From the Communications Chair


It’s been eight years since the infamous economic meltdown that destroyed property values around the country. Here in Desert Ridge, the shock waves were almost cataclysmic — losing the City North shopping center, the foreclosure of High Street, and ensuing additional business closings. Several residential housing projects were scrapped or suspended.

Those days are over…

In 2009, there were 268 home foreclosures in zip codes 85050 and 85054. The average price per home was $257,000. In 2016, there were 16 foreclosures and the average price per home was up over $100,000 since 2009. We are trending up. So much so that in 2016 Taylor Morrison built and commenced active sales for most of their 262 homes community, Taylor Morrison Sanctuary at Desert Ridge and Toll Brothers Villages at Aviano are both slated for completion in 2017-2018. These two projects alone will add over 400 new homeowners to Desert Ridge.

With these two communities that brings the total number of homeowners in Desert Ridge to approximately 6,700. Up from about 5,800 in 2009. Desert Ridge will have over 19,000 homes once it is fully built out. When will that be? We do not know yet, however if home prices rise the predicted 6% in 2017 by, it is a good bet, that developers will have their sights set on building in one of the most desirable areas in the greater Northeast Phoenix area, Desert Ridge.


So what does that mean for us? It means growth. With increased population comes not only an influx of residents but most likely businesses providing products and services as well. Restaurants, entertainment, shops, etc. historically come to areas with a growing population.

It also means a strain on city services such as roads, schools, and the dreaded traffic. All aspects of a community that if not planned to address growing pains could lead to massive problems. But planning is what the Desert Ridge Community Association and their managing partners with FirstService Residential is addressing.

Desert Ridge was incorporated in 1992 and created from property owned by the state via the Arizona State Land Trust. Each parcel within the confines of Desert Ridge has already been designated for the highest and best use and by population density. When a developer wishes to purchase or lease a parcel it then goes to public auction. This enables the state to receive the best possible price for the property. Those funds are turned over to the state land trust for Arizona public schools and education. This also provides the local communities time to review the development’s plans. Your Desert Ridge Community Association Board of Directors is engaging the City of Phoenix to make sure the accompanying services are implemented in concert with any development. We are fortunate to have an active HOA board led by President Doug Dickson and our Community General Manager, Terrance Smith from FirstService Residential, who are in constant contact with local and state officials.

One issue we have today is the ability to differentiate from real news (facts) and fake news (misstatements). Over the past two years I have been involved with the board and I have heard and read on social media inaccurate statements that actually incite responses that are absolutely inappropriate. That’s why your Desert Ridge Community Association, the board, and FirstService, has taken steps to increase community awareness and access to provide the facts and calm any anxiety that evolved from rumors or innuendos. Case in point the new, improved and recently launched Desert Ridge Community Association website:

The new website was designed to increase inbound and outbound communications. You will see updates from our Phoenix Police Community Action Officer, Tim Mitten. If you’ve heard a story and want to verify, come to the website. If you do not see an update, you can contact officer Mitten directly via the website.

Over the next couple of years, it stands to be exciting in and around Desert Ridge. Your board and community general manager are working gargantuan hours to assure we grow efficiently and with as few pain points as possible. They will utilize the Desert Ridge Community Association’s new website to provide real time facts. But communication is a two way street. If you hear something around town about Desert Ridge please contact the DRCA. We promise to give you the facts. Come check us out Let’s stay in touch!

Rob Reichstein

Communications Chair

Desert Ridge Community Association