Hiking In The Valley – What You Need To Know!

Black Mountain photoArizona weather is a huge draw to locals and visitors to hike the many beautiful trails the valley has to offer.  Authorities are concerned about inexperienced hikers who are unfamiliar with the territory and over estimate their hiking ability and lack of preparation.  Don’t let the comfortable temperature of mid 70ies fool you. Firefighters sill get a lot of calls for heat related complications this time of the year.  You should not hike when you are not adequately rested, hydrated properly and have the appropriate clothing.

Here are some helpful tips to stay safe while hiking:

  • Avoid hiking alone in secluded areas where there is no cellular reception. It’s always best to have a hiking buddy.  If you decided to go on your own, be sure to tell someone when and where you are going.
  • Start hydrating long before you go on the hike and ALWAYS bring water.
  • Make sure your phone is charged
  • Wear appropriate clothing, preferably with UV protections and durable hiking shoes.
  • Sun protection is imperative! Bring a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen.
  • Be familiar with the trails and take a photo of the trail map before you head out.

Check out these beautiful trails in and near Scottsdale, AZ:

Tom’s Tumb
Pinnacle Peak Trail
Lost Dog Wash Trail
Black Mountain Trail
Apache Wash Trail

Are you considering moving to North Scottsdale?  Browse this map of neighborhoods to learn about the communities and view homes for sale listings.

Are High-Performing Schools a Selling Feature?

Notre Dame Prep School photoHomes in proximity to good schools have higher property values.   Homes in neighborhoods with highly-rated public schools often are priced higher than homes that are not because home buyers seek out good schools.  These good schools, in turn, increase property values for everyone.  If your children are no longer school-aged, or whether or not you have children, good schools in good school districts are an amenity that any parent wants, and these desired amenities strengthen and increase the value of the homes in those neighborhoods. This increased value benefits everyone, parents and non-parents alike.

According to the National Association of Realtors ®, “Of all the local neighborhood amenities that can influence a buyer’s decision to purchase a home, proximity to good quality schools is one of the most influential.”   The good news for those seeking to buy or sell homes in the Northeast Valley, including Paradise Valley, North Scottsdale and Fountain Hills, is these high-performing school districts featuring “good schools” are already in place.  The schools in Northeast Valley are part of the Paradise Valley Unified School District, the Scottsdale Unified School District and Fountain Hills Unified School District.

While some of these schools permit open enrollment, if a particular school is not accepting new students, residing in that school’s zoned neighborhood may be required before your student may be enrolled.  While I can help you narrow down your school choices when searching for your next home, you can also get started researching these districts.  Websites such as www.greatschools.org break down the test scores as well as the community ratings of each school district, as well as the schools themselves.  Another website, www.schooldigger.com, ranks the schools using criteria such as student to teacher ratio and test scores.

If you’re selling your home, I will help you to highlight the proximity of your home to good schools in my marketing.  With my assistance, you can rest assured that your decision to buy a home, if based on proximity to a good school is important, is a sound one.

Get started with getting a free home value estimate.

What’s with all the canals in Phoenix?

Visitors to Phoenix and even long-time Phoenicians may have wondered about the canals that stream throughout the Valley of the Sun.  Did you know that there are more than 180 miles of canals in Metro Phoenix?  (ArizonaForward.org).  That’s more miles of canals than Venice and Amsterdam combined!  Venice has about 26 miles and Amsterdam has about 60 miles of waterways.

Arcadia Canal photoThe origin of the canals in Phoenix stems from the Hohokam natives who constructed the canals to harness the Salt River to grow enough crops for 50,000 people prior to A.D. 1450.   In modern-day, prior to the 1950s when air-conditioning became more common for Phoenix residents, community members used to swim in the canals and picnicked on the banks of the canals.  The canal banks used to be lined with cottonwoods and willow trees, creating a riparian habitat.  The Salt River Project then began to modify the canals to make them more efficient.  SRP lined the canals with concrete and gave them steeper banks.  Swimming was banned not much longer afterward, as these changes to the canals’ structure made the water flow much more quickly.

Along with the modification and modernization of the canals came a more efficient cleaning process in the mid-1980s.  While heavy machinery used to be utilized to clean the canals (removing weeds and algae), nowadays SRP relies on fish to clean the canals.  These fish are a type of grass carp, called the white amur.  The white amur can eat nearly three-quarters of its weight in algae and weeds each day.  (http://www.srpnet.com/environment/amur.aspx).

What’s next for the canals in Phoenix?  City planners have proposed Grand Canalscape, a $22.5 million project which will improve a 12-mile section of the canal system from I-17 to Tempe (known the Grand Canal).  This neglected area of the canals will receive a paved multi-use pathway, lighting, landscaping and crosswalks and traffic signals where the canal intersects roads.  Funding will come from a combination of federal grants, SRP funds and city funds.  (http://grandcanalscape.com/).

CLICK HERE to learn about Scottsdale Homes and Neighborhoods.

We are predicted to be #1 Hottest Market


With inventory dropping and price/sq’ on the rise, I am not surprised that we have been predicted to be, not only among the top 10 hottest markets, but the hottest market for 2017!  Our population grew by 100,000 last year, well over the 65,000 expected.  This is setting up for average price gains of 5.8%

You can read the article in it’s entirety here: Realtor.com National Housing Forecast



Northeast Valley Dog Parks

Finding a great dog park may be of the utmost importance to you, if your current home isn’t blessed with a large backyard, or your canine is friendlier and more social than most.  Here are some options to check out in the Northeast Valley:

  1. park photoHorizon Park – Located at 15444 N. 100th Street in Scottsdale, this two-thirds of an acre dog park is open from sunrise to 10:30 pm each day.  This park has drinking fountains for dogs (and people), a shade structure as well as a dust-control feature for watering, operated by push button.  Visitors are limited to two dogs per visit, and all dogs must be 4 months or older, licensed and current on vaccinations.
  2. Desert Vista Park in Fountain Hills – Located at 11800 Desert Vista in Fountain Hills, this park is open from 6 am to 9 pm daily.  This dog park contains 2 separated areas for small and big dogs within 3 acres.  This dog park has ramadas, doggie dipping pools, water fountains and low-level lighting.  Dogs must wear a visible, current license, and owners must carry a standard 6-foot leash.
  3. Barbara’s Pet Park in New River – This private dog park is located at 46135 N. Black Canyon Highway in New River, and serves Cave Creek, Carefree, Tramonto, Anthem, New River, North Phoenix and Black Canyon City.  Membership costs $100 a year per dog, and permits daily visits to this park with water features, agility courses for both small and large dogs, a pergola with misters, showers, a drinking fountain and fire hydrants.  Open from 7 a.m. to dusk daily (no later than 8:30 p.m.)
  4. Chaparral Park – Located at 5401 N. Hayden in Scottsdale, this large dog park is open from 6 am to 10 pm daily (opening at 5:30 am May 1-Oct 31).  This park features designated areas for active and passive dogs, as well as lighting, water fountains, seating for humans, and play features such as sand and concrete tunnels.  Dogs must be 4 months or older and licensed with current vaccinations.
  5. Vista Del Camino Park – Located at 7800 E. Pierce Street in Scottsdale, this park is open from sunrise to 10:30 pm and features a double-gated entry to the dog park.  This park contains shade trees and benches in its half-acre area.  The dog park is north of the parking area of the park.

Click here to learn about Scottsdale Homes and Neighborhoods