Price Per Square Foot- Not an Accurate Value When Pricing a Home

Can you accurately value a home when using price per sq ft? Figuring out a suggested listing price entails more than price per square foot. You have to also look at the most recent comparable sales in the neighborhood and compare the similarities and differences between the homes. Until I moved to Arizona I had never heard of determining a value on a home based on the price per sq ft. Back in Illinois where I lived the homes had many unique characteristics and oodles of charm. Old Bungalows, Cape Cods, and Tudors, no 2 homes were alike, I don’t know how could you could ever determine a value using only price per sq ft? My husband is a real estate appraiser and he doesn’t appraise homes by that method so why is it agents and even potential home buyers and sellers throw out the price per sq ft term so loosely?

My reasoning is because there are so many master planned communities in Arizona, homes that were built by the same builder which are very similar. You have probably heard the term cookie cutter. I don’t want to offend anyone with that term, as there are plenty of nice homes that are considered cookie cutter, but there are similarities that make the price per sq ft methods work better when pricing a homes like that, however that is just one part of the equation. Another good example of people pricing a home by square foot is with condos. It’s good to use the square footage as a starting point but make sure you look at all the features of the comparable sold properties. You can see by the chart below it can be very sporadic.


When determining a market value for a home, you must look at a home’s features, such as number of bedrooms, baths, does it have a 2 or 3 car garage, does it have a pool, large or small outdoor space, what sort of updates have been done. When I say updates I don’t mean a  new roof, shampooing the carpet, painting, and a new ac, although all that helps when selling a home but updates that add value. You have heard  the saying kitchen and baths sell! So that is what I mean, updating your kitchen and baths with new cabinets, flooring, tile, fixtures, countertops, etc, that is what sells a home the quickest and for top dollar! Also views are very important, especially here in Fountain Hills where we have some of the best mountain views in the valley. Views and of course the right price, can make a huge difference between a home sitting on the market for one day or 150 days and it could be an identical home with the same sq footage. Views are subjective, one person may want a mountain view where as someone else may want a golf course view. If you aren’t a golfer that golf course view may mean nothing to you but you may pay top dollar for a mountain view. It’s hard to put a price on views and that is when working with a local expert and really digging through the comps can help you come up with a fair market price for your home. So when someone asks me what is the sales price per sq foot of homes in Fountain Hills, I always say it depends.

I’ve been helping home buyers and sellers navigate the real estate market for 11 years. Contact me anytime with any of your questions regarding buying or selling a home in Fountain Hills or the surrounding areas. No Pressure, No Sales Pitch, Just Expert Real Estate Advice!

Homes for sale in Fountain Hills Eagle Mountain Golf Community

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