Las Vegas’s attract of heat climate, no state-income tax and low property taxes—plus an overabundance of world-class eating and leisure—are dependable attracts for prosperous varieties searching for a sunny desert locale to name house.
One of many fastest-growing metro areas within the U.S., Las Vegas has been setting every kind of actual property benchmarks. Whereas town has slowed some because the heady days from late 2020 via 2022, restricted stock has continued to maintain the market transferring. Led by a $21.25 million sale in The Summit Membership in Summerlin, Las Vegas simply noticed its luxurious house market document its finest August in historical past, with probably the most gross sales since June 2022, in response to Las Vegas Realtors.
However that power has made discovering the proper house on the proper worth tougher, so listed here are a handful of different desert spots that provide their very own distinctive charms and life-style benefits, typically with much less eye-popping worth tags.
Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
Located the place the Sea of Cortez meets the Pacific Ocean on the tip of the Baja Peninsula, Cabo San Lucas (inhabitants: 200,000) boasts a mountain-desert-ocean setting distinctive within the Western Hemisphere. Lengthy a popular vacation spot amongst Californians in search of a close-by escape, Cabo has grown to draw house seekers from farther afield, lots of whom are drawn to the relative bargains afforded by Mexican peso-denominated prices.
In response to Juan Diaz Rivera, managing associate of the Company Los Cabos, the world was primarily regarded as a spot the place Individuals got here to purchase second houses, however the pandemic modified this dynamic perpetually.
“With its low population-to-resources ratio, dry local weather and ocean air, Cabo has turn out to be a haven for Individuals and, for the primary time, Mexicans seeking to stay right here full time and commute to work,” stated Diaz Rivera, who notes that townhouses that had been price US$500,000 at the moment are promoting for over a US$1 million, and that in-demand communities like Pedregal don’t have any stock beneath US$2.5 million.
“The power for Individuals to really feel like they will fly out and in—or within the worst case, drive 18 hours north to the border—is now matched by rich Mexicans which have the very best quality of life within the nation and might fly to work just a few days every week,” Diaz Rivera added.
Susanna Powell of Sotheby’s Worldwide Realty stated whereas Cabo San Lucas gives a much less established actual property panorama when in comparison with Las Vegas, the potential for substantial progress in Cabo is increased.
“The approach to life in Los Cabos is really one thing that may’t be replicated. The unparalleled fishing, golf, tradition and meals scene mixed with ocean dwelling places Cabo in a singular place,” Powell stated.
As a result of the highest-priced actual property has predominantly been nestled alongside the beachfront, Powell observes, “the restricted provide of those beachfront properties can’t catch as much as demand, making them coveted investments which might be poised to understand considerably over time.”
Powell additionally has observed regular curiosity in Cabo’s golf scene, citing the vacation spot’s distinctive mix of desert landscapes, ocean vistas and mountainous terrain as a significant draw. “This distinctive fusion of parts units Cabo’s golf programs other than Las Vegas, the place such differentiators are usually not available,” she stated.
The robust market efficiency noticed in 2021 and 2022 has led to a restricted provide of high-priced residences in 2023, supporting present pricing and creating an affordable expectation for additional appreciation, in response to Powell.
“The area has wholesome market circumstances and its tourism trade is remarkably resilient. 5 main new resorts are coming to the area,” she stated. “Funding-wise Cabo is tough to beat.”
With a inhabitants of simply over 5,000, Moab, Utah, is surrounded by two nationwide parks (Arches and Canyonlands), an assortment of well-maintained state and metropolis parks, and an intensive path community.
“For these in search of a best-of-both-worlds state of affairs, Moab is the right mix of a scenic desert panorama and a winter getaway. With a extra temperate summer time local weather than Las Vegas, plus the good thing about a brief, delicate snowy winter, residents can take pleasure in all 4 seasons inside a surprising desert backdrop,” stated Molly Jones of the Company Salt Lake Metropolis.
Well-known for its clear air and darkish skies, Moab is situated in a county the place greater than 95% of the land is public.
“High quality of life for the outdoorsy individual is phenomenal. You may drive in any route in 10 minutes and be in lovely desert solitude with bluebird skies. Many people transfer right here to enhance their psychological or bodily well being,” explains Becky Wells of Summit Sotheby’s Worldwide Realty.
“It’s a spot the place you may get to know the proprietor of the restaurant or artwork gallery and I see folks transferring from larger cities who actually like that. It’s thrilling to them to be acknowledged and greeted moderately than dwelling in a sea of strangers,” she added.
As of September, in response to Jones, the median record worth in Moab had elevated by nearly 4% 12 months over 12 months, and days on market had minimize in half, going from over 150 days to only over 60 days.
Continued growth of high-end motels and retail venues has helped drive the posh market, and the presence of a regional airport with service from Salt Lake Metropolis and Phoenix is making the world extra accessible than ever.
“There are a handful of recent luxurious communities of their first phases of improvement, as properly which gives unparalleled alternative to get it now earlier than all of the facilities are absolutely constructed out and demand and pricing will increase,” Jones stated.
Moab’s luxurious actual property costs are nonetheless fairly reasonably priced, in response to Wells.
“Whenever you evaluate us to different resort cities that provide comparable out of doors existence, you may get much more in your cash right here. You may look to spend between $500 to $800 per sq. foot, moderately than $1,000 to $2,000 per sq. foot in neighboring resort cities.”
“Second houses and funding properties carry out very well as a consequence of our excessive customer depend. Lots of our newer residents in Moab got here right here on trip and had been so moved by the surroundings, they both relocated or purchased a second house right here. It’s actually a particular place and connects folks with nature,” Wells stated.
Palm Springs, California
Nestled in Southern California’s scenic Coachella Valley, the area’s most well-known handle, Palm Springs (inhabitants: 45,000), has firmly positioned itself as a extra handy different to Las Vegas.
“We’re higher than Vegas as a result of in case you ever need to take a daytrip you might be within the mountains, seaside or downtown L.A., Orange County, San Diego in two hours or much less by automotive, “ stated Eric Meeks of Re/Max Desert Properties. “If Leonardo DiCaprio, Gary Oldman and the Kardashians assume the desert is a scorching place to personal, who’s to argue?”
Lured partially by a thriving arts and cultural scene, headlined by the Coachella Competition and the newly-opened Acrisure Enviornment, a complete new technology of millionaires are transferring to the Palm Springs space, in response to Meeks.
“Below Covid, a wholly new demographic moved to the desert searching for free house to journey a motorcycle, suntan, swim, hike and benefit from the open air. I name them techno-urbans, and so they’re nonetheless coming,” he added.
Palm Springs was one in all a handful of U.S. markets to see a triple-digit improve in luxurious gross sales quantity in 2022 in comparison with the pre-pandemic period in 2019, in response to MLS knowledge, and the posh housing market reveals no indicators of easing.
The elevated curiosity has depleted the provision of houses obtainable on the market, pushed up costs, and created a heated setting the place consumers transact in money, forgo customary house inspections and value determinations, and even pay the sellers’ closing prices to substantiate the deal earlier than the next provide comes alongside.
“Luxurious house consumers from numerous markets are looking for the attract of Palm Springs’ gated communities, the place desert opulence seamlessly intertwines with peace and safety,”” added Jeff Kohl, director of architectural properties, Desert Communities, on the Company.
The booming metropolis of Scottsdale (inhabitants: 245,000) combines pure splendor and concrete magnificence amid the enchanting Sonoran Desert. Throw within the near-constant sunshine and delicate winters, and it’s straightforward to grasp why the outdoor-oriented life-style continues to draw transplants from all over the world. A variety of nationally lauded resorts and spas are scattered all through town, which has its personal personal airport and gives shut proximity to Phoenix Sky Harbor’s myriad connections.
“ Scottsdale gives a multifaceted enchantment that surpasses Las Vegas,” stated Scott Grigg with Grigg’s Group of the Altman Brothers. Grigg known as out the greater than 200 golf programs, resorts, climbing trails, nightlife and tax benefits.
Scottsdale’s actual property market is a well-kept secret for these searching for luxurious properties, in response to Grigg.
“What’s shocking to many is the affordability of those houses when in comparison with main metropolitan areas,” he stated. “Within the luxurious market, demand stays strong. … A number of new residential developments and luxurious communities have been within the works, aiming to satisfy the rising demand for upscale housing choices.”
Scottsdale was coined “the West’s Most Western City” by the native chamber of commerce in 1947, and whereas town has utterly modified since then, most of the parts that initially introduced new residents to Scottsdale stay alive and properly, in response to Allison Cahill, designated dealer and luxurious agent for the Company, and president-elect for the Scottsdale Space Affiliation of Realtors.
“There’s something magical concerning the sunsets, … and although Scottsdale is situated within the desert, there are many locations to take pleasure in boating, kayaking and paddle boarding, together with floating down the Salt River and having fun with the scenic Bartlett Lake nestled within the Tonto Nationwide Forest. Each are simply minutes from town middle,” Cahill stated.
In an evaluation of the Scottsdale luxurious market (outlined as properties over $2 million) for 2023, Cahill discovered that the median gross sales worth since January remained unchanged at roughly $2.7 million, with a median record worth of $697 per sq. foot and the typical bought worth of $665 per sq. foot.
“To place our common pricing in perspective, it’s attention-grabbing to look again to knowledge of our final regular market, which was in October of 2019,” she notes. “At the moment, gross sales had been at US$484 common gross sales worth per sq. foot and common record worth at US$511 per sq. foot.”
Whereas saying the numbers present a balanced market, Cahill notes it’s as a result of stock remains to be traditionally low and demand is just under a traditional market.
Sedona has typically been seen as a new-age mecca, providing the chance for renewal by way of countless out of doors adventures. With its beautiful Purple Rock cliffs and awe-inspiring mesas, Sedona feels a lot farther away than the two-hour drive that separates it from city Phoenix.
“Not like the bustling leisure scene of Las Vegas, Sedona supplies a serene setting, making it an excellent location for these looking for tranquility with out compromising on luxurious. The tax charges in Arizona are aggressive, and the actual property market in Sedona has seen constant progress, making it a sound funding with an enormous upside on life-style,” stated Jack Johnson, an agent with Legacy Sedona.
In response to the native MLS, there was a noteworthy improve within the common house sale worth in Sedona; final 12 months, the typical stood at $1.63 million, and in 2023 it has risen to $1.75 million.
“This implies a constructive development relating to the worth of luxurious properties within the space,” stated Tod Christensen of Russ Lyon Sotheby’s Worldwide Realty. “The attract of Sedona, with its pure magnificence, mixed with its proximity to the varied facilities in Phoenix, continues to make it an interesting vacation spot for retirees and second-home consumers.”
Sedona has restricted actual property stock as a result of it’s surrounded on all sides by Nationwide Forest, and so, in the long run, native actual property costs are certain to rise as a consequence of provide and demand, stated Victoria Wylde of Re/Max Sedona.
“For the reason that pandemic, Sedona was placed on the map as a luxurious journey vacation spot and now we have been experiencing an inflow not solely of prosperous vacationers, but in addition prosperous house consumers who’ve a want to personal a major or secondary house right here,” Wylde stated. “
In response to Wylde, the present median recorded gross sales worth for a luxurious house in Sedona (outlined as houses over $1 million) is $1.4 million, with a median worth per sq. foot of $589.
“Consumers will discover extremely distinctive neighborhoods and houses nestled amongst the purple rocks,” Wylde added. “Sedona is legendary for its Southwest fashion structure however there are innovative builders and designers right here that provide all kinds of types to swimsuit nearly anybody’s style.”