LAS VEGAS – Local home prices remained remarkably stable in September, according to a report released Thursday by the Greater Las Vegas Association of REALTORS (GLVAR).
GLVAR President Keith Lynam, a longtime local REALTOR, said the 2015 trend toward increasingly stable home prices and gradually increasing home sales is a healthy one for homeowners.
“Our local housing statistics have become pretty predictable this year and more stable than they’ve been in several years,” Lynam said. “And stable and predictable are good things for homeowners and for the local housing market. It’s certainly preferable to the real estate roller coaster ride we experienced over the past decade.”
GLVAR reported the median price of homes sold through its Multiple Listing Service during September was $220,000, the same as it was in July and August, but up 8.6 percent from $202,500 one year ago. Meanwhile, the median price of local condominiums and townhomes, including high-rise condos, sold in September was $119,000. That was up 14.1 percent from $104,250 one year ago.
According to GLVAR, the total number of existing local homes, condominiums and townhomes sold in September was 3,285, up from 2,982 one year ago. Compared to September 2014, 14.3 percent more homes, but 6.3 percent fewer condos and townhomes, sold this September. So far in 2015, Lynam said local home sales remain ahead of last year’s sales pace.
For more than two years, GLVAR has been reporting fewer distressed sales and more traditional home sales, where lenders are not controlling the transaction. In September, 6.8 percent of all local sales were short sales – which occur when lenders allow borrowers to sell a home for less than what they owe on the mortgage. That’s down from 10.4 percent one year ago. Another 7.1 percent of September sales were bank-owned, down from 8.8 percent one year ago.
The median price of single-family homes sold as part of a short sale in September was $180,000, up from $165,000 one year ago. The median price of bank-owned homes sold in September was $175,000, up from $169,222 one year ago.
Lynam said short sales could still increase if Congress votes to again extend the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007. Last December, Congress voted to retroactively extend the tax break it had allowed to expire at the end of 2013 to help distressed homeowners who sold properties in 2014. Unless Congress extends this act again through 2015, any amount of money a bank writes off in agreeing to sell a home as part of a short sale this year may become taxable when sellers file their income taxes.
Like local housing prices, GLVAR statistics also pointed to a steady housing supply. The total number of single-family homes listed for sale on GLVAR’s Multiple Listing Service in September was 13,389, down 3.4 percent from one year ago. GLVAR tracked a total of 3,438 condos, high-rise condos and townhomes listed for sale on its MLS in September, down 2.4 percent from one year ago.
By the end of September, GLVAR reported 8,134 single-family homes listed without any sort of offer. That’s down 0.8 percent from one year ago. For condos and townhomes, the 2,311 properties listed without offers in September represented a 4.3 percent decrease from one year ago.
GLVAR said 26.8 percent of all local properties sold in September were purchased with cash. That’s down from 34.3 percent one year ago and less than half of the February 2013 peak of 59.5 percent, indicating that cash buyers and investors are still more active in Southern Nevada than in most other parts of the country, but that their influence is waning.
These GLVAR statistics include activity through the end of September 2015. 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 September was nearly $700 million for homes and nearly $82 million for condos, high-rise condos and townhomes. Compared to one year ago, total sales volumes in September were up 22.9 percent for homes, but down 6.3 percent for condos and townhomes.
· In September, 68.4 percent of all existing local homes and 63.8 percent of all existing condos and townhomes sold within 60 days. That compares to one year ago, when 66.4 percent of all existing local homes and 60.5 percent of all existing condos and townhomes sold within 60 days.
About the GLVAR
GLVAR was founded in 1947 and provides its more than 12,500 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.