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Friday, August 03, 2007

Monsoons Make Arizona Homebuyers Rethink Toscana

Arizona skies just before a monsoon rain stormYes, the monsoons are back!  Over the past week or so, many areas of the Valley have seen some pretty major flooding.  Even the national news channels have shown stories of flooded AZ streets and people being rescued from their cars (remember Arizona's Stupid Motorist Law!).  As I drove through several Mesa neighborhoods earlier this week (trying to avoid the backed up traffic on major streets due to flooding), there were kids in their swimsuits standing near puddles on the corners, waiting for cars to come by and splash them!  Neighborhoods parks (retention basins) were flooded so badly they literally looked like lakes.  Kids were playing in the water on rafts and tubes.  Many teenagers had their quads out, driving along the edge of the 'lake' pulling their friends through the water on tubes.  It looks like fun, but I'm way too old for that!  I wanted to get a picture of some of the older kids in my neighborhood to post here, but my teenager wouldn't let me because she knew some of the kids and said it would 'be way too embarrassing"!

While the monsoon floods are fun for Arizona kids, homeowners don't find flooding quite as entertaining.  Drainage is something homeowners always need to be concerned with, and it's something that should definitely be considered when purchasing real estate.  This week, Phoenix, AZ residents of Toscana found out the hard way just how important drainage really is, even when buying a luxury condo.  A BlogArizona reader sent me the following email with questions about the recent Toscana floods:

"...I have heard from a local AZ friend that the garages in the Toscana development have flooded during the recent rains, causing a total loss for the cars parked there. I was considering a unit in the development.

Do you or your readers know if this is true? And what went wrong? And what needs to be done? And what would be the repercussions to the development.

Arizona skies just before a monsoon rain stormUnfortunately for many, it's true - the underground parking garages at Toscana flooded and destroyed several luxury cars.  Toscana's HOA is refusing to accept any responsibility as of right now and is telling residents to check with their automobile insurance companies for coverage.  The HOA says the flood was an act of God that could not have been prevented.  However, many residents are already threatening lawsuits, stating that the floods could have been prevented with proper drainage.  I'm neither a Toscana resident or a lawyer, but it seems to me the developers (Statesman) not only could have, but should have foreseen monsoon flooding in an underground parking garage.  Monsoons come every year, and proper drainage is a basic requirement for any project or development.  It will take some time, and a bunch of fighting between the residents, the developer and the HOA before it's clear who will pay for the flood damage.  But I personally find it hard to believe that either the developer or the HOA can totally escape liability for this drainage problem.

Here's a local news story about the flooded parking garage at Toscana, and here are some videos about the Toscana flooding.

Visit Shannon Hubbard's Home Page     Written By: Shannon Hubbard

Great American Realty, Inc.

Cell: (480) 695-6672
Email me

Posted by Shannon Hubbard, AZ Realtor & Computer Guru on August 3, 2007 | Permalink


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