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Old 04-09-2013, 04:59 PM
Location: Portland
61 posts, read 99,140 times
Reputation: 65


Why was Rancho Sahuarita one of the areas hardest hit by the housing downturn?
And did that also include the Adult community there too?
I currently live outside the
gates of approx 10 active adult communites where I am from now and friends in
the communities. So I have a good idea of what to expect both good & bad if we
decide to move to one.
Prefer newer community without a golf course and full time nurse. What other
communites should we concider that may appeal to us?
We do plan to use the resoures of the AF base for some shopping and also don't
have any school age children.
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Old 04-09-2013, 07:16 PM
4,221 posts, read 13,435,794 times
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the areas hardest hit in Tuc., Phx., LV, etc. are at the fringe of the built-up urban area....these outlying areas, including Sahuarita, were only developed because prices had gotten SO high in the early-mid 2000s that builders looked for cheap land to keep prices in check somehow....now that prices are low, these cheaply-built homes have been snapped up mostly by "investors" who rent them out.....because of poor location, less-than-thrilling quality and appearance (a sea of pink tile roofs), and a preponderance of renters, these developments will suffer for years to come.....the town of Maricopa is an example for the Phoenix area....

as always for real estate, the three most important rules remain location, location, location
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Old 04-10-2013, 10:31 AM
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I would take a look at some of the condo complexes and gated communities north of Tanque Verde along Sabino Canyon Road. These are close in and very convenient. I can drive from where I live 3 miles or less to just about every thing. Its not as expensive as downtown and near the University but still convenient to shopping and services.
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Old 04-10-2013, 09:08 PM
Location: Tucson for awhile longer
8,873 posts, read 15,590,346 times
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This is a zip code map of Tucson that has Davis-Monthan marked. You'll be able to see which zip codes would be within your targeted range of distance from your shopping.
Google Image Result for http://blog.tucsonazrealestate.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/162/files/2012/10/Tucson-AZ-Real-Estate-Zipcode-Map.thumb_.gif

Then, I'd check this website that details real estate listings in over-55 communities and match them with zip codes that work for you. If you find some things, maybe you can check back here and see of anyone has opinions on the communities that might work for you. Prices are listed from lowest (mobile homes) to highest (rather swanky properties in the Oro Valley part of the Northwest suburbs).
Active Adult Real Estate in Tucson

Probably the most obvious active adult community near D-M that will come up in any search is Del Webb's Rancho del Lago in the suburb of Vail. It's newer, large, and beautiful, but very golf-centric and you mentioned you don't want that.

I live in the Northwest, which is not close to D-M, but in drive-time not much worse than Sahuarita. Communities here I know that are nice-looking and have NO golf course are very popular due to pricing, so they come on the market too rarely. Here are ones that spring to mind:

Mona Lisa Village in 85741 which has pool, tennis, and a fitness center. It's a very convenient location a stone's throw from the Foothills Mall, Northwest Medical Center, the largest YMCA in the Tucson metro, Pima Community College, Arthur Pack Park (a county facility with a public golf course), Nanini County Library, and just about any church denomination you could name.
Tucson Real Estate in Mona Lisa Village

La Cholla Hills (85742) is a very established community about a half a mile from Mona Lisa. It has a pool and tennis. The homes are older (1970s I'd guess) but they are very well-kept or priced to remodel. And the mature landscaping is very pretty. They have held their values amazingly well in the real estate downturn. (I wish I lived there!) A major road construction project is underway on La Cholla Blvd. right now, but when it's finished it will further increase property values and it doesn't block the entrance to this community.
Tucson Real Estate in La Cholla Hills

Casitas de Castilian (85705) is a townhouse community located off Oracle Road near the Tucson Mall, a major commercial thoroughfare in Northwest Tucson, closer to downtown than the other two, yet also close to NW Medical. They have pool, tennis, and clubhouse, but no golf.
Tucson Home Search Results

Sunflower at Continental Ranch (85743) is in Marana, on the west side of I-10 but with very easy access to both the freeway and the rest of the NW suburb on the other side of the freeway. There's a guy who posts on C-D/Tucson named Tom who lives there and sings it praises. He moved there recently from the Washington, DC metro. If I remember correctly, he said one of the reasons he chose it was he didn't want to pay for a golf course. Houses here are very well-priced given that they are quite new. If you search through the Tucson threads, you might see some of his comments.
Tucson Real Estate in Continental Ranch Sunflower

Hope this helps.
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Old 04-19-2013, 11:48 PM
Location: Portland
61 posts, read 99,140 times
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Thank's Jukesgrrl..

This will help narrow down some of our research.. Once Again Thank's for your time..
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Old 04-20-2013, 05:15 AM
Location: Tucson
205 posts, read 705,033 times
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As Jukesgrll mentioned, recent transplant to Tucson up in Sunflower and I guess I've become the one man band promoting the development. It's a long way from D-M so may not be geographically appropriate for you. Lack of golf was one of the deciding factors as we didn't want to pay high HOA's to support a golf course when we don't play. Besides, Continental Ranch, of which Sunflower is a part, has courses and Sunflower residents can play those courses for a fee but not be obligated every month for the upkeep and maintenance which, in the desert, isn't inexpensive.

Up until the Twin Peaks interchange with I-10 was opened, many considered Sunflower too isolated. Now it's a five minute drive to be on I-10 which brings everything closer together. I'm very anti-crowds and so wanted to be further out with the ability to get to shopping when necessary but in all honesty, we seldom go past Costco at Orange Grove. We do go downtown for the TSO, the Fox Theater and the concert hall at U of A. As long as you're not traveling during rush hour, those are very easy trips even with the construction downtown. My wife spent days at the gem and mineral show and never had an issue with traffic.

Sunflower is also right off the loop bike trail and I've become an avid biker of late and really enjoy being able to travel the NW section without riding on major streets. Gives you a chance to see some of the desert wildlife although coming across rattlers sunning themselves on the paved path might not be a plus to some, I enjoy seeing all animal life in their natural habitat and have learned that if I respect their right to be there, don't have any problems with them. Of course, haven't been chased down by a pack of Javelinas yet

We did look south of town but found an awfully lot of rentals and slightly questionable neighborhoods. Sunflower has very strict rules on renting - only 5% of houses can be rented and then only to people that meet the requirements for the development. Most of our rentals are people who are "testing" the neighborhood and many of them end up buying.

I'm sure it's not the perfect development for many people. Houses are pretty cookie cutter, lots are small, neighbors are close and the HOA is a bit heavy handed about enforcing architectural standards and citing people for weeds growing in their yards. However, the HOA also keeps the neighborhood looking nice so it's a trade-off as it is in many "planned" developments. Amenities are great and very well maintained, lots of social activities and so far a great mix of people and backgrounds - our backyard neighbor is the former head of veterinary science at Perdue, neighbor across the street is a retired aerospace engineer and lots of retired teachers/professors.

Prices are still reasonable and still about 35% below their peak values - about where they were when the development was selling new in 1999-2002 but that's changing pretty quickly. Our $178K house in August of last year is now consistently above $200K. They'll never reach the $350K that they peaked at as they were never worth that kind of money but another 10% increase in the next 12-18 months isn't unrealistic.
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Old 04-20-2013, 10:50 PM
Location: Portland
61 posts, read 99,140 times
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Thanks Tom4416,
D-M geographics not a major factor as I will not need to travel there on a daily basis.
Like the idea of the loop bike trail as I am a cyclist and do plan to play some golf but
prefer to "pay as I play" and not have it included in my monthly association fees.
I understand the concept of HOA's and your comments about Sunflower I took as a
positive and not negative. Small lots, close neighbors, social act, mix of people, ect
all sounds great! And really do like the "limited amount of rentals in the development
I wouldn't say much about the rattlesnakes sunning themselves as I don't want to
offend them. Thank's Again to you & Jukesgrrl for your help!
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Old 04-20-2013, 11:10 PM
Location: Tucson for awhile longer
8,873 posts, read 15,590,346 times
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Tom, that's great added input. You are the glowing advertisement for Sunflower. I think it's no surprise that your development, Mona Lisa Village, and La Cholla Hills are so popular. Not everyone golfs every day. Even without your own course there are many options in NW for golfing the private clubs as a guest or on a day-pass. Also, the Crooked Tree public course at Arthur Pack County Park is very nice. My brother and his buddies golf there all the time and say it can't be beat at $38 for 18 holes walking (carts available for a fee and small discount for seniors and people golfing after 2:30 p.m. Quite a bargain compared to places that charge $138 or more! We are lucky to have Arthur Pack in the NW.
Pima County Attractions

I know a lot of people on C-D are anti-HOA, but when houses are close together as yours are, and mine are in my development, I think an HOA is a must to keep the peace and maintain real estate values. Many people in Tucson have really low standards for what is acceptable in terms of curb appeal. It's fine if you're surrounded by acres of desert, but many of us can't afford huge lots (and personally I don't want to care for one). I don't like getting a nastygram about one weed in my yard I can't even find, but when my neighbors have HUNDREDS I'm relieved that they must do something about it.

I think it also helps property values when rental options are limited in a community. Even with our HOA, you could drive the streets of my development and point out the houses that are being rented. They are rarely cared for as well.

In addition to the amenities you have at Sunflower, Marana itself continues to grow and improve. The Marana Health Center is not only amazingly wonderful, but it's becoming a center of community life. The new town hall is very swanky and the fire house down the street is also swell-looking. Have you been to the county library on Lon Adams Road yet? I think our libraries are one of the great assets of Pima County. You can easily access the book, DVD, and CD collections of the entire county system. The libraries also have a plethora of activities like author talks, educational workshops and lectures, book clubs, health and finance info, etc.
Geasa-Marana Branch Library | Pima County Public Library | Tucson, Marana, Ajo, Oro Valley, Sahuarita, Green Valley, Vail, Arivaca | Arizona
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Old 04-27-2013, 07:08 PM
Location: Portland
61 posts, read 99,140 times
Reputation: 65
I like what I see regarding Sunflower @ Marana

Thank You for Your Help!
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Old 03-30-2014, 02:36 PM
Location: Sahuarita, Arizona
1 posts, read 2,010 times
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I wouldn't dismiss Sahuarita. It's a fantastic community. And pricing is still very reasonable. It is true that way to many homes were constructed. And the underlying problem with lower priced communities has more to do with timing in my opinion than location...

Here's why...

I have worked on resale in Vail, Sahuarita, Tucson, Marana, and Oro Valley. Getting a handle on investor versus owner ratios isn't an exact science. They pull the county records and see who has different mailing address than the property address and coin them as "investors". I have sold homes to people who live in them full time and use a different address to register their property with the county.

The underlying issue is TIMING.... Some communities, Rancho Sahuarita especially, happened to open up at the PEAK of the bubble. These communities were hardest hit. Rancho Sahuarita is one of them. A bulk of the homes were sold when prices were highest there. That means most all sales are distressed in one form or another, many being sold by banks. It's a fact, banks sell homes for LESS. This drives prices DOWN.

Low prices are a GREAT opportunity as a buyer. I do not feel buying a home in Marana, Oro Valley, Tucson, or Vail at higher prices is NOT a good investment decision. Especially when Sahuarita is MUCH more affordable right now. However, LOCATION must drive your decision, paying more for convenience will out weigh your decision to buy at a lower price. If you have to commute and extra 30 minutes one way each day that means more $$ for gas. Less time spent doing overtime at work, and less time with family. This all ADDS up.

As far as retirement communities. Regardless of where you are located these were hit hardest. We are seeing MASSIVE retirement home inventories. When the economy slowed down lots of retirees lost equity in their 401k's and retirement plans. They were forced to tighten up their budgets some even to put off retirement. This had a massive impact on the retirement home market. You don't see many foreclosures or short sales there but what you see are owners holding out for better days. They list their properties and hold out with higher prices. Then the people who really need to sell end up discounting their properties dramatically. In my opinion what you see going on in the working communities is almost AMPLIFIED in retirement communities.

The long and the short of it... DO NOT DISMISS a community because of low prices. Sahuarita is still on the heal and coming back STRONG. I see resale rising, and inventories falling. Sahuarita, has a TON of potential, resale is still fighting hard against REO and short sale properties on the market though. That is what you are seeing BOTTOM line. These are the underlying cause of lower prices in my opinion. NOT investors.

There's my 2 cents.
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