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How does a home seller determine today’s value of their original lot premium?

In Scottsdale, most of our existing master-planned golf communities are complete, and the developers are long gone.  As a result, most existing sales are resale homes.  When selling a home, how does a seller determine today’s value of the original lot premium they paid when they bought their home from the developer?
You made an important decision in the selection of your lot and, in fact, you paid a premium since it was a cul-de-sac lot backing to natural area open space with beautiful city light views.  Your intent today is to recoup the monetary value of the lot premium with appreciation. Is this realistic?

View of the 18th hole of Chiracahua golf course, Desert Mountain

View of the 18th hole of Chiracahua golf course, Desert Mountain

A Realtor who has committed to working a specific subdivision or community has probably observed your home being built from the ground up.  They watched the signs for the community go up, the infrastructure go in (curbs, streets, sewer and electric), the sales office and model homes be built and were invited by the developer to the grand opening.
In addition, they have stood at the oversized plat map, walked the vacant lots and helped buyers select their personal home sites.  So it stands to reason that a Realtor specializing in your neighborhood is your first point of contact for an opinion.
But first, verify the premium you paid that was added to the base price of the lot.  It can be found in your original sales paperwork.  If you can’t locate it, ask a Realtor, they may have access to the original lot pricing and understand the pricing increases or changes that occurred as each phase was completed.
Next, what was the basis for the premium paid and is it still a feature of the property?  Of course, the size of the lot matters, but the basis for many premiums have to do with the value of the property’s view.  The benefit of the basis could have potentially changed if subsequent development has obscured views or eliminated privacy.
The benefit of the premium isn’t always evident, so prospective buyers may need to be educated.  For example, a buyer may be more willing to pay a higher price for your home if they understand that the site work on your lot was dramatically higher than that of an identical home at the bottom of the hill with comparable views.  As another example, an interior lot that typically does not command a premium due to views may have been priced at a premium because it had closer access to the clubhouse.
Of course, to compare apples to apples, you will need to look at a comparable market analysis in determining a price.  Working with an experienced real estate agent who knows the ins and outs of your community can help you navigate the resale pricing and can help educate prospective buyers and their agents in order to get the best possible price for your home.
The Matheson Team specializes in the golf communities in North Scottsdale.  Reach out to us if you are looking to sell or buy a home in our area, and be sure to make AZGolfHomes  your “go to” source for Scottsdale real estate and community information.
Don Matheson
Realtor | Founder
The Matheson Team – RE/MAX Fine Properties
21000 N. Pima Rd., #100, Scottsdale, AZ 85255
[email protected]
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