City Improvement Programs

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Tricia Covert
Publisher, Arizona Journal of Real Estate & Business


The status of the home market continues to be at the forefront of conversations for people both inside and outside of the real estate industry. With rising home prices, increased sales and even fix-n-flip transactions, various City Councils are also taking part in the conversation by focusing on ways to improve neighborhoods – as more buyers look to Valley areas to purchase a home. These programs may attract buyers to look at homes and/or areas in a different light – specifically if changes to the home are needed.

According to the National Association of Remodel Investors, remodels have been increasing over the past year mainly due to improved consumer confidence, increased home prices and economic growth.

Some Valley cities are modifying their programs to include both owner-occupied buyers and investors to qualify for the benefits – others are designed for owner-occupied buyers only. Either way, programs are surfacing to complement a home purchase. The City’s interest is to help improve the quality and condition of their neighborhoods while giving buyers an incentive for items such as remodels, restoration and landscaping – these programs are in place to support the housing market, community and the economy.


Examples Of City Programs:

City of Glendale

Save Water, Earn Dollars
The City of Glendale offers residents landscaping rebates for putting in place water conservation practices.

For new homes, installing a low-water-use xeriscape landscape can earn a $200 rebate from the City’s Water Conservation Rebate Program.

Owners of existing homes can earn rebates for removing grass and converting to a desert landscape and low-water plants. Owners must eliminate at least 500 square feet of grass, and the rebate amounts increase from $150 to $750 depending on the size of the landscaped area.


City of Tempe

Residential Improvement Rebate Program
This program provides 100 percent rebate for all building safety fees on improvements completed by existing single family residential properties in the City of Tempe. Projects must be completed and receive a final building inspection approval within one-year from the issuance of a building permit to qualify.

This includes all residential additions, alterations and home improvements normally reviewed and permitted by the Development Services Division.