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Housing

New homes under construction at Presidio in the Pines off Woody Mountain Road in this 2016 file photo. New houses are going up to meet market demand while affordability of homes is climbing out of reach of the average worker in Flagstaff.

Housing prices in the Flagstaff area continued to climb in 2017, sticking with a five-year trend of increasing median home sales prices in a market an expert said has recovered from the recession.

In 2017, the median sale price for a single-family detached home climbed to $375,000, up from $352,000 in 2016. After median home prices decreased from 2011 to 2012, they continued on an upward trend beginning in 2013, according to data from Century 21 Realtor Stephen Brighton.

On top of increasing prices, selection continued to be slim for buyers who were looking for a home at or below the median sale price. According to the Northern Arizona Multiple Listing Service, there are 15 homes in the city priced at or below $375,000. Of those homes, 11 are in Presidio in the Pines, in various stages of construction, Brighton said. Of the four other homes, two are in Sunnyside, one in Lower Greenlaw and one in Bow and Arrow.

“And that’s it,” Brighton said.

Brighton said Flagstaff is “basically at the top” of the housing market again, noting the median price in 2017 was only $4,000 lower than in 2006, at the height of the housing bubble.

In 2017, 1,158 homes were sold in the area, a 2 percent increase from 2016.

December set records for both the most homes sold in that month, 92, and the median sales price for the month, $373,000, Brighton said.

Tammara Prager, the president of the Northern Arizona Association of Realtors, sad the high demand and low supply creates “a seller’s market below $450,000.”

However, for those who can afford to buy, housing values continue to climb, making it a good time to invest in a home, Brighton said.

“People want to know the market is going up,” he said.

Both Brighton and Prager agreed the median home price in 2017 was still out of reach for people and families who earn the median income in the city.

For those still looking to buy but who cannot afford a single-family detached home in the city, it might be best to look at other options, Prager said.

“You could maybe get a townhome or a condo, or you look in the outlying areas, like Bellemont or Doney Park,” she said.

Prager said 2017 did not bring any surprises in housing or sales, continuing to stick with existing trends.

“We’re still experiencing really low inventory below $450,000,” she said. “We’re seeing inventory come above $450,000, but that’s not where we need inventory.”

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The reporter can be reached at cvanek@azdailysun.com or 556-2249.

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City Government and Development Reporter

Corina Vanek covers city government, city growth and development for the Arizona Daily Sun.

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