Editor’s Insight from March: Addressing The Housing Shortage Trends

We asked our contributors to answer Why is there a Housing Shortage, and What’s Being Done About it?

Despite historically low housing inventory and home prices rising over a decade with high regulatory and construction costs and 20-year high interest rates, developers have been addressing the housing shortage in Arizona with more apartments, SFR lots and introducing ADUs.

We thank our issue sponsors, Jeremy Sharpe and Rancho Sahuarita, who are Bullish on Housing in 2024.

A special report from George Larsen, returning from a PCRERC Affordable Housing Seminar, lays out a synopsis of the problem for our community.

Alexia Smokler, Colette Massengale, and Brennon Thompson, writing for the National Association of Realtors called Realtors to Action recently in Bold Action Needed. Something Realtors deal with daily for would-be home buyers facing the erosion of affordability in home ownership.

Home closings are down by 4.26%, with housing permits up by 4.04% over the prior year in Tucson MSA. Jim Daniel of RLBrown Housing Reports walks readers through it in Tucson New Home Builders Wrap up 2023 with a Solid 3,417 Home Sales.

David Godlewski, President of Southern Arizona Home Builders Association, tells us what SAHBA is working on to increase the supply of homes locally.

Will White of Land Advisors Organization fittingly compares the Tucson Land Market to A Jenga Game of Shortages, Reactivity, and Delicate Momentum, an image that won’t leave your head after reading it.

Developer Sunbelt Holdings discusses what they are doing in Sunbelt Holdings Leading Tucson’s Land Renaissance in 2024.

Suzanne Droubie, Pima County Assessor, would like everyone to Understand Property Valuation and the Appeal Process in Pima County as she explains the Assessor’s Office’s role is not to “be right” but to “get it right” as it strives to maintain the public’s trust.

Then Aaron Worda with AARP sets the stage for Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) as Beneficial, and We Must Support Their Development. To address the financing issues, Jonathan Spurr was invited back to discuss how to finance an ADU in Creative Number Crunching for that ADU Construction.

ADUs deliver affordable housing and rental opportunities at a time of great need. The City of Tucson has been leading the ADU program in the state, and our state legislature is about to pass SB-1415 and HB-2299, allowing casitas statewide. Both bills could come to a vote as early as this week.

As part of the team working on the Casita Model Plan Library in Tucson,  Jessica Janecek updates readers on the ADU program in Casitas in Tucson: A Model Plan Library and has a new webpage to showcase the selected designs pre-approved by the city.

We then asked some of our local designers of these ADUs to showcase their solutions.

In Oxygenhaus.com Brings Advanced Technology to Backyard ADUs, Frank Eliopoulos presents its luxurious amenities while remaining affordable and cost-effective, making it an attractive investment for homeowners.

Jack Robinson, an architect, profiles his plans in Jack Robinson’s 2-Bedroom Casita for Tucson, focusing on the ADU as a “down-sized” unit for homeowners wanting to rent the main house and the adaptability for aging in place.

In Expect to See Grasshopper Houses in Tucson, we were able to ask questions of Alejandro Fernandez, the co-designer of the Grasshopper House, who has a great deal of experience in modular construction and was able to answer all our questions in a Q&A.

Kelsi Montgomery, AIA, brings us the Desert Casita: An ADU for Life in Tucson and a great appreciation for her ADU design for Tucson’s climate.

All of these designs are in various stages of pre-approval with the City.

Urban Infill Project has the only models fully permitted and ready to go by Tucson. Valerie Lane explains how Small Homes Help Fill a Big Void for Shelter in Tucson.

We sincerely thank everyone who contributed to this Trend Report issue and also our Trend Report team: Patti van Leer, Michael Rossmann, Melissa Vucijevic, and Jack Paddock. We’ve already started work on April’s “Retail” issue that answers the question, “is retail here to stay?”

Thanks to you, our readers, for your continued support. As always, we appreciate your feedback and welcome your comments.

Stay Sharp with Actionable Insights!

Karen Schutte,
Trend Report
Managing Editor


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