Lack of housing supply may wreck Phoenix economy

By Melissa Rosequist | YourValley

Low inventory and high housing prices are not just a real estate issue, one economist says, as the threat of economic development consequences across the Valley of the Sun grows more concerning.

However, one local Realtor says the housing inventory is bouncing back quickly and the Valley’s housing market may not be as doom-and-gloom as it was just three months ago.

Scottsdale is among Phoenix suburbs receiving advice to build more housing units — ones of every size and price — before the housing crisis gets worse.

“The reality is, the only real solution is more supply. And more supply at all levels — all types of housing, at all income levels,” said Elliott Pollack, a longtime economist. “Some cities are all over that and understand it, and some cities don’t.”

At Scottsdale City Hall, not all elected councilors agreed with Pollack’s conclusion following a July presentation on the topic.

Further, market inventory is rising quickly, according to real estate experts, citing about 14,000 houses available today — a dramatic increase from March.

“What I know about the market right now is that in general, we are still at a shortage, but we’re quickly, quickly climbing,” said Shelby DiBiase, a longtime Valley Realtor. “For instance, when the market was at the lowest, which was around March of this year, we were around 4,200 listings active on the market, which was extremely low. … Inventory today is 14,717 homes. That number, against March, that’s a huge increase.”

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