LAS VEGAS – Statistics released by the Greater Las Vegas Association of REALTORS (GLVAR) show the median price of homes sold last month in Southern Nevada held steady at $200,000, while fewer buyers are paying cash for local homes.
GLVAR reported the median price of single-family homes sold through its Multiple Listing Service during August was $200,000, up 9.9 percent from one year ago. That matched the median price in July, which marked the first time since August of 2008 that GLVAR reported local single-family home prices hitting the $200,000 mark.
Meanwhile, the median price of condominiums and townhomes sold in August was $105,000, down 0.9 percent from $106,000 in July, but up 14.8 percent from one year ago.
“After appreciating at a fairly rapid rate for more than two years, local home prices have been leveling off lately,” said GLVAR President Heidi Kasama, a longtime local REALTOR. “It was only a matter of time before we stopped seeing home prices rise by double-digit percentages.”
Kasama said GLVAR’s median local home price is still well below the June 2006 peak of $315,000. Single-family home prices bottomed out at a median of $118,000 in January 2012 before rising almost every month since then.
As in past months, GLVAR reported fewer single-family homes were sold in August than during July. Kasama said local home sales so far in 2014 are running about 13 percent behind last year’s pace. At the current pace, she said Southern Nevada has about a three-month supply of available properties. That’s about half of the six-month housing supply REALTORS consider to be a balanced market.
Since 2013, GLVAR has reported fewer distressed sales and more traditional home sales, where lenders are not controlling the transaction. That trend continued in August, when GLVAR reported that 11.5 percent of all sales were short sales – which occur when lenders allow borrowers to sell a home for less than what they owe on the mortgage. That matched the percentage of short sales in July. Another 8.9 percent of all August sales were bank-owned properties, down from 9.1 percent in July.
Throughout 2014, Kasama has said short sales have been declining due in part to uncertainty about whether Congress will vote this year to extend the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007 that expired Dec. 31, 2013. If Congress doesn’t extend this law and make it retroactive to Jan. 1, it can create a significant tax hit for anyone who completed a short sale in 2014. She said REALTORS are still pushing Congress to extend this act for at least another year. Unless Congress extends this act in the coming months, any amount of money a bank writes off in agreeing to sell a home as part of a short sale starting in 2014 may become taxable when sellers file their income taxes.
The total number of single-family homes listed for sale on GLVAR’s Multiple Listing Service in August was 13,752, up 0.3 percent from 13,717 in July, but down 5.0 percent from one year ago. GLVAR reported a total of 3,623 condos and townhomes listed for sale on its MLS in August, down just one unit from the 3,624 such properties listed in July, but up 2.6 percent from one year ago.
By the end of August, GLVAR reported 7,788 single-family homes listed without any sort of offer. That’s up 7.2 percent from 7,266 such homes listed in July, and a 38.8 percent jump from one year ago. For condos and townhomes, the 2,399 properties listed without offers in August represented a 3.0 percent increase from 2,330 such properties listed in July and a 35.2 percent increase from one year ago.
According to GLVAR, the total number of existing local homes, condominiums and townhomes sold in August was 3,120, down from 3,314 in July and down from 3,539 one year ago.
GLVAR said 32.1 percent of all existing local homes sold in August were purchased with cash. That’s down from 35.6 percent in July, near a five-year low and well short of the February 2013 peak of 59.5 percent, suggesting that fewer investors are buying homes in Southern Nevada.
The median price of bank-owned homes sold in August was $161,550, up from $161,203 in July. The median price of homes sold as part of a short sale in August was $170,000, up from $165,000 July.
These GLVAR statistics include activity through the end of August 2014. GLVAR distributes such statistics each month based on data collected through its MLS, which does not necessarily account for newly constructed homes sold by local builders or for sale by owners. Other highlights include:
- The monthly value of local real estate transactions tracked through the MLS during August increased by 1.3 percent for homes to nearly $643 million. For condos and townhomes, the total value of all August sales was nearly $75 million, down 19.4 percent from July. Compared to one year ago, total sales volumes in August were down 1.1 percent for homes, but up 18.1 percent for condos and townhomes.
- In August, 68.3 percent of all existing local homes and 63.1 percent of all existing condos and townhomes sold within 60 days. That compares to July, when 70.4 percent of all existing local homes and 62.5 percent of all existing condos and townhomes sold within 60 days.
About the GLVAR
GLVAR was founded in 1947 and provides its more than 11,000 local members with education, training and political representation. The local representative of the National Association of REALTORS®, GLVAR is the largest professional organization in Southern Nevada. Each GLVAR member receives the highest level of professional training and must abide by a strict code of ethics. For more information, visit www.HomeLasVegas.com or www.lasvegasrealtor.com.