

After threat to move, Arizona Coyotes staying 1 more year in Glendale.“The announcement comes nine months after the team and [NHL] Commissioner Gary Bettman threatened to move the franchise unless it got a new arena.” No doubt this news boosts the hopes of diehard Coyotes fans, whose passions about the whole issue, if graphed over time, would (coincidentally enough) probably look something like this: ✔︎. More at AZCentral.

Tempe’s Hayden Flour Mill project gets new backer. “New to the team is Dick Portillo, founder of the Portillo’s restaurant chain…’ Tempe is a unique, creative city that holds a special place in my heart, and it deserves a hotel that truly speaks to its distinct spirit,’ Portillo said in a release.” More in PBJ.

Florence manager wants IP business park to incorporate prisons. “The Innovation Pavilion business park, tentatively planned north of the existing Florence Library and Community Center, is an ‘entrepreneurial ecosystem’ designed to grow businesses, attract talented young employees and develop municipal and corporate projects. [Town Manager Brent] Billingsley said the prisons are not the focus of Florence’s IP, but they need to be included.” Billingsley elaborates on the idea in Florence Reminder.

Cameron’s $5M + deals of the day –

As a supplement to the Dealmaker, we thought you might enjoy these articles!

The war of words over Lake Mead drought plan. This report from The Nevada Independent is a follow-up to a recent Cronkite News piece, “Spat between Arizona and California is damming Lake Mead plan.” Dealmaker’s “Cheap Shot of the Day” comes courtesy of one Colorado official in this report, who’s quoted as saying: “[W]hen it comes to the Colorado River, Arizona is going to be a big pain in the ass…”

4 under federal criminal charges hit with another lawsuit for water rate scheme. Three Pinal County residents have filed a civil suit against Gary Pierce, Sherry Pierce, Jim Norton and George Johnson in connection to the criminal charges they face in federal court. The four were indicted in May over allegations that they conspired to commit bribery, mail fraud and wire fraud, a scheme revealed to authorities by an unindicted co-conspirator. Yellow Sheet Report via Rose Law Group Reporter.

Burns war with APS centers on two words. “The question of whether utility regulator Bob Burns gets to grill the top executive at Arizona Public Service and review the company’s political spending could turn on what a judge decides is the meaning of the word ‘and.’… [APS’ attorney contends that] if the crafters of the Arizona Constitution wanted to empower individual commissioners, they would have used the word ‘or.’ ” A Howard Fischer and/or Capitol Media Services report, in Arizona Capitol Times. 

They aren’t doctors, just playing them in the Legislature. “Rep. Jay Lawrence, a Scottsdale Republican, wants to make it illegal for any state or local government or agency to limit the amount of regulated painkillers that physicians can prescribe at any one time… The timing of his bill, HB 2030, comes as Gov. Doug Ducey prepares his own legislation — going in the opposite direction.” Another report from Howard “When Does This Man Ever Sleep?!?” Fischer, this one in Arizona Daily Star.

With explanations, here’s how Arizona’s congressional representatives voted on the $1.5 trillion tax cut bill. “The House of Representatives and Senate passed Republicans’ $1.5 trillion tax cut bill with no Democratic support and only one GOP defection. Sen. Jeff Flake voted aye late last night.” To see “how Arizona’s delegation voted and what they had to say about the bill,” click to AZCentral. (And on the way there, access this RELATED item from POLITICO: “Confusion and chaos ahead as new tax rules take immediate effect.”)

Guess who loves John McCain — Democrats. “The poll from CNN and SSRS, a survey and research company, said… U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) is more popular with Democrats than he is with members of his own party.” (Sen. McCain’s probably thinking, “That’s awfully nice of you, Democrats. But where were you folks back in ’08?”) For a look at the findings head to KTAR.

Investigation: How Arizona K-12 school districts address capital needs. “Arizona Center for Investigative Reporting analyzed four years’ worth of campaign finance records from K-12 bond and override elections in Maricopa County and noticed a few new patterns.” Part 1: “K-12 districts outpace other state agencies in repeat use of vendors for large capital needs.”

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