Real Estate Sales in Val Vista Lakes, Gilbert Arizona - History Repeats Itself?
Part 3 in a 7 part series
By the late 1980's, sales in Val Vista Lakes were brisk, although much of that would be attributed to the builders, with their large advertising budgets... Richmond American, Ryland, McBail, and A&M homes were the major players on the production side, with a large numbers of custom builders putting up homes in the custom areas. Times were good - the community was coming together as Dennis Barney and the rest of the partners had envisioned. But, storm clouds were on the horizon... In late 1986, the seemingly dead "Tax Reform Act" came to life and was passed by Congress, and the air was beginning to leak out of the real estate balloon. By 1989 / 1990, the writing was not only on the wall, it was on the notices being delivered to the Val Vista Lakes Partnership from Western Savings, the major lender to the partners for their development money. Western Savings itself was on the ropes, and soon the Resolution Trust Corporation, a newly minted entity, was knocking on their doors. The news media had fun with the headlines - "Val Vista Lakes Declares Bankruptcy" sounded much worse than the more accurate "Val Vista Lakes Partnership" declaring the same. That aside, the partners' days here were coming to an end.
From the start, the RTC was an awkward dance partner for a community like Val Vista Lakes. They were charged with cleaning up and selling the remaining assets of numerous failed savings & loans, plus a number of banks as well. The local Val Vista Lakes assets were mainly the commercial corners, a few scattered lots, and the crown jewel that became Crystal Shores. This was to be the last-developed custom area, sure to command top dollar, as it faced directly west on the main lake towards the clubhouse. The RTC knew the history, and was even understanding of the larger concerns of residents, but the market was not good for custom lots in the early 90's. Production it would be. Shea Homes ended up with the land, and went on to build a very nice lakefront subdivision... The public loved the homes, and the head sales guy even moved into one of them with his family.
Next - the RTC finishes up