Earth Notes
2:08 am
Thu November 30, 2006

Flagstaff Housing Still Hot

Flagstaff, AZ – New figures from the Office of Federal Housing
Enterprise Oversight show home prices statewide
increased by just 1 percent in the third quarter of the
year. That's only a third of the rate that prices were
going up in the prior quarter -- and far below what the
state has seen in the last few years. But the situation
is different in Northern Arizona, where homes in the
Flagstaff area went up close to 3 percent in three
months and nearly 22 percent in the last year -- a
figure that is the seventh highest in the whole nation.
Helen Hudgens Ferrell, executive director of Both
Hands, said that's to be expected because the community
is essentially landlocked, with little private property
for development.

(People want to live here. And we have yet to actively
have pressures creating denser development. So the
houses that are here tend to be very high priced.)

She said that affects the rest of the economy, citing a
recent job fair that had 800 openings but just 500
applicants.

(That kind of thing is just incredible. How can people
run a business when you can't get people to come to
work because they can't afford a place to live?)

The result is that people who work in Flagstaff live in
places like Winslow, where housing is still affordable.
For Arizona Public Radio this is Howard Fischer.