The Dealmaker: 2/13/2018

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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





CalAtlantic opens two new home collections in Phoenix. “CalAtlantic Homes… has opened for sales at Arbor and Desert Bloom at Western Enclave… two miles from… the University of Phoenix Stadium, Gila River Arena and Westgate Entertainment Center… Homes ranging from 1,742 to 2,607 square feet will start at $247,990.” More press-release details in Builder.

Eastmark ready to break ground on first apartment complex. “[The Premier at Eastmark] will be located on 8.7 acres at Ellsworth and Ray… PCP Development expects to break ground on [the 216-unit project] in May and open the property in spring 2019.” More in East Valley Tribune.

It’s official: CalAtlantic becomes part of Lennar Corp. The deal went through yesterday, “at 11:59 PM ET.” Builder has the midnight merger details, including implications for homebuilding and the upshot for company stockholders.

MORE CALAT-LENNAR… After Lennar’s $6.5 billion CalAtlantic coup, what next? “Today, home building officially has a new No. 1 company by sales volume, combining the heft of the No. 2 and the No. 5 ranked U.S. builders as a 43,700-home, $17.2 billion enterprise.” But  Builder’s John McManus says “2018 is only just getting going.”

Survey: Home buyers remain mostly unfazed by 5% mortgage rates. “Only 6% would cancel their plans to buy if mortgage rates passed 5%… This represents a modest one-point increase in the portion of buyers who responded this way to a similar survey question in May…” More on these results, plus other findings from the Redfin survey, in Builder.

Finding hidden profits from change orders. “Throughout his 34-year career in home building, [Dennis Dixon, owner of Dixon Builders in Flagstaff, has] learned the key to finding hidden profits… But it requires having a refined contract that thoroughly explains your change order policies… Last month during the 2018 [IBS], Dixon led an education session called Making Money with Change Orders & Allowances.” NAHBNow passes along some of the “key points” Dixon “shared.” –>

Arizona State pushes back in real estate fight. “ASU has turned to real estate and its land holdings to bring in revenue, finance improvements at Sun Devil Stadium and Wells Fargo Arena as well as foster more research and development activity… But [some of these] real estate deals and ventures… are rubbing some fiscal conservatives the wrong way.” Now, PBJ reports that ASU is pushing back, joined by some “prominent business and real estate groups…” (Subscriber Content)

APS, First Solar plan large West Valley solar power plant with giant battery. “The First Solar plant… will be built near the APS Red Hawk Power Plant on 363rd Avenue in Arlington. The battery [‘about half the size’ of Tesla’s ‘largest’ battery ‘in the world’] will be capable of delivering 50 megawatts of power, enough for 12,500 homes, for three hours.” AZCentral also reports that the “solar panels will have a capacity of 65 megawatts, enough for about 16,250 homes, when sun is shining on the panels.”

Here’s what we know about Phoenix Rising FC’s proposed MLS-style stadium. Cost: “$250 million” and “privately funded.” Location: At the N.W. corner of the 101 and 202 on the Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community. And AZCentral knows even MORE about the potential stadium, including info on: Seating capacity, summertime heat issues, and the architecture firms hired to “design the MLS-style stadium.”

Despite an uncertain future, the Coyotes helped transform Glendale. “The Coyotes’ new arena spearheaded one of the West Valley’s most rapidly-growing areas. [After its groundbreaking in 2002, another] major pro sports team and dozens more businesses would follow, bringing thousands of jobs, millions of sales tax dollars and national attention to the city.” In YourValley, Glendale officials reflect on how the arena and the Coyotes (stay or go) have “changed Glendale forever.”

Mesa juggles downtown growth, livability. “Mesa wants to reinvigorate the city’s downtown core by making the area a hub for business and innovation — and do it without displacing the residents who already call it home… Brookings Institution Senior Fellow Jennifer Vey recently outlined what that transformation requires…” East Valley Tribune.

Judge gives Tempe ‘squatter’ 30 days to vacate land he claims is his.“[Steve Sussex] has battled the state and the city for more than a decade, claiming he has a right to land that has been part of his family for more than a century. On Monday, a court order ruled [that he has] 30 days to gather his personal property and leave. Anything left behind would be considered abandoned… ’There’s nothing I can do about it anymore’ ” says Sussex. AZCentral.

Exciting time’ as Casa Grande breaks ground on rec center after 12 years. “[Casa Grande’s Community Recreation Center] is being built on land donated by the Gilbert family in 2007, on Peart Road between Cottonwood Lane and Kortsen…”  Details, renderings, and shots from the groundbreaking for the “55,000-square-foot facility,” in Casa Grande Dispatch

[IN-DEPTH] Pinal farmer’s woes illustrate diminishing production in 21-year drought. “As water supplies in Arizona dwindle due to drought, groundwater pumping and a warming climate, farmers increasingly are facing poorer crop yields and, in some cases, resigning once-fertile farmland to unusable barren ground.” Travis Hartman, a “fourth-generation owner and operator of Caywood Farms” in Casa Grande is one of those farmers. Cronkite News.

Pollack: Three seemingly unrelated stories. Savings rate decline + Consumer credit increase + Government shutdown compromise = It’s manageable.The Monday Morning Quarterback explains, then delivers this kicker: “At present, financially, the U.S. is the prettiest house on an ugly block.” MMQ also has the latest data for these ‘Snapshots’ –> U.S.: GDP Consensus Forecast, Non-Manufacturing Index, Trade Deficit. AZ: Active Listings – Single Family Home Resale Market – Single Family Median Price.

Cameron’s $5M + deals of the day – 

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

Flake looks to meet Trump in the middle on immigration. “[Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake] will file an immigration amendment as early as Tuesday that mirrors some of the contours of the president’s plan. It will go further than some Democrats would like in tweaks to legal immigration and not as far as some border hawks will prefer, according to a summary provided to POLITICO.”

No Trump endorsement for Ward, Arpaio, reports ‘The New York Times’ but will he endorse anyone? “President Donald Trump may not publicly endorse any candidate in the Arizona race for outgoing Sen. Jeff Flake’s seat in a move that could damage some hopes.” What about Rep. Martha McSally? Will the fighter pilot get a Trump endorsement? This report from KTAR all but says that she is certainly seeking it.

Committee forwards bill to head off minimum wage increase, paid sick leave. “Senate Concurrent Resolution 1016 would not entirely rescind the law… Wages would not go back to the $8.05 an hour… But it would repeal future scheduled increases…” And Capitol Media Services Howard Fischer reports in Arizona Daily Sun: “What it also would do… is eliminate another provision of the 2016 law, which says full-time employees are entitled to at least three days of paid sick leave.”

Ducey shoots back at Shooter’s claims of ‘suspicious’ state contracts.’[Rep. Don] Shooter, according to The Arizona Republic, claimed his ousting was ‘politically motivated’ due to what he saw as ‘suspicious’ state contracts awarded to companies with ties to [Gov. Doug] Ducey or other state officials. But in an interview with KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Mac and Gaydos, Ducey said Shooter is an individual ‘with no credibility’…” LISTEN:

Dog opens door. What’s the big deal? A robot dog: Rose Law Group Notable Videoable. From The Guardian: “Ground-breaking robotics engineering and design company Boston Dynamics have released footage of the SpotMini, a dog-like robot that can open doors in the most unsettling manner possible.” WATCH in Rose Law Group Reporter. (Also available for your viewing enjoyment, this RELATED item: “Robot vs football: automatons struggle to perform on the pitch – video.”)

Fourth quarter existing home prices up 5.3 percent; nearly two-thirds of markets at all-time high Read more

Trophy High Rise in Phoenix’s Central Corridor Sells for $80.7 Million Read more

William Ryan Homes opens sixth neighborhood In Goodyear’s Estrella By Newland Communities Read more

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February 2018