Jack LeVine Answers A Reader About Choosing A Real Estate Agent, Historic Neighborhoods, Las Vegas Crime And More

A reader wrote me the following email. HOPEFULLY, I can get some of the VVV readers (especially those in Paradise Palms) to tell her what THEY think in the comments. I wrote what I think following her email.

Hi Jack,
I have been reading your website/blog entries regularly since I stumbled upon it a few weeks ago.  I love the “Vintage Vegas” neighborhoods and hope to buy a home in one before terribly long.  Regrettably, my boss’s wife is a buyer’s agent that I feel obligated to use; however, I know that she doesn’t have much experience in these neighborhoods.  So I was hoping you would be willing to let me know what you think about the area in Paradise Palms that backs up to the Boulevard Mall.  I checked the crime report watch and noticed that there were a couple of burglaries over there, although I realize that living in town will be accompanied with more crime than I would find if I stay out in Henderson.  Specifically I was wondering whether you know anyone who lives or has lived in that tract of Paradise Palms and, if so, whether they were happy with it. 
I also wanted to let you know that I really love your blog and what you are doing to spread enthusiasm for the more interesting parts of town!
Thanks in advance for any help that you can give,

Hi (name withheld),
Thanks for the kind words about my blog. As you can see, I’m a real estate agent who has a deep and life long passion for 50’s and 60’s homes, Las Vegas history, and urban living. Conveniently they’re all in an amazing location that humorously was the “outer suburbs” in the 50’s and 60’s.

I wholeheartedly agree with your decision to buy in Vintage Vegas instead of in the suburbs.

I personally know dozens and dozens of Paradise Palms residents (and even more in the other historic neighborhoods). The few who aren’t happy are also not happy about anything in their life. The rest of them LOVE it, and you couldn’t get them to go to the suburbs if you gave them a house for free.

If you want a neighborhood that’s never had a burglary, there’s this small town in North Dakota that I’ve heard about. It’s extremely safe, but the commute to Las Vegas is going to be a killer.  Actually, if you watch the news, the most amount of burglaries, home invasions, etc happens in summerlin, green valley, anthem and the rest of the suburbs.

I can’t think of a single worse reason to pick a real estate agent than “politically,  I have to because of work”.

Obviously, I can’t help every buyer in Las Vegas, but a great many people think I’m the most trusted and knowledgeable and experienced agent in town when it comes to the classic homes and historic neighborhoods. I have an impeccable 18 year reputation, and would be most happy to allow you to use all that in finding the right home. But if I understand anything, I understand politics. Maybe you’ll be buying one of my listings, and we’ll get to work together that way.

If your boss’s wife is one of the 10,000 leftover realtors from the “boom” 2 years ago, that hasn’t closed a deal since…. All I can say is be very wary. Ask her a lot of questions, make her do her homework, make her stay one step ahead of you on the “learning curve” and then make the right decision for yourself. Don’t let her sway you out to the suburbs by making you second guess yourself. The last thing you need is a suburban part time agent unwittingly giving you false information whether it’s about crime or neighborhoods or construction or anything else.  I’m not the only agent who does what I do, or knows what I know, but don’t let the other agent keep you from finding out what YOU need to know.

The single story I hear most often goes something like ,,,

“If I had known there was anything like Vintage Vegas, I’d NEVER have bought out in the suburbs. My realtor told me there wasn’t anything like this. Of course, she only moved to Las Vegas 2 or 3 or however few years ago herself. She bought in this new home tract and thinks I should live there also. How could she/he have known?

Or… I told the realtor I wanted something unique and  charming, with neighbors that talked to each other. The agent told me there wasn’t anything like that so she took me to green valley. I wish I had heard of you sooner.

Please keep being one of my readers, even I just offended you or your boss’s wife. (I may be totally wrong). You’ll learn a lot and I’ll be pleased that I was still able to be helpful to you.