The Las Vegas real estate market has been on a roller coaster ride the past few years and for several of those years, it was a downhill ride as market prices plummeted. But in 2012, the coaster finally hit bottom and once again, started an uphill climb.
The year ended with an 11% increase in closings from the previous month. While closings were down 6.4% overall compared to the previous year, that was offset by a 24% increase in the median sales price of single family residential (SFR) homes. The current median sales price of a SFR is $149,000. In 2011, it was down to $120,000.
In what may come as a surprise to many, despite holding the title of #1 in foreclosures the past few years, bank owned homes, or REO, no longer make up a huge portion of the sales in Las Vegas. Currently, REO accounts for about 10% of the closings. Meanwhile, traditional sales and short sales have been on the rise. With the one year extension of the Mortgage Debt Relief Act, short sales are expected to continue to make up a large portion of sales.
At the end of 2011, the Las Vegas market had 2.7 months of SFR inventory. At the end of this past year, the market had an average of 1.2 months of inventory. To give perspective, 6 months inventory is considered a normal market which means at the moment, Las Vegas is very much a sellers’ market.
2013 may very well see even fewers units closed, but will most likely continue to see an increase in the closed sales prices.