News Article From: 03-30-2006
The first article, Maricopa County movin' on up millionaire list, from the Arizona Republic, reports that Maricopa County ranks fourth in the United States in the number of millionaire households. It counts 106,210, or roughly 8.2 percent of all households, as having $1 million-plus in net worth. In 2006, Maricopa County ranked sixth. The information is from a report prepared by TNS Financial Services, a British market research firm. Los Angeles County took the top spot with 262,800 millionaire households, followed by Cook County in Illinois with 167,873 households. "You're a large county to begin with, and I would imagine that a lot of people retire to places in Arizona, particularly the Phoenix/Scottsdale area because the cost of living there is a little more favorable than a place like San Francisco," said Jeanette Luhr, manager of the study.
The second article, Phoenix a buyers' market, from the Arizona Republic, reports that homebuilders are wheeling and dealing as a result of stagnant new-home sales, offering all sorts of incentives such as free cars, thousands of dollars worth of incentives, and other freebies. "This is proof that the market has turned from a sellers' market to a buyers' market," said RL Brown, publisher of the Phoenix Housing Market Letter. In February, Scott Communities began offering a Honda Civic, Honda Element or $15,000 off the base price of a home. Other builders are offering huge incentives on "spec" homes, which have increased in numbers as buyers back out of contracts, many because they can't sell their existing home. Even with incentives, consumers are being very cautious, said Margie O'Campo de Castillo, a broker/owner of Arizona Dream Realty. "The incentives help, but I don't see people jumping up and saying, 'Let's go buy'. Right now. there's a lot of gun-shy buyers," she added.