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Old 08-16-2010, 01:41 PM
 
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How are sales going in Alegria at this time? When we visited in February things looked pretty slow.
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Old 08-16-2010, 06:18 PM
 
Location: Bernalillo, NM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tthomps1 View Post
How are sales going in Alegria at this time? When we visited in February things looked pretty slow.
They have something like 30 homes under construction. It's been a very busy summer at Alegria construction-wise. With the federal home buying stimulus now gone it might slow down but who knows. We've also heard they're going to be building 2 or 3 spec homes to put on the market.
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Old 08-21-2010, 12:23 AM
 
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Default Alegria notes

I will be at Alegria in mid-October to look at the models and talk to Lisa in the office who is a sales rep there. Online the bigger homes look most appealing, though the lots seem to be small which I guess is good for less to maintain. The biggest negative is that it seems that the homes are built too close together with little or no fencing between homes. I have talked (over the phone) to two different people who are VERY happy there and they bought the smallest home, the Capulin. There are "premium lots" that are like over $55K extra! OUCH!!! Living next to the Bosque seems to be the preferred lots but you pay that premium. I will also walk around and see if I can get more pro and con feedback from residents there. Buying a home new is nice because you can get built what you want in the house but will have to pay for all the extras like upgrades. Some of the pre-owned houses for sale can be great deals but you get a house that may not be what you really want with the interior. Finally, some people at Alegria say the clubhouse is too small for the community when the homes are fully built. Del Webb said it will not expand at this time. Overall, though, Alegria is worth a look when I am there right after the balloon festival. THANKS TO ALL who have shared their Alegria thoughts and please respond to this post with more ideas. Your input is VERY important to me and others interested in Alegria.
Victor
San Jose, CA.
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Old 08-21-2010, 06:21 PM
 
Location: Bernalillo, NM
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We've now been in our new home at Alegria for about a month, and are even more certain we made the right choice moving here. It's true the houses are tight together with small yards. But as you said the benefit is less maintenance. Plus there's lots of community space (clubhouse, patio, swimming pools/spa, bocce courts, walking trails inside and outside the community) where you can hang out with friends so you don't need as much private space in your own yard.

Regarding your comment about little/no fencing between homes, that's true with a number of the first ones to be built in the community, which were all the smaller series on the upper tier. But just about all the new homes going into the lower part have 5-foot side fences. Although depending on your lot location you may end up paying for one or both side fences yourself. 5-foot back fences, paid by the developer, are a standard feature with all the homes.

We bought the biggest model (Cibola) and are very happy with it. Paid a premium (not $55k ) since one side of our lot borders an open space. I agree that the developer is trying to get as much money for lot premiums as possible, a practice that has intensified since Pulte/Del Webb took over the community. They also lowered the base home prices a bit, but took a number of features that were standard and turned them into options. Different pricing strategy than before Del Webb, but still think they're selling quality homes for a reasonable price. Particularly when you consider all the community amenities that come with it.

Del Webb just replaced the HOA management company that was getting paid for on-going management and maintenance of the community. We have a new management company, AAM, who is starting on Sept 1. AAM manages lots of other Del Webb communities as well as other active adult developments and supposedly has a very good reputation. Alegria got really spiffed up for the Del Webb grand opening back in the spring but some needed maintenance has been deferred since then and things have slid a bit. We like it that Del Webb didn't think this was good enough and acted fairly quickly to make things better.

They've told the residents that the change may mean the monthly HOA fee will rise a bit from the current $112/month in 2011 since the new company has slightly higher fees. But they're also saying the increase should only be a few dollars per month and we should be seeing a definite improvement in maintenance and service. Among other things AAM will be locating a community manager onsite here at Alegria two days per week for residents to be able to talk to about needed maintenance and other topics.

Not sure what all interests you have, but besides the "official" Alegria activities there are additional informal groups and outings that some of the residents are doing on their own. For example, I've gotten involved in a brewski hiking group that goes out for a hike followed by a stop for your favorite beverage on the way back home every 2-4 weeks. Good people and great fun. Other folks get together for trips to local arts and crafts fairs/festivals. etc. We were warned, and have already found it to be true, that a major problem can be finding enough time on your calendar to fit in everything there is to do here in Alegria and the surrounding area.

Feel free to send me a DM if you have any specific questions.
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Old 08-27-2010, 12:51 AM
 
Location: NM
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I have followed some of the messages about the Alegria over 55 new community development. At first, it seemed I read in some message that it was in Placitas. We went to Placitas last weekend to discover that of course, it was not there. I guess my question at this point is whether there is a consideration that any of the houses could be leased for 6mos/1yr to see if the community, etc. would work for an incoming couple. I'm wondering if that kind of thing is even done....

We also looked in Albuquerque and after living in a series of smaller type towns and cities (such as Anchorage, AK; Woodland Park, CO; Sierra Vista, AZ), we were somewhat intimidated of the traffic as well as some of the cost of homes for sale especially in the East Mountains and Placitas. We live currently in Eastern NM.
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Old 08-28-2010, 10:45 PM
 
Location: Bernalillo, NM
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Retirement communities like Alegria typically take a dim view of rentals and have rules in place to either discourage them or ban them outright. The concern being among residents living there that they don't want a bunch of absentee landlords with renters who don't take care of the properties, don't follow the rules that govern living in the community, etc.

So I don't believe there's any way to lease a house in Alegria for 6-12 mos to try out the community. But it wouldn't hurt to visit and ask the sales staff whether there's any way to test drive living here. I think they have 1 or 2 spec homes that on the market and don't know, for example, whether they might let you stay in one for at least a short period of time to see what the community is like. Know Del Webb has visitor quarters in some of their other, larger development. Don't know if they would consider it here.

Also, there's a few resales on the market now; don't know if any of the owners of these would be interested in renting or able to do so. You could drive around the community, pick up flyers or write down the contact info, and call the realtors to see if renting is allowed/an option with any of the resale properties.

Third possible option is that some folks here are snow birds that leave for an extended period for either cooler places in the summer or for warmer (AZ) places in the winter. House sitting one of their places while they're away might be an option. Problem is that you'd have to spend some time here talking to folks to find any snow birds and have some good references or other info to probably convince them your a safe candidate for house sitting.

Don't know for sure if any of these ideas would work or be allowed, just throwing them out for you to think about.

My wife and I grew up in Fairbanks, so I hear you about the traffic vs Anchorage, etc. But since we left AK we've lived in a couple of large communities (bigger than the ABQ area) so the traffic here doesn't seem all that bad to me. If you don't have to be on the streets/highways during rush/commute hours I think the traffic is actually pretty easy. Just have to practice defensive driving at all times, which is what everyone needs to do no matter where they are, and not be in too big of a rush to get somewhere.
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Old 08-29-2010, 11:23 PM
 
69 posts, read 145,046 times
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Default Thanks for more feedback

Thanks so much for your most helpful comments. I plan to be at Alegria in mid-October and look at models and talk to office sales rep, Lisa. Too bad the incentive program with the freebies on appliances and other discounts ended today. I hope they do something like this again. I favor the Loretto model the best but the Cibola is also nice but not as versatile for me as the the Loretto. I plan to sell my home in California in the spring and then move to NM. I will also be looking at homes with my agent this fall in the Albuquerque area. I guess the ONLY thing I am wondering about is the so-called "crime problems" in nearby Bernalillo that my friends in Rio Rancho talk about. But the only major crime problems I keep reading about are in the Albuquerque area south of Interstate 40. Any comments on this aspect are most welcome. Again, MANY THANKS to all for your most helpful comments which are thoroughly appreciated. Please keep them coming! Victor
Quote:
Originally Posted by rwjoyak View Post
We've now been in our new home at Alegria for about a month, and are even more certain we made the right choice moving here. It's true the houses are tight together with small yards. But as you said the benefit is less maintenance. Plus there's lots of community space (clubhouse, patio, swimming pools/spa, bocce courts, walking trails inside and outside the community) where you can hang out with friends so you don't need as much private space in your own yard.

Regarding your comment about little/no fencing between homes, that's true with a number of the first ones to be built in the community, which were all the smaller series on the upper tier. But just about all the new homes going into the lower part have 5-foot side fences. Although depending on your lot location you may end up paying for one or both side fences yourself. 5-foot back fences, paid by the developer, are a standard feature with all the homes.

We bought the biggest model (Cibola) and are very happy with it. Paid a premium (not $55k ) since one side of our lot borders an open space. I agree that the developer is trying to get as much money for lot premiums as possible, a practice that has intensified since Pulte/Del Webb took over the community. They also lowered the base home prices a bit, but took a number of features that were standard and turned them into options. Different pricing strategy than before Del Webb, but still think they're selling quality homes for a reasonable price. Particularly when you consider all the community amenities that come with it.

Del Webb just replaced the HOA management company that was getting paid for on-going management and maintenance of the community. We have a new management company, AAM, who is starting on Sept 1. AAM manages lots of other Del Webb communities as well as other active adult developments and supposedly has a very good reputation. Alegria got really spiffed up for the Del Webb grand opening back in the spring but some needed maintenance has been deferred since then and things have slid a bit. We like it that Del Webb didn't think this was good enough and acted fairly quickly to make things better.

They've told the residents that the change may mean the monthly HOA fee will rise a bit from the current $112/month in 2011 since the new company has slightly higher fees. But they're also saying the increase should only be a few dollars per month and we should be seeing a definite improvement in maintenance and service. Among other things AAM will be locating a community manager onsite here at Alegria two days per week for residents to be able to talk to about needed maintenance and other topics.

Not sure what all interests you have, but besides the "official" Alegria activities there are additional informal groups and outings that some of the residents are doing on their own. For example, I've gotten involved in a brewski hiking group that goes out for a hike followed by a stop for your favorite beverage on the way back home every 2-4 weeks. Good people and great fun. Other folks get together for trips to local arts and crafts fairs/festivals. etc. We were warned, and have already found it to be true, that a major problem can be finding enough time on your calendar to fit in everything there is to do here in Alegria and the surrounding area.

Feel free to send me a DM if you have any specific questions.
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Old 08-29-2010, 11:33 PM
 
69 posts, read 145,046 times
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GREAT and informative thoughts and thanks so much for sharing!!!!!!!!! Are you satisfied with the "fit and finish" of construction since sometimes today, houses are built too quickly and the work can be shabby. Is it possible to hire on my own and inspector to oversee in phases the quality of the construction of my new house being built or does Del Webb not allow that? Are name-brand appliances and materials used inside? Any comments on this subject are most welcome and many thanks for any feedback!!!! Victor
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Old 08-30-2010, 12:28 AM
 
Location: Bernalillo, NM
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I heard the same thing about supposed crime in Bernalillo before we decided to move to Alegria. If you do some searching online (e.g., see http://www.city-data.com/city/Bernalillo-New-Mexico.html and other sites) you'll find that Bernalillo's crime rate is definitely higher than average. But IMO opinion the crime stats don't necessarily show the true picture. We ultimately concluded, for the following reasons, that crime isn't of substantial concern in this area.

1. I believe much of Bernalillo's possible high crime rep is based on past history. See the following threads for some opinions on crime in Bernalillo more recently - http://www.city-data.com/forum/new-mexico/124653-parents-moving-bernalillo-advice.html, http://www.city-data.com/forum/albuquerque/442452-belen-bernallio.html and http://www.city-data.com/forum/albuquerque/947968-abq-crime-how-worried-should-i-2.html.

2. Bernalillo has a very small population relatively to ABQ or Rio Rancho, so relatively few crimes can result in high crime rates, which I think tends to skew how Bernalillo appears to compare crime-wise to larger communities.

3. While Alegria is in the city limits of Bernalillo, it lies on the other side of the Rio Grande from the old part of the city. It's also south of the city and sits across the river from Sandia Pueblo land. So it's geographically isolated from the poorer, higher crime areas of Bernalillo. Alegria is closer geographically and socio-economically to Rio Rancho than to the rest of the city of Bernalillo. Crime in Bernalillo wouldn't necessarily migrate to Alegria.

4. My personal view of crime is that you can avoid most of it if you stay aware of your surroundings when out and about, don't hang out in the known bad areas of a community, don't act like a victim and don't associate with activites/folks (drugs, gangs, etc.) that attract crime. Given that Alegria is somewhat of a separate enclave from Bernalillo, it's easy here to maintain "good habits" in terms of crime avoidance.

We lived about 3 miles to the west of Alegria in the Enchanted Hills area of Rio Rancho for 7 months while waiting for our home in the community to be built. During that time plus the 1 month we've been in Alegria we spent lots of time exploring the area; going into downtown Bernalillo for dining, shopping, etc.; and driving through just about all of the city to see what it is like. During this time we never felt unsafe and didn't personally see any signs of crime in Bernalillo or around Alegria. Bernalillo is definitely a poor city but poor doesn't necessarily equate to high crime.

Bottom line is that IMO crime isn't much of an issue in deciding whether Alegria is a good place to live.

Hope this is helpful.
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Old 08-30-2010, 01:06 AM
 
Location: Bernalillo, NM
1,133 posts, read 2,039,217 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unclebone View Post
GREAT and informative thoughts and thanks so much for sharing!!!!!!!!! Are you satisfied with the "fit and finish" of construction since sometimes today, houses are built too quickly and the work can be shabby. Is it possible to hire on my own and inspector to oversee in phases the quality of the construction of my new house being built or does Del Webb not allow that? Are name-brand appliances and materials used inside? Any comments on this subject are most welcome and many thanks for any feedback!!!! Victor
We are very satisfied with the fit and finish. Pulte/Del Webb has a great constuction supervisor here (Eddie) who did the same thing for Centex at Alegria before Pulte bought out Centex. He as well as Del Webb's activity director are both excellent - I can't say enough good things about each of them. Eddie definitely goes the extra step during and after construction to make sure you're happy with your home.

There's also a 30-day inspection after closing. Eddie suggests writing down anything you find during that month so that they can address all of the things you may find after move-in.

Buyers are free to hire their own home inspectors to help oversee construction. Some do although most don't. We didn't since I'm an engineer and have done a bunch of home remodeling, etc., so I figured I could do a pretty good job of oversight without any needed help. Eddie was very patient in answering all my questions during construction (just ask my wife how picky I can be ). I also went through the house in excruciating detail in the week before closing and made a written list of everything I found, gave the list to Eddie during the final walk-through, discussed it with him then, and everything was addressed by the closing.

There's also a 2-year (I believe) warranty on any fit and finish issues, and Pulte has a process in place for homeowners to report warranty items and get them addressed. We haven't tried this yet since it hasn't been needed with our new home. Some residents have told us getting warranty work done in the past was a bit problematic, but Pulte recently put Eddie in charge of this (in addition to his oversight of all initial home construction in Alegria). Plus they brought on a helper for him to make sure the warranty repairs get done expeditiously. With Eddie in charge of this I'm convinced that such repairs will get done right and on-time.

Another approach you can take is to hire the home inspector near the end of the warranty period to identify anything that needs fixing while the house is still under warranty. Eddie's actually the one that mentioned this possible approach to us, which some folks have supposedly done.

Name-brand appliances and materials are used, and consist of good although not top of the line items. All kitchen appliances are Whirlpool, with buyers responsible for furnishing the refrigerator, washer and dryer. Kitchen/bath cabinets are made by Quality Cabinets, which is an affliate of Merrilat. Not the best quality cabinets but good.

All in all, the Alegria homes are well built with good materials and do not feel or look "cheap." There are several levels of options for just about everything - lighting, flooring, cabinets, applicances, plumbing fixtures, etc. If you go with the lowest level the quality won't be as good but you'll still get a well-built home.

Good luck with selling your home in CA; we lived in the Sacramento area for 16 years before spending 4 years in KY prior to moving here. If you'd like to talk to my wife and me while you're here in mid-October feel free to send me a PM. We'd be happy to chat with you if you think it would be helpful.

Richard
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