Vancouver has several neighborhoods that offer disproportionate value. When considering a home that is seemingly undervalued one must be cautious and rely at least in part on the counsel of a qualified local agent and their own good common sense.
The standard price per foot model is unreliable. One must determine why the house is less. generally there is the actual property characteristics, condition, location, age, etc. But external conditions such as neighborhood crime, schools, accessibility to services and infrastructure can also be factors. Once these are evaluated and the property still seems like a deal, then it could be local perception. This is a very intangible thing that is as real at times as other more tactile facts.
Perhaps a neighborhood was once very run down and filled with crime and other undesirable elements, but some improvements began in recent years that has transformed the area into a more moderate neighborhood. Things may even be continuing to improve. Many people will still hold on to past perceptions of the area and thus not offer higher values for otherwise excellent properties. This is once again where a true real estate professional can help. Many agents are guilty of holding on to past perceptions and the best among local pros are well studied and aware of these dynamics that can lead to a potential value opportunity for a buyer.
The opposite can be true as well. A neighborhood with a sterling reputation can be on the downward trend and fetch more for homes based again on local perceptions. It is not a bad idea to test your agent on general knowledge of neighborhoods and communities before writing offers. No agent knows every nook and cranny of a county like Clark with 625 square miles and 500,000 people. Good agents will know a great deal though. The best agents will help their clients see things they might not otherwise notice, either beneficial facts or derogatory items. In either case the buyer will make better decisions and quite possibly find a value property in this crazy tight market.
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