Different areas within a community can have different price points.
I would look at the specific neighborhood within the community that you are interested in to get an estimate of value. Some homes in La Reserve have no views, and others have great views.
Upgrades and views sell homes and increase value.
However, in this market, I would write an offer and see if the owner takes it as there are considerable variables and it can depend on the individual seller's situation too.
As David mentioned the price/sq ft is never a rigid number to go by, but if the window of inspection is narrow enough it certainly does help.
I have some knowledge of the La Reserve community and prices tend to average a bit higher than $175/sq ft and there are a few homes currently on the market (for single-family homes).
If you would like more detailed information on La Reserve homes/townhomes/condos, please feel free to shoot me an email and I'll provide it for you (no obligation of course).
If you have a couple of properties you are interested in, and are considering an offer, it would be wiser to consult with an appraiser to help determine an offer price. Since a state licensed appraiser does not have a vested interest in the outcome (commissions), you would get an unbiased opinion. You would not necessarily need to order an appraisal, a consulting assignment would be more appropriate and would fall in line more with the appraised value, than an agents estimate, when your lender orders the appraisal.
You certainly picked an interesting area to consider buying in. Price per sq. ft. is one of the considerations as is the direction your yard faces. in many cases a north or east facing back yard will add to the value, views are another factor and of course the condition of the property. How is the curb appeal, does it require attention? First impression when you enter the home, appliances and other factors. Have you has report on recent sales of similar properties in the immediate area.These are all areas that your Realtor can help you with. I suggest it is important to work with a Realtor whose service can be very valuable.
As you probably know, La Reserve is a gated community nestled up against the Pusch Ridge of the Catalina Mountain range. Ironically, my office is right across the street.
There are several communities (various builders) within La Reserve, and various price ranges for each community. Homes in these communities tend to sell, on average, 5-6% off list price.
A professional REALTOR would be able to provide you with all the comparable data for you to make a well-informed decision. Please feel free to contact me if you haven't already committed to another REATOR. I'd be happy to help.
Tom Lois, Associate Broker