Tips for dealing with Arizona Summer Heat

Desert view of Phoenix with Thermometer and words

5 Tips for Dealing with Arizona Summer Heat

There is no doubt; that the summers are hot here in sunny Phoenix, Arizona. As a real estate agent working with clients all over the country, I often get asked how do you handle the hot summers in Arizona? In fact, this is a real question from a buyer from Seattle: “We’ve been watching the temps in Phoenix lately, and they seem intimidating! I’ve heard that Prescott is cooler than Phoenix.  I can’t seem to find any active adult communities there. Your thoughts?” These clients are coming out in July to explore our area’s retirement communities. Below are 5 tips for dealing with Arizona Summer heat.

1. Have a second home

Some homeowners who live in a Phoenix retirement community are lucky enough to have a second home. One in beautiful Phoenix during the good weather times (Nov- May) and another to whisk them away to cooler temperatures during the sweltering summer months (July- Sept).  But, many don’t have two homes; they have one full-time home here in one of the many Valley of the Sun’s active adult retirement communities. Not to worry, there are other ways to beat or live with the heat.

2. Leave town

How do they handle the heat, well, many full-time residents get out of Dodge per se? Ok, we’re not in Texas, so they get out of town for the hottest months. For example, my parents who live in Sun City West travel. They visit family, my sister, and brother who live in WA state, or visit cooler states, travel abroad, and cruise. You just think of our hot summer as winter or spring in Seattle when it’s wet and cold. Or if you are from Chicago or the East coast, it replaces snow and ice storms in the winter. You do things inside.

3. Stay-vacation

Another fun thing to take your mind off the heat is a stay vacation. What is that, you ask? It’s a local vacation right here in the greater Phoenix area at a resort hotel for residents who live in Arizona. If you are local you get big discounts. There are beautiful 4, and 5-star resorts in Scottsdale and other parts of the valley priced super cheap for the summer months. Many rooms are half price compared to the good weather winter months. What’s more, you don’t have far to drive to be on vacation. You’re not spending a day traveling to get to your destination. My favorite place for a stay vacation in the West Valley is The Wigwam Resort.

4. Head for the High Country

Another option is to rent a home in a cooler location in Arizona for the summer months. Getting to the mountains requires a few hours of travel to a higher elevation and of course thinking ahead to rent your spot. You can expect temperatures to be anywhere from 10 to 15 degrees cooler than in the Phoenix area. Favorite places to go are Prescott, Pinetop, Flagstaff, Show Low, and Sedona.

5. Change your mindset

So if you are braving the AZ heat and not leaving, the good news is all the Phoenix retirement community recreation centers are air-conditioned, and there are pools to cool off in. The larger communities have walking or jogging tracks inside. Your house is air-conditioned, as well as your car and all the stores -so it’s not so bad. Your blood does thin over a few years, and you do get used to the hot summers. Just remember to do things outside early in the AM or after the sun goes down. This is especially true for walking your dog. Dealing with the heat is all about changing your mindset. And, yes there is no snow to shovel.

Oasis Resort Style Pool PebbleCreeek
Stay home and cool off in a pool. This is the Oasis Resort Style Pool at PebbleCreek

My mom also commented that you go from winter with ice and snow to a humid summer in some states back East. She also brought up that there aren’t that many bugs here. The norm if you retire and live in Florida and want to enjoy your backyard is to have a screened-in patio to keep the bugs and other things like snakes and gators out. Not the case here in Phoenix; there are very few bugs. Highly recommended that you have a pest control company out every few months to take care of ants and any other insects inside and outside your home. Regular pest maintenance is also a good idea for keeping termites away too.

red rocks of Sedona
Beautiful Sedona

So to get back to the original question, no, there aren’t retirement communities in Prescott anything like what you can get in the West Valley of Phoenix. And, by that, I am referring to the size and the number of amenities Phoenix retirement communities offer.  I believe there might be some mobile home retirement communities in some of the surrounding areas. As we discussed above, an option is to rent a place for a few months in Prescott, Sedona, or maybe some other cooler state during the hot time. Or perhaps, after some thought, you decide to stay home and enjoy the snowbirds being gone. I love that there is little to no wait for restaurants, doctor’s appointments, or just about anything you want to do.

In conclusion, you have many options to deal with the Arizona desert heat. If you visit in July, it will be hot and humid. Bring your hat, and sunscreen, and always have a white long-sleeved shirt for covering up from the sun.  Some restaurants and hotels can be too cold with the air conditioning so bring that shirt along there too. Most importantly, drink plenty of water and remember, we have to get through the summer heat to get to the spectacular weather enjoyed by many snowbirds.

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