Scott Beaudry, Broker – Universal Realty Las Vegas
As I travel around the country and network with my fellow real estate pros, I’m always asked the same question; “How’s the Las Vegas Real Estate market these days?” Well, it’s always interesting, but the most important thing I can say is that it’s stabilizing for the most part. In fact, the median sales price of a single-family home hasn’t changed over the last three months and is currently at $220,000. Compared to 12-months ago, we’re actually up by over 10 percent. We’re also selling more homes so far this year than we did last year, which is good. In October, single-family home sales were up nearly 5 percent from one year ago. Together with the appreciation in home values, that’s great news for those who were under-water and facing the possibility of foreclosure. In fact, overall, we’re seeing less distress in our Las Vegas real estate housing market.
Today, nearly one out of four homeowners have a negative equity on their home. Back in 2012, Las Vegas real estate peaked in terms of negative equity with over 70 percent of our homeowners under water. This number was double the national average. We’ve come a long way since then, but still have some way to travel until we can completely breathe a sigh of relief. And by the looks of it, we’re going to get there soon.
What’s actually selling? When you combine short sales and bank-owned home sales for October, it’s less than 16 percent of our existing home sales in the Las Vegas area. That’s a far cry from just a few years ago when distressed sales made up a mass majority of our market as I mentioned previously.
With that being said, we’re also seeing fewer cash buyers as in past years. In fact, cash sales for October was around 31 percent of existing home sales as compared to one year ago when it was at 35 percent. That’s near a five year low and it’s less than half of what it was back in February of 2013 when cash buyers peaked at almost 60 percent. For those of you who remember, that also meant “Multiple Offers”, where listings were gold and cash was king. Ultimately, investors and “flippers” are still a factor in our housing market more than anywhere else in the nation.
In terms of our overall housing supply, we saw a slight decline in both the number of homes available for sale with and without offers on them, as shown in the graph below with a 5 year comparison. Currently, we have just over a 3-month supply of available homes to sell in the Las Vegas real estate market, when a 6-month supply is more conducive to a normal market supply.
So what’s the big picture? The Las Vegas real estate local home prices are about halfway back to where they were during the peak of our housing boom in 2006 where they peaked at $315,000, and far better than our lowest point when home prices bottomed-out at $118,000 in early 2012.
Yes, the Las Vegas real estate market has had some challenges in the past, but purchasing a home in Las Vegas still remains very affordable as compared the rest of the country and similar metros of the same size. Availability of single family homes with a five year rolling comparison