Belfiore: Queen Creek, Hunt Highway show housing market’s resilience against COVID impacts

By Mike Sunnucks | Rose Law Group Reporter

The regional housing market continues to show that it has not been hit as hard as expected by the COVID-19 shutdowns and job losses.

“It’s a lot stronger than I expected,” said real estate expert Jim Belfiore.

Belfiore, who is president of Belfiore Real Estate Consulting in Phoenix, points to a bellwether growth submarket – the Queen Creek, San Tan and Hunt Highway areas in the Southeast Valley.

Belfiore said those areas have only seen a 20 percent decline in home sales so far in the second quarter compared to the first quarter of 2020. He said the Queen Creek / Hunt Highway submarket is only off 15 percent from a year ago.

“It’s pretty healthy,” Belfiore said.

Belfiore initially projected as much as an 80 percent drop in home sales because of pandemic shutdowns.

The Queen Creek and San Tan areas have seen significant growth as the East Valley continues to grow and gain jobs before COVID. Belfiore said closer-in East Valley suburbs such as Gilbert, Chandler and the Mesa Gateway area are still popular but are increasingly getting built out.

Belfiore said the Queen Creek strength is indicative of what he is seeing across the region. Many home builders kept sales offices open for private viewing or allowed prospective buyers to do self-guided tours of model homes.

“The builders that were aggressive and stayed open. Their numbers are very strong,” Belfiore said.

Belfiore said he is not seeing any impacts on home sales from the unrest from the George Floyd protests that have occurred in downtown Phoenix and Scottsdale.

“The protests and looting doesn’t seem to have impacted homebuilders,” Belfiore said.

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