What makes people pay so dearly for a view?  Is it status, privacy and solitude, personal enjoyment and appreciation, to hide from the public, to be seen by the public?  Whatever the reasoning, a buyer in North Scottsdale knows a view commands a premium price.  But how is that premium determined?

After square footage and lot size, the view is the most significant driver of real estate value.  If the home or land you are purchasing is to be financed, it’s up to the appraiser to evaluate the property’s physical characteristics and the view, and assign a value.

Views in Scottsdale that command a premium are:

  • City lights
  • Mountain views
  • Golf course
  • Boulder or granite out-cropping
  • Arroyos
  • Desert or natural area open space
  • Waterfront

The orientation of the home on the building envelope significantly influences value, and developers typically try to take advantage of views when laying out the home’s footprint on the lot. The City of Scottsdale has voted in an ordinance that demands developers to set aside a portion of a subdivision for providing open space for desert terrain and vegetation to remain in its natural state.  Backing to natural area open space is an amenity many North Scottsdale buyers look for when buying a home.

View orientation also brings into consideration the direction in which the home faces.  Sunset views are highly valued for many Scottsdale home buyers, especially because our sunsets are more colorful and spectacular in the Arizona desert, and we are able to enjoy them most evenings of the year.

In North Scottsdale, city lights are the trump card, with golf course and mountain views following closely behind.  Someone once explained to me that city lights views are the most valuable because the view can be enjoyed day and night (views of the city during the day, and the city lights at night.)  All other views go away when it’s dark.

City lights AND golf course and/or mountain views are the best possible scenario – throw in a sunset orientation and it doesn’t get much better than that.

One approach to determine the value of a view is to compare the sale price of a house on a lot without a view with the sale price of an identical house with unobstructed views and arrive at a view premium.

There is no hard and fast rule for determining the value of a view and many cash buyers are willing to pay the perceived value to them, even if it’s in disagreement with an appraiser’s perception.

A dollar value for a human’s desire for privacy, status or desired lifestyle can be quite elusive and is often held only in the eye of the beholder.

If you are moving to Scottsdale, contact us to learn more about the area.  The Matheson Team at ScottsdaleRealEstate is your “go to” source for real estate. Be sure to search homes for sale or take a peak at the active listings in Scottsdale.

Don Matheson
Realtor | Founder
The Matheson Team – RE/MAX Fine Properties
21000 N. Pima Rd., #100, Scottsdale, AZ 85255