In a down market you have to buy smart. Buying smart means buying an in-demand product in a desirable area that is land locked and has the least amount of inventory of that product. The trouble that most people get in is they bought tract homes built by the national home builders. When everything was appreciating in value you tend to forget the principles of real estate and you can throw a dart to anything to make money and get appreciation. In a down or flat market you have to be selective in your purchases. You want to buy something with character that your neighbor down the street doesn't have.
Furthermore, view lots with golf course, city light & mountain views are like waterfront views in other areas. Scottsdale custom homes in areas from Grayhawk south and east into Fountain Hills will always hold their value over other areas. Northeast Scottsdale and Fountain Hills are land locked by the Native American reservation to the east and south and the McDowell Mountains to the north. Everything on the interior of Scottsdale south of the 101 and Pima has been built up over many years of development in Scottsdale. This is why you see the high-rise condos in Old Town moving north. Land is at a premium and developers try to squeeze as many units out of their land as possible. If you want to be close to the airport and Scottsdale's and Phoenix's main attractions you have to be as close to the 101 in Scottsdale as possible. All the new single family homes developments in Scottsdale are North of the loop 101 moving into Carefree & Cave Creek .
Popular new communities including Desert Mountain, Mirabel, The Boulders, Rancho Manana, Whisper Rock, Terravita etc. are in essence 50-60 minutes from the airport making them less desirable to vacation home owners who may bomb down for a week or less. Fountain Hills and Northeast Scottsdale along with their perfect proximity to Scottsdale's amenities have amazing view lots and desirable golf courses surrounding it in close proximity. These courses include Grayhawk, Eagle Mountain, Firerock C.C., Sunridge Canyon and We-Ko-Pa just to name a few. Nothing is guaranteed in real estate but make sure you are aware of your location, product demand and area inventory.