ARTICLES & NEWS

REAL ESTATE CONTRACTS ARTICLES

Community Center

Developer Has Sold the Community Center

By Christopher Combs | March 22, 2020

Question: We purchased our new home in a Chandler subdivision six years ago. At the time of our purchase we received a brochure from the homebuilder stating that one of the benefits of our purchase was the community center which could be used for recreational and social activities. After all of the homes in the subdivision were sold by the developer, the developer deeded the community center to the owner of an adjoining golf course for a golf maintenance building. I always thought that, if the homebuilder’s brochure stated that a certain item such as a brand name microwave would…

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1031 exchange

Restrictions Apply on Tax-Free Deferred Exchange of Homes

By Christopher Combs | March 8, 2020

Question: Ten years ago after the “crash” we bought a rental home in North Phoenix. This rental home has appreciated in value by $200,000 in the last ten years. We now want to sell this North Phoenix home, and to use the $200,000 sale proceeds to build a home in Chandler as our personal residence. We do not want to pay any tax on the $200,000 capital gain on the sale of the North Phoenix home. Can we use a section 1031 tax-free deferred exchange to sell the North Phoenix home and use these $200,000 sale proceeds to build our…

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security deposit

Landlord Must Notify Tenant of Deposit Status Within 14 Business Days After Lease

By Christopher Combs | February 16, 2020

Question: We rented a small furnished home in Phoenix. A burning cigarette severely damaged a sofa which was worth no more than $1,000. When the lease ended, we told the landlord that he could take $1,000 for a new sofa, but that we wanted the rest of our $2,500 security deposit back because the home was otherwise in perfect condition. The landlord said ok. One month later, however, we still have not received any communication from the landlord, who has not responded to any of our texts or emails. How can we get the remaining $1,500 of our security deposit…

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Anthem, AZ

Conversion of Three Rental Homes to Short-Term Rentals

By Christopher Combs | February 9, 2020

Question: We went to a short-term rental seminar last fall at Scottsdale Community College. There were excellent speakers such as Paradise Valley broker Greg Hague, Scottsdale Realtors CEO Rebecca Grossman, Scottsdale Councilwoman Kathy Littlefield, and the Paradise Valley police chief. The reason that we went to this seminar is that we have owned three rental homes in Anthem for more than 20 years, and we were wanting to convert these three rental homes to short-term rentals. Although this seminar was excellent, this seminar primarily discussed the effect of short-term rentals on a community. We are still confused, however, as to…

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golf course

Golf Course Must be Operated by New Owner of Golf Course

By Christopher Combs | January 26, 2020

Question: My husband and I are looking to buy a new home in the Southeast Valley. We looked at a Chandler development, and the CC&Rs said that an 18-hole championship golf course would be built on land not far from our new home. My husband loves to play golf but I have no interest in golf. I would rather buy a new home in a Gilbert community with access to the shops and restaurants in downtown Gilbert. Will the Chandler developer have to build the golf course because of the representations in the CC&Rs? If so, how long does the…

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burglary

Seller and Brokers Must Disclose Burglaries in Neighborhood Homes

By Christopher Combs | January 19, 2020

Question: After we purchased our Sun City home we learned from neighbors that our home had been burglarized at least three times in the preceding eight months, plus there had been several burglaries at other homes in our neighborhood. We are elderly people, and had we known of these burglaries we would not have purchased our home. The money we paid for our home went to the seller, the seller’s listing broker, and the broker that represented us. Shouldn’t someone have told us about these burglaries? If so, how do we calculate our damages? Answer: First, sellers and brokers in…

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short-term rental sites

Short-Term Rental Can Significantly Boost Income

By Christopher Combs | January 12, 2020

Question: We own a rental home in Scottsdale that is not in an HOA community. We have had a good tenant for the last two years who pays us $2,000 a month rent. We have been reading so much recently about short-term rentals in Scottsdale. If we refuse to renew the lease with our good tenant, and we convert this rental home to a short-term rental home, what are the advantages and disadvantages? What if the law is changed by Scottsdale to require minimum 6-month leases? Will we have lost our good tenant for nothing? Answer: The Arizona state legislature…

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Constitutional Amendment Needed to Allow Regulation by Cities and Towns of Short-Term Rentals

By Christopher Combs | January 5, 2020

Question: In a recent column you said that if twelve Sedona homeowners wanted to prohibit Airbnb and VRBO short-term rentals in their small community of twelve homes, the twelve Sedona homeowners could form their own HOA to prohibit short-term rentals. In other words, if a group of homeowners already lives in an HOA community, or forms an HOA, the HOA can prohibit short-term rentals. If you don’t live in an HOA community, however, all of your neighbors can sell their homes to investors, and turn their homes into short-term rentals for up to 365 days a year. Why doesn’t our…

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