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Chino Valley Review | Chino Valley, Arizona

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11/13/2013 9:13:00 AM
Chino Valley recovering from housing slump
Review/Ken HedlerThese vacant lots in the Highlands Ranch subdivision off Road 1 North eventually will sprout houses.
Review/Ken Hedler

These vacant lots in the Highlands Ranch subdivision off Road 1 North eventually will sprout houses.

Ken Hedler
Special to the Review

The housing recovery has finally come to Chino Valley, and the issuance of building permits indicates that the recovery started in June.

The town's Development Services Department has issued monthly permits exceeding $1 million in valuation in every month since June, except for September, where valuations were about $439,299.

Single-family homes are driving the valuation totals, according to Dan Trout, chief building official and deputy director of Development Services. "I think it is a combination of the economy turning around and the lack of inventory," Trout said, referring to homes on the market.

Trout's office issued one permit for single-family homes in June, five permits in July, three in August, two in September and three in October. The permits totaled 34 in October, with an overall value exceeding $1.1 million.

By contrast, Development Services issued only 18 permits valued at $852,988 in October 2012. The three permits that month for single-family homes accounted for $729,390 of the total valuations.

"We were pretty flat for a while," Trout said.

The improvement in overall building valuations started in June, the final month of the 2012-13 fiscal year. Chino Valley posted at least two fiscal years in a row, ending that month, with lackluster building of single-family homes, the Review reported July 17.

Development Services issued only nine permits for single-family homes in 2011-12 and seven permits for single-family homes in 2012-13.

Contrast those two years with the 13 permits Development Services issued for single-family homes during the first four months of the 2013-14 fiscal year.

Most of the homes are being built in subdivisions, Trout said. He said eight homes are under construction in Bright Star and four are being built in Highlands Ranch.

Trout said on Nov. 6 that his office received four sets of plans for review of homes proposed for Bright Star and two sets of plans for review for homes in Highlands Ranch.

Like Trout, Jim Reed, project manager for Yavapai County for Phoenix-based Mandalay Communities, sees an improving real estate market.

"We are just getting started in Bright Star," Reed said, referring to the subdivision off Road 2 North. He said Mandalay pulled five permits for Bright Star over the past three to four months.

Reed said the availability of a "more affordable price point" makes Chino Valley an attractive market for buyers. The homes Mandalay is building in Bright Star range in price from around $230,000 to $290,000. They cover just under 1,900 square feet to about 2,500 square feet, and contain three to four bedrooms and two to two and a half bathrooms.

The homebuilding activity is good news to Tracie Schimikowsky, director of operations for the Chino Valley Chamber of Commerce.

"That is great news for the area, and it is nice to see folks are coming to Chino Valley and making Chino Valley their home," she said.

Trout said he expects homebuilding to slow during the holidays.

"It is a normal trend," he said. "It usually starts back up in late January, and we hope to see it continue as is."


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