Breaking News
More () »

She moved into her Valley home a week ago. Then she learned there's no guarantee for water come January

500 homes in the Rio Verde Foothills area will lose access to Scottsdale water in less than three months, but homes are still being sold. Why?

RIO VERDE, Ariz. — Rio Verde Foothills is running out of time. 

It's been a year since the City of Scottsdale sent a letter notifying homeowners that they would lose access to the city's water. And there is still no plan in place.

Yet homes are still being built and sold in the desert community north of Scottsdale 

“Once we start getting into February and March with no true water situation available close enough to the community, then people will start running out," resident Leigh Harris said.

RELATED: Hundreds of Valley homes will have their water cut off at years end. So far, their only solution has restrictive caveats

Some homeowners thought they had a way out. They wanted a Domestic Water Improvement District for the area. That would have let them buy water rights from elsewhere in the state and funnel it to their community.

But the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors voted it down, saying there were other alternatives.

RELATED: 'No solution has been found': ACC gives Rio Verde Foothills residents until mid-September to solve water crisis

One of those alternatives was having an existing water supplier build a new water pipe to fill up the water tankers. EPCOR, a water company that serves areas around Arizona, said it could do it ... in three years. 

Meanwhile, new homes are still being built, sold and bought. 

One homeowner 12News talked to said she moved into her home a week ago. She said she didn't know about the upcoming water cutoff until then. She said the listing agent never disclosed it. 

According to a spokesman of the Arizona Department of Real Estate, that disclosure would be required by law. 

Meanwhile, other homeowners are hoping to get their water from another source, even if it's farther away. But that would likely increase the cost of the water they get delivered. 

“The cost of diesel fuel, etc will most likely double our water bill," Harris said.

But as the clock ticks down toward the cutoff date, the homeowners may run out of options, regardless of cost. 

"I mean obviously we're going to have to take whatever we can get," Harris said. 


In our “Boomtown” series, 12News takes a look at the Valley’s explosive growth over the past few decades, the consequences that came with it and a look at what it all means for our future as more than 1.5 million people are expected to move to the valley by 2040.

Before You Leave, Check This Out