Northeast Valley

Hiking tips for Phoenix, Scottsdale visitors

It's gonna be a hot one today, folks! The metro Phoenix area is slated to see 98 degrees Farenheit today.

If you're visiting the metro Phoenix-Scottsdale area and you're considering hiking some of our beautiful mountain trails today, take note...  it's hotter than you think, and the trails are steeper than you think.

Remember that our firefighters routinely pull tourists (and sometimes even locals) off the mountain trails on stretchers and take them to the E.R.

Here are some tips to keep you safe when you're hiking the desert mountain trails of the metro Phoenix-Scottsdale area. Tips courtesy of the Scottsdale Parks department and the Phoenix Parks Department, and you can see more tips on their websites.

  • Always tell someone where you're going, when you'll be back, and stick to your plan!

  • Hike with a friend; it's safer and more fun.

  • Bring lots of water, three or four times as much as you think you need. The Scottsdale Parks department recommends at least one gallon of water per person, per day. I personally think that a standard-sized 16 to 19 ounce bottle is enough for about 15 minutes when it's really hot outside.

  • Wear a hat! If you've forgotten a hat, cover your head with whatever's handy

  • Wear and carry sunscreen, SPF 15 at minimum. Reapply more often than you think you need to.

  • Wear closed toe hiking shoes, or at least wear sneakers.

  • Rest 10 to 30 minutes for each hour of walking, depending on your overall level of fitness.

Get some info on the trail before you go. The Phoenix Parks department has a wonderful online library of information about the trails, their length, their degree of difficulty, locations of Park Ranger ramadas, etc.  The City of Scottsdale also has a wonderful online resource about their hiking trail system.

Trail etiquette

  • ALWAYS stay on a designated trail. City ordinances prohibit trailblazing.

  • Learn to share the trails with all other users.

  • In general, bike riders yield to both hikers and horseback riders; hikers yield to horseback riders. However, for all trail users, downhill yields to uphill. Use common sense and courtesy while on the trails.

  • Announce your intentions and slow your pace when passing someone on the trails

Well dear reader, I hope you have an enjoyable experience hiking our desert southwest trails! I'll be out there on South Mountain, sweating it out with the rest of you today, April 1, 2011.

Just wondering... have you ever thought of buying a vacation property in the metro Phoenix region? I am a Realtor, after all, so I tend to talk about property values all the time. Can I ask what you paid for your seasonal rental? I know, it's a pretty personal question. But we're on the Internet, so nobody will hear your answer. Did you know that you can pick up a vacation condo in the metro Phoenix area for as little as $25,000 to $50,000? Really. And after 3 or 4 years of price declines in Phoenix, it is possible to pick up a small home in several metro-Phoenix communities for about $100,000, give or take $25,000.

Want to do a little online home browsing? Search Phoenix-area homes for sale, online. When you're ready for a Realtor's help, contact us, The Phoenix Agents at Thompson's Realty. Real people, making real estate, real simple.

Recommended blog and handyman

Psst...  I found a really outstanding blog and an excellent craftsman who does home remodeling projects in the Greater Phoenix area: The RemodGeek. I can't say enough good stuff about him, but his resume actually speaks for itself:
…spent years in construction, residential and commercial, and remodeling from foundation to punch list. I have been a Union  Carpenter, (both wood and steel stud), Remodeling Contractor, Crew Foreman, Superintendent, Project Manager, Cabinet Maker,  (both custom and production) Professional Drywaller, (from single family houses, and commercial drywall, including fire safety renovations, multi-hour drywall assemblies, elevator shafts, lead-lined radiation rooms, and fire rated partitions. If it can be covered in drywall, I have probably done it, multiple times.

I worked in the auto recycling (junkyards) and bodyshop business for 9 years. When I am not remodeling, I build websites, specialty computers, and networks for my internet clients.

Remodeling for Geeks masthead

That’s his blog masthead; it's him reflected in a shiny engine block. It's a good example of the creative level of photography the RemodGeek posts.  In the funny way of the Internet, RemodGeek and I haven’t met in person, yet. We've emailed, and his blog's in my feed reader.

No matter. The high level of quality craftsmanship he puts into his remodeling projects is crystal clear. If you need remodeling work done around the house, or just need advice on your next Do It Yourself project, check out his site.  <link :>

Note: Author was given nothing of value other than goodwill in consideration for writing & posting this piece. Whenever you're hiring people to do work on/in your home, do your homework: references, licenses, Better Business Bureau, Registrar of Contractors, etc. ThePhoenixAgents recommends vendors from time to time because we were impressed by them, not because we guarantee their work.

The Highs and the Lows, some more

A periodic series about the highest and lowest priced homes in the local MLS. Properties must be:

  • single family, detached homes

  • bank owned

  • currently Active in the ARMLS (Ariz. Regional Multiple Listing Service)

  • located in the Greater Phoenix area (Wickenburg, Florence, Coolidge, etc are excluded; Surprise, Buckeye, Queen Creek, etc are included)

1 House, 2 Lots, $14,840

low, 1 home 2 lots, EF

Property is a 624 sq.ft. home with 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, a family room and a kitchen. House sits on 2 lots in the Valencia subdivision of Buckeye with a total of 13,500 sq.ft. Owned by Fannie Mae and Fannie's Realtor says the property is eligible for Fannie Mae HomePath Renovation Financing.

low, 1 home 2 lots, map(click to enlarge map)

See it there on the far West side, in Buckeye . . . that little black & white star? That’s the location. I sold a home next door to this subdivision, in 2006. I say from personal experience that the surrounding homes are mid-1990s and newer with stucco exteriors and tile roofs. This home is probably the sore thumb in the neighborhood, and almost certainly needs to be just knocked down.

6 Flat Acres in Paradise Valley, $4,850,000

high, pitch and putt SAT close

  • 7,595 square foot house

  • 4 bedrooms, 4-1/2 bathrooms, 4 car garage, pool

  • originally built in 1972

  • a self-contained 500 square foot guest house with full kitchen

  • located on 5.75 acres (250,266 sf)

  • property taxes are $23,616 annually for tax year 2009

The grounds have a pitch & putt golf course, tennis court and gazebo. Located near Lincoln Drive and Invergordon Road.

High, pitch and putt MAP

The former owners tried to sell this home & land for over 3 years before the bank finally took it back via foreclosure. Originally listed for sale at $14,000,000 in January 2006. Later the owners tried to rent it out for Super Bowl Week January 30th to February 4th, 2008 for $100,000. A hundred grand for a week. Mind blowing! Finally in July 2009 the home was foreclosed on. In September 2009 the bank listed it for sale at $5,250,000.

As near as I can tell by zooming in on the satellite photo and Google maps, the house is round. Well, not round round, but built around this central courtyard.

high, pitch and putt COURT

In all the time it’s spent on the local MLS, there are only 3 interior photos of the home, which one Realtor described as “the most romantic estate in Arizona” and another described as “magical.” Magical? One hopes the bank removed the fairies and elves before listing the home for sale. Or at least got rid of the orcs. Nasty, those orcs.

high, pitch and putt KIT Kitchen

high, pitch and putt LIV Living/Family (?) Room

high, pitch and putt DIN Dining Room

At first I thought, “I can’t believe that’s not sold; 6 flat acres in Paradise Valley is easily worth more than the asking price.” But jumbo loans are wicked hard to get these days, and the tax assessor has the property valued at only $3,610,800. Plus the buyer would have to love the ‘look’ of the home, which I call Old Spanish Trail House in my head. I’ve seen this type of decor done extremely well, and it’s beautiful when well executed. But it’s undeniably not popular these days, and it's difficult to change the look & feel of this decor to anything else without investing huge bucketloads of cash.

That’s it for today’s Highs and Lows. View other posts in this series. Thanks for reading! Call, email or text us if you’d like help finding your bank-owned bargain.

Heather, 602.999.8831
Chris, 623.570.9940

The Highs and the Lows #4

Wherein I periodically post about the highest and lowest priced homes in the local MLS. Properties must be:

  • single family, detached homes

  • bank owned

  • currently Active in the ARMLS (AZ Regional Multiple Listing Service)

  • located in the general metro Phoenix region (Wickenburg, Florence, Coolidge, etc are excluded but Surprise, Buckeye, Queen Creek, etc are included)

$4,100 – No, that’s not a typo

4 bedroom, 2 bath, 1738 square feet built in 2002. Located in the West Valley near the intersection of Glendale & Dysart roads.

4100 EF

4100 map (click to enlarge any image here)

Listing Realtor’s notes state: “Please View property before making offer. Home has many cracks inside and out.” I’ll say. . . .

4100 BR

4100 ceiling

4100 EF crack

4100 fence

The seller’s Realtor’s notes go on to say “15+ offers received we will submit all offers Friday 7pm expect seller response mid-week.”

I’m no builder and I haven’t seen this house in person but it looks in pictures like the home is shifting right off it’s foundation. Or maybe it’s on top of expansive soil. Regardless, this has got to be a case of either major repairs or tear the whole thing down and rebuild it. It’s located in a neighborhood with a Homeowners Association (HOA) so you’d have to comply with their rules for either project. I’m astounded that anybody would want to pay anything for this home.

What do y’all think??

Buddy, can you spare $5 . . . .million?

Nearly 12,000 square feet under roof, on 4.7 acres near Pima & Happy Valley roads. Originally listed in November 2006 for $10,000,000!

5M EF click to enlarge any photo here


5M bath

5M shower

Venturing out on a limb here, my personal opinion: this is bad taste on an epic scale. That bathroom makes me feel like Las Vegas, and not in a good way. What do y’all say? Luxurious beauty? Or Liberace’s hideaway?

Oh by the way, last episode’s $6.5 million dollar luxury estate in Silverleaf is still for sale. View other posts in this series.

That’s it for today’s Highs and Lows. Thanks for reading! Call, email or text us if you’d like helping your bank-owned bargain.

Heather, 602.999.8831
Chris, 623.570.9940

Dinner and a Movie at Farrelli’s

Farrelli's Cinema Supper Club is just about the most fun you can have in a movie theater. Located in Scottsdale, they're an intimate movie theater which shows a movie while they serve you dinner. It’s a real sit-down dinner, with waiters in long aprons and real cloth napkins, and high-quality food. It's just so charming that I love it. Highly recommended!

Here's their schedule for today:

Farrellis Cinema Supper Club schedule for Mon Mar 1 (click to enlarge)

Farrelli's is having an Oscar watching party on March 7. The event features a Red Carpet Walk, prizes and a four-course Specialty Awards menu. Head on over to Farrelli's website for details. This website changes regularly to include the current dinner & a movie special. Don't miss the 20% off coupon at the very bottom of the site!

Farrelli’s is open 7 days a week from 10am to Midnight. They encourage you to arrive 1/2 hour before the film showing time, so you can get a seat. Seats fill up quickly, so reservations are encouraged.  Contact information, location information is below (click to enlarge).

Farrellis contact info

Disclaimer: Blog authors have not received anything from Farrelli’s in exchange for writing this post. Please contact Farrelli’s directly to verify hours of operation, films being shown, pricing, etc., since blog authors relied on Farrelli’s website for all information contained herein.

The Highs and The Lows #3

Wherein I periodically post about the highest and lowest priced homes in the local MLS. Properties must be:

  • single family, detached homes

  • bank owned

  • currently Active in the ARMLS (AZ Regional Multiple Listing Service)

  • located in the general metro Phoenix region (Wickenburg, Florence, Coolidge, etc are excluded but Surprise, Buckeye, Queen Creek, etc are included)

$12,500 – The Value’s in the Land

12,500 REO Dec 10 2009

Once again, a crispy fried special for the guy or gal itching to prove their handyman skills. Seems there’s a lot of those lately. Hmmmm. Former owner rage?

From the MLS description:

Property has been damaged by fire and is sold AS IS. Seller will not make any repairs. PLEASE DO NOT ENTER THE PROPERTY DUE TO SAFETY ISSUES.

The poor house might be hexed. It’s been foreclosed on 3 times since 1992. First, HUD took it back in 1992 and sold it in 1993. A mere two years later it was foreclosed on again, and resold to a new owner. That owner was foreclosed on this past summer and the bank relisted it as a foreclosure/REO property for sale for $31,000 in September. The fire must have happened sometime in September or October, after which the price was dropped to the current $12,500.

$6,500,000 – View in Exclusive Silverleaf Community

6,900,00 REO Dec 10 2009

13,700 square feet of Italianate luxury. Marble, travertine, barrel vaulted ceilings, etc., ad naseum. Wretched excess at it’s finest. Consumerist Keeping Up with the Joneses to the max.

The land (2.48 acres) was purchased in 2004 for just over a million dollars. The owner tried to sell it as “land + house plans” from December 2006 through May 2007 for $2,600,000. Sometime between May 2007 and May 2009 somebody built the existing home and tried to sell it for $8,900,000.

Mind you, they tried to sell it with no interior photos other than this

6,500,000 REO Dec 10 2009 Seriously? You want me to shell out nearly $9 million dollars and you’re going to show me only this?

The seller finally dropped their price to $6,950,000 before the bank repossessed it in October 2009.  I bet you could get the house from the bank for about $5.5M. ‘Course, it probably needs about a million bucks in finishing and furnishing. Feeling flush? Call me!

View previous Highs and Lows posts

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REOs Rule, But Not Everywhere

Image ID 1150734 by svilen001 Image courtesy of Stock Exchange user svilen001

Just a little blurb from one of our favorite title/escrow officers, Maggie Clark of Equity Title. This gives a good picture of just how much the REO (“real estate owned”, i.e. bank owned foreclosure) properties are driving the market lately.

Southwest Valley - REO active listings represent 16% of the total listings, and 50% of the sales for the last month.

Peoria and Glendale - REO active listings represent 17% of the total listings, and 54% of the sales for the last month.

Scottsdale - REO active listing represent 6% of the total listings, 29% of the sales for the last month.

We still get calls on a regular basis from buyers seeking second homes and winter vacation homes. They often ask for Scottsdale, and expect prices to have nose-dived there just like everywhere else. Not the case! Scottsdale hasn’t been hit with the tsunami of foreclosure much of the rest of the Valley of Sun has. Not as many bank owned homes on the market at bargain bazaar pricing equals prices have not nose-dived. Not in Scottsdale anyway.

You want bargain basement, clearance sale pricing? Go to the older neighborhoods in Phoenix, and to the West side neighborhoods of Peoria, Goodyear, Avondale, Tolleson, Maryvale, Buckeye, Peoria, etc. The far Southeast has seen plummeting prices too: think Queen Creek, Florence and Apache Junction.

Photos Make a Huge Difference Too

I’m piling on to Chris’ post yesterday about how staging can determine whether buyers make offers or make tracks.

Pictures make a huge difference too. Buyers love LOTS of pictures. Quantity doesn’t substitute for quality however.

A word about the condo Chris wrote about yesterday, with the fabulous view. We both agreed it was one of the best, and possibly the best view we’d ever seen. Between us we’ve been showing homes for 9 years so we’ve seen a lot of view variations.

I tell you, I was literally transfixed by the view from this condo; it stopped me in my tracks. Had I been shopping, I'd have whipped out my checkbook right there and offered the seller full list price. I don’t think Chris stressed enough that you could see all of these in a 180 degree panorama off the balcony:

  • The McDowells

  • Camelback Mountain

  • Mummy Mountain

  • Squaw Peak / Piestawa Peak

  • South Mountain

  • The Estrellas

  • North Mountain

This? Is the only view picture the listing shows:

Grayhawk blah condo only view pic

I don’t know about you, but all I see in that picture is some scrub desert and bird poop dripping down the balcony wall.

Sellers, make sure that if your property has a remarkable feature, it’s pictured prominently in the MLS listing your Realtor creates.

Buyers, looking for a drop dead view at bargain basement prices? This view on a luxury estate is easily worth $2 million. You can own the view and the cute 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo that surrounds it for $149,500. It's bank owned and priced to move, so don't dawdle.

The Highs and the Lows 2

Wherein I periodically post about the highest and lowest priced homes in the local MLS. Properties must be:

  • single family, detached homes

  • bank owned

  • currently Active in the ARMLS (AZ Regional Multiple Listing Service)

  • located in the general metro Phoenix region (Wickenburg, Florence, Coolidge, etc are excluded but Surprise, Buckeye, Queen Creek, etc are included)

$20,00 Fire Damaged Tear Down

Fancy yourself a handy person? You’ll need to be. This 4 bedroom, 2 bathroom house in Maryvale Terrace was torched.

The Low 09 06 09 damage

The exterior might be salvageable though and it seems like a nice big yard.

The Low 09 06 09 EF

The Low 09 06 09 BACK

Recently, same-sized homes in the area that are move-in ready and remodeled have topped out at $80,000 to $90,000. I’m no contractor but it seems like you could rebuild this poor fire damaged little casa for $60,000. Again, I’m not a contractor but I’m not sure there’s room here to rehab it and sell at a profit.

Paradise Valley Acre Plus, Rebuilt in 2007 - $4,085,000

The High 09 06 09 EF

Check out that view of Camelback Mountain in the upper left of this picture! That’s worth a million right there. The lot is 1.14 acres, so there’s another $900,000 or million in value.

The house itself is 8,422 square feet, 5 bedrooms, 6.5 baths, with a 4 car garage. It was completely rebuilt in 2007. Pictures seem to show it was 100% torn down and rebuilt, not just remodeled.

The High 09 06 09 POOL

The High 09 06 09 PAT

The high 09 06 09 KIT

Based on this picture, the home has everything you’d expect in a home in this price range: built in island and cabinetry that can pass for being hand carved in the mythical Old Country, miles of slab granite and travertine, stainless steel double stoves (probably Viking), high ceilings and crown molding … just enough to make your neighbors jealous.

The High 09 06 09 DIN

Personally, I say “so much for the idea that bank-owned homes are screaming great bargains.”  I think this house is probably worth about what they’re asking for it, maybe even less.

What do you think?

View other Highs and Lows posts.

Technorati tags:  Phoenix real estate

The Highs and The Lows

Wherein I periodically post about the highest and lowest priced homes in the local MLS. Properties must be:

  • single family, detached homes

  • bank owned

  • currently Active in the ARMLS (AZ Regional Multiple Listing Service)

  • located in the general metro Phoenix region (Wickenburg, Florence, Coolidge, etc are excluded but Surprise, Buckeye, Queen Creek, etc are included)

$12,500  Handyman Special

The Low, 08 02 09

Built in 1963 with 3 bedrooms and 1.75 bathrooms. It’s 1,374 square feet with a 1-car carport and no pool on a lot of 6,312 square feet. It’s located about 1,200 feet from the campus of Grand Canyon University, so it might make a fabulous little student rental for some lucky investor.  At this price, it’s almost 100% guaranteed that lenders won’t touch the deal, so bring your checkbook. Recently homes nearby & similarly sized, with most or all of the remodeling work done have sold in the mid $50,000s. Rents in the area seem to run about $850/month.

$4,250,000 Old World Villa on 1.5 Acres

The High EF 08 02 09

The High KIT 08 02 09

The High MLS 08 02 09

Built in 2003, this 7,998 square foot beauty boasts 5 bedrooms, 5-1/2 bathrooms, a large rectangular pool, a 4-car garage and an 800 square foot guest house.  It sold in April of 2002 for $4,300,000 according to the MLS data. Interestingly, the tax records show a transaction at that time with a sales price of only $2,850,000. Don’t know what kind of shim-sham was going on there. Looking for a little something for your sweetie? Contact Mid First Private Bank. Or us. Heck, go with us.

View other Highs and Lows posts.

Technorati Tags: Phoenix Real Estate Statistics

Phoenix is a Big Grid

Here’s a bit of handy introduction-to-the-Valley sort of info about Phoenix’s street system.

phx is a grid map (click to enlarge/”back” to return)

Thoughtfully, our Phoenician forebears laid out our fair city on a big grid. Nearly every street is straight and major streets are 1 mile apart. Numbered streets go north & south, named streets go east-west.

lost already?
try Chris' much more concise post about driving about Phoenix,
or a humorous take on driving in Greater Phoenix

Obviously the big yellow lines are freeways (check out our funky freeway names). The smaller yellow lines on the map above are the major streets crossing Phoenix. Where the major streets cross each other you can count on a huge intersection (4 to 10 lanes wide!) and probably strip mall shopping.

Check out a few of the bigger shopping areas by seeing the Google maps Street View of these intersections: Tatum and Shea, Camelback & 20th Street35th Avenue and Glendale.

North-South Streets Are Numbered

All the north-south streets start out on the grid counting from Central Avenue, which is “0”. Heading east from Central Avenue, you’ll cross 1st Street, 2nd Street, 3rd Street, and so on.

Heading west from Central, you’ll cross over 1st Avenue, 2nd Avenue (you get the picture by now). The I-17 freeway interrupts at about 27th Avenue, and then you’re off again, hitting major streets at 1-mile intervals.

“The Sevens” (7th Street and 7th Avenue) are major traffic arteries for mid-town Phoenicians. During rush hour, they become reversible travel lanes, lovingly called “suicide lanes” by long-time residents. Don’t want to risk the suicide lanes? Check out this post where I blogged about my bus ride up and down the 7th Street route.

East-West Streets Are Named

The major east-west streets are all 1 mile apart and have names instead of numbers. At first the city planners used President’s names for the E-W streets. After they ran out of Presidents, city planners used names of prominent Phoenicians and notable farms, ranches or landmarks.

Indian School Road is named for The Phoenix Indian School, an actual school for the city’s Indian children which opened in the 1890’s.  Thankfully, Phoenicians figured out segregation and forced Anglo-ization of Indian children was a pretty awful policy and the school was closed (but not until 1988).

Bethany Home Road is named for the the old Bethany Home, a mental institution. Etc. (I’m almost afraid to do any more research into Phoenix street names, for fear of finding more politically incorrect and/or shameful origins of street names.)

In high school Driver’s Ed class I remember being made to memorize the names of the streets from Baseline Road on the south end of town to Beardsley Road which was, at that point in time, the northernmost edge of metro Phoenix. We also had to memorize the north-south range number assigned to each street.

McDowell Road is 1600 North, Thomas is 2900 North, Indian School is 4100 North, Camelback is 5000 North, etc. At the time I thought it was the stupidest thing I’d ever done. Now? With 20+ years of driving around Phoenix under my belt, I realize that anybody can be their own GPS system if they memorize the East-West range markers. Check them out here, on local artist Brad Hall’s awesome website about historic Phoenix.

How to Work the Grid

Let’s say you have to get to 2917 E. Camelback Road in Phoenix. It’s on the east side of town because of the E so you’ll be dealing with Streets, not Avenues. You know Camelback is 5000 North. And the 2917 tells you it’s at 29th Street. So it’s 2900 east and 5000 north. Essentially, if you know which are the major streets, you can vector your way from anywhere to 2917 E Camelback Road.

Every Rule Has Exceptions

Outside the boundaries of Phoenix proper, the rules for street names and number ranges change. Other Valley towns made their own street names, grids and rules. And sometimes within Phoenix boundaries, the street name changes mid-town just to keep you on your toes. Dunlap becomes Olive. Glendale Avenue becomes Lincoln Drive.

Cave Creek Road and Grand Avenue cut through Phoenix crosswise, on angles going northeast-southwest, or northwest-southeast. Again, I’m pretty certain someone thought this would just keep things interesting. Where Cave Creek and Grand cross ‘normal’ streets that go N-S or E-W you get a 5-point intersection. And more, bigger shopping strip malls.

Which leads me to the single most useful description I’ve ever devised for explaining metro Phoenix to folks from other towns: Phoenix is one immense suburb liberally studded with strip malls and numbered in a regular, predictable pattern.

We also have about 300 days of sunshine per year, no natural disasters, lots of outdoor recreational spots, and a generally pretty darn friendly population. Nearly everybody living here is from somewhere else. Personally I think that makes folks friendlier.

If you’re new to metro Phoenix, welcome! Hope this and other posts about getting around Phoenix are useful. If you’re ready to become a Phoenix area homeowner, contact us. If you’re thinking about moving here but not quite ready to call a Realtor, browse around. You might especially like our Moving page.
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Several Valley Schools Named Among Nation's Best

The Phoenix Business Journal reports that fifteen of the Valley’s high schools were recently named among the nation’s best by Newsweek magazine.

Newsweek ranked schools by calculating the number of students per school who take either an Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and/or Cambridge tests, divided by the total number of students at the school.

It’s an enduring urban legend that metro Phoenix’s school systems stink. Some years ago the state department of education insituted a grading system and now grades schools as "excelling" (the best), "performing", "underperforming" and so on.

Personally, I don't have kids so I can’t comment on the myth and I'm unfamiliar with the criterion used at the state level to determine who's Excelling. I'd bet that if you ask people "Are Arizona's schools sub-par?" you'd get a lot of Yes answers. But if you ask parents "Do you have confidence in YOUR child's school?" you'd also get a lot of Yes's. In other words, people are prone to think "the system" stinks but "my kids' schools are OK."  That's just human nature.

Regardless, it is nice to have a national newsmagazine name a handful of Arizona’s high schools “best”. Arizona schools on the list were:

Want to search for homes for sale in these school districts? Email us and we’ll hook you up.
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Friday Fun

Uber blogger Theresa Boardman does a Fridays are for Fun series. Since I'm totally exhausted this week, I'm shamelessly copying her style.

Henceforth (or at least until I forget I made this mini-resolution), Fridays are for Fun here at the North Phoenix Agent blog.

As a Realtor, I drive a lot. I mean A LOT. This? Warmed the cockles of my heart.

[caption id="attachment_1889" align="alignnone" width="300" caption="Woot Woot!"]Woot Woot![/caption]

I filled the tank of my Jeep Wrangle for just over $31. I can't remember the last time I did that. When gas prices peaked at near $4 a gallon, I was plunking down a cool $80 to fill the tank. It's not like I could put clients into a gas-efficient subcompact either. So I grin and bear it. But when I filled up this afternoon I did a little jig of joy.

Have a great weekend y'all!