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Tue, Sept. 17

Larger homes coming

Granville graders are finished with the groundwork for the subdivision's newest phase that will feature the community's largest homes.

Joe Contadino, president of Universal Homes (the developer for Granville), said crews have accurately graded all 94 acres of Granville's Phase III, which will feature 339 homes.

Recently, crews finished grading the lots to within one-tenth of a foot of specifications and had to wait for the ground to dry before driving heavy equipment over it, he said.

The lots will be finished in four to six months unless rainfall exceeds expectations.

"We will be coming to market with houses as large as 3,000 square feet with five bedrooms," Contadino said during a recent Prescott Valley Chamber of Commerce event. "We have been getting more and more demand for larger houses that we have never experienced before."

He said the phase will feature three sizes of homes: 1,350 to 1,750 sq. ft., 1,750 to 2,000 sq. ft., and 2,000 to 3,000 sq. ft. The homes will range in price from $140,000 to just below $300,000.

The percentage of Yavapai County homebuyers has decreased as the demand for larger homes has risen, Contadino said. Yavapai County residents initially comprised half of the subdivision's first home buyers, but that has decreased to 40 percent as more homes from Granville's second phase go up for sale.

More buyers from Phoenix, California and Nevada are showing interest in purchasing homes, Contadino said.

"We are seeing a lot of movement from Las Vegas of late," he said. The new homeowners are mostly young couples or retirees.

Contadino said high home demand is forcing Universal Homes to hire more people to build homes at a faster pace.

Approximately 200 work at Granville per day and contribute to the community's $35 million per year payroll, he said.

"There is a shortage of people," Contadino said. "We have jobs that are begging. I hate to admit this, but if you drive by our community, you will see poured floors sitting. We cannot find enough framers to frame those houses."

He said Universal Homes is looking for anyone with construction skills to help build new homes.

Construction at Granville will not stop once Phase III is complete.

Contadino said the Phase IV Master Plan has been approved, but that individual plats will still need to be approved by the town as design plans progress.

"There is going to be a new road installed called Santa Fe Loop Road," he said of an area immediately north of Spouse Drive. "At the bottom of the hill, north of Spouseā€¦ we are putting a new road in there. South of that road down to the high school will be another 1,000 to 1,200 lots. Eight hundred more than we are doing now."

Contadino said another 1,000 homes are planned for the area north of the proposed Santa Fe Loop Road.

The Granville Master Plan also includes plans for an affordable public golf course, he said.

"We are looking to have close to 1,000 homeowners before we start it," Contadino said. He said the subdivision will house about 700 homeowners by the end of the year.

"We are tentatively going to try and bring it (the golf course) on market somewhere around 2007, but we are not committed 100 percent that we are going to do it," Contadino said.

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