I have buyers buying their first home tomorrow, sight unseen. Oh sure, we’ve done a couple of Facetime “visits”, but tomorrow their walkthrough will be the first time they’ve physically set foot in the house. There’s really nothing more stressful than closing day for a sight unseen buyer, I don’t think.
One of the things that they had to work through and understand was the difference in real estate prices between the various areas of the New River Valley. I’ve written about it plenty of times before, and we detail it in our market reports, but it can sometimes be hard to wrap your head around. Case in point:
Consider these two houses, both of which sold in the last few months. Both were built in the last 12 years. Both had three bedrooms and two and a half baths. One had 2020 square feet, the other had 2021 square feet. They were, for all intents and purposes, the same home. But they sold for two very different prices.The only real difference here is the zip code. The one on Palmer, in Blacksburg, went under contract for $430,500 after just three days on the market. The one in Christiansburg went under contract in ten days, for $324,900.
Both of these communities are great places to live. There are great places to live all throughout the New River Valley. But there’s a lot more that goes into determining value than just beds, baths, and square footage. To some, value is being in Blacksburg. To others, value is being further out, with elbow room.
There’s no right or wrong answer, but it can be difficult to look at a map and see ‘lil ‘ole New River Valley in Southwest VA and learn that average and median prices are so high, and that prices can vary so wildly. In the end, there’s a lot more that goes into the idea of value than just price, it’s price vs. value. That’s what these folks had to contend with, but coming from San Francisco the idea of being in rural Virginia and able to walk to work was appealing.
Fingers crossed they like their new house tomorrow. Welcome to Blacksburg, Elinor and Shaddi!