Las Vegas Real Estate News

Looking at the Las Vegas Real Estate Market

In order to understand how we got to where we are today, we have to look back over the last couple of years. The real estate market enjoyed unprecedented growth across the country, especially in large urban areas. Unfortunately, this growth was built on the shaky foundation of sub prime lending which did collapse or as the media described it, the "real estate bubble burst".

RTTNEWS.COM had an article about a study conducted by Radar Logic Inc., a real estate data company. The New York based company tracked foreclosures across several large cities in the US. From January 2008 to October 2008, during which time foreclosure sales nearly tripled, home prices plummeted. According to the data provided by Radar Logic, Detroit, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Paradise Valley, San Diego and Seattle saw their largest month to month declines in home prices since they began tracking data in January of 2000.

A side effect of the flood of bank owned properties has been the reduction of home prices. As a result, home sales are up 15% from the prior year. In Las Vegas, the latest figures show that bank owned properties represent 75% of all sales, up from roughly 64% in October of 2008 (data provided by Radar Logic).

Despite the slowing of the Las Vegas economy, people are still moving to the valley. An analysis of moving requests conducted by Relocation.com shows that Las Vegas retained its top spot for people looking to make a long distance move in cities with more than 1 million residents. One of the major draws of the Las Vegas real estate market was inexpensive housing

(when compared to nearby markets, like Southern California). With such a huge inventory of homes for sale, prices have dropped below historic market value.

What does all this mean for the market? For one thing, all of this activity is helping to speed up recovery. As more properties are bought up, the discounts being offered by banks and new home builders will start to decline.

"There's a pretty active housing market, it's simply at a lower-priced inventory," says Michael Feder, chief executive of Radar Logic. "And there are now bidding wars taking place over homes in foreclosure." Some buyers have been waiting for prices to stop falling and in some areas of the valley they already have.

Sources:
- rttnews.com
- relocation.com
- Forbes.com/realestate/2009/01/12/cities-ten-realestate-forbeslife-cx_mw_0112realestate.html

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Las Vegas Foreclosures Down, Sales Up

Green Products Showcased at CES

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The theme for this year's Consumer Electronics Show is Green and in more ways than one. CES brings over 100,000 visitors to Las Vegas in one of the largest conventions held in the city. This year green products are being showcased in a speical area for environmentally friendly products. A new twist are products that use less power when in standby or "off" mode. The show is also emphasizing improving recycling and reducing its carbon output. Of course the whole goal is get consumers to spend money on new technology in this downturned economy.

Speaking of technology, last year we saw one of the most technologically advanced housing communities emerge (at least energy usage wise), Sommerset in Henderson. It was the first green community in Henderson and has some of the latest tech gadgets monitoring the home's energy usage.

New Community Profiles

A few new community profiles have been added to the site, including several for Mountain's Edge, the neighborhoods of Alpian Meadows, Ellingwood, San Mateo, Azure Canyon, Rio Vista, Augusta, Cameron, Cascade and Via Valencia and the master planned community of Eldorado Highlands in North Las Vegas. Another condominuim community was also added, Pacific Hills.

The Cosmopolitan beats the Odds

When it comes to beating the odds, the Cosmopolitan is at the top of the list. Developer Ian Bruce Eichner defaulted on its $760 million dollar construction loan and the project went into limbo. The lender Deutsche Bank began foreclosure proceedings in January of last year. Things were looking pretty grim for the future of the project.

However, the Cosmo's luck changed in September when Nevada Property One, LLC (an affiliate of Deutsche Bank) bought the property out of foreclosure for a cool one billion dollars. The original contractor Perini Corp has been retained to complete the project.

The Cosmopolitan is a condo-hotel that will feature 3,000 condo and hotel rooms upon completion. Sources say that the project currently has 1,800 units under contract.

Best of the Blog - 2008

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Yet another year has come and gone. 2008 was a year for firsts, some good, others not so good. This has been a rough year for Las Vegas. People are still vacationing here, although the number of tourists is down from prior years. The construction industry was also hit, with several projects closing down due to lack of funding. Some of those bankrupted projects have been brought back on line, like the Cosmopolitan. Vegas also had the unlucky distinction of being the foreclosure capital of the United States (at least in some news reports). But even that black cloud had a silver lining. Home sales in recent months have exceeded those from the same months in the "boom years". The huge wave of inventory also helped to reduce home prices to a more affordable level.

If you haven't been a regular reader, I've put together a list of the popular posts as determined by reader traffic for the last year:

Lake Las Vegas Links up in the Air

The fate of the Falls golf course at Lake Las Vegas is in the hands of a federal bankruptcy judge. U. S. Bankruptcy Judge Linda Riegle is considering whether to let a Texas company take possession of a golf course. She took a step toward letting Carmel Land & Cattle Co. foreclose on a $15 million loan for the course, but postponed a final ruling until at least next month.

One person in particular is watching the proceedings very carefully. The previous owner of Lake Las Vegas, Ron Boeddeker, could lose millions if the course went into foreclosure because he personally guaranteed the $15 million loan (which is probably worth less than the amount of the loan).

Arguements continue about the viability of the course, whether it will make money and its impact on the community. Lake Las Vegas Joint Venture sought bankruptcy protection earlier this year in July. Despite the filing, home sales continued in the community.

However, one of the main draws of Lake Las Vegas homes are the golf courses. There are roughly 1,600 completed luxury residences, ranging from estate size luxury homes to townhomes and upscale condominiums. Lake Las Vegas also boasts two hotels, various boutique shops, restaurants and a casino.

Are the Chinese Next?

Its no secret that there are huge bargains to be had in the foreclosure markets of the United States. New home builder in Las Vegas are practically giving their inventory away in order to compete with the massive number of foreclosure properties on the market. With over a half a million jobs lost last month, the number of foreclosures may not be going down any time soon.

These numbers haven't been lost on foreign investors. Earlier this year, I had written an article about the influx of Canadian real estate buyers snapping up property here in Las Vegas and other foreclosure heavy markets like Phoenix. I was reading an artice in the Financial Times about a Chinese real estate company with the biggest real estate website in China, SouFun. The company has organized a trip to the US that would focus on California, particularly San Francisco and Los Angeles and possibly Nevada to invest in real estate. So far the company is concentrating on areas that have high levels of Chinese population, hopefully making the area more comfortable for their clients.

Given that criteria, certain parts of the Las Vegas valley could certainly qualify. Home buying for someone living outside of the US is a little more complicated. If you are considering buying a home in the US, I have assisted several international clients buy property here. Call me at 702-493-8033 and I will be happy to assist you. Thanks for reading the Las Vegas Real Estate News Blog.

Richmond American Homes - Three Day Sales Event

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It is that time of year again, when everything goes on sale. Home builders are not that much different from retailers really, they concentrate on moving out statnding inventory to make room for newer models next year. Richmond American just announced it is having a three day sales event on its inventory of Las Vegas homes, from November 14 through the 16th on any quick move-in (already built) home. If you have been looking at a Richmond American home, next weekend will be the time to buy it.

Richmond American is offering up to 3% towards closing costs on new contracts for select quick move-in homes signed during the sales event that will close on or before December 31, 2008. One stipulation is that you utilize HomeAmerican Mortgage Corporation for financing in order to qualify for the closing cost assistance on the base price of the home.

If you don't fall in love with any of the standing inventory and end up buying a home that is yet to be built, Richmond American will throw in up to $10,000 toward home gallery options and upgrades for any home contracts signed during the sales event.

There are of course, certain restrictions and qualifications that apply in order to receive the promotion, which is why it is important to have your own agent representing you. If you would like to take a look at the Richmond American homes for sale, call me at 702-493-8033 or send me an email at info @lvrealty.net. I'll arrange for you to view the standing inventory available and take advantage of their special pricing.

Lennar-a-thon Tent Sales Event

The Lennar tent sale starts tomorrow. They are marking down prices on homes from 15% to 25% as well as offering special financing options. Call me at 702-493-8033 to find out how to receive an additional 1% off the purchase price. The Sale is Saturday, November 8th and Sunday November 9th.

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The Real Haunted Houses of Las Vegas

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Happy Halloween! The Las Vegas market is recovering from housing bubble. Investors and regular home buyers are snapping up property all over the city. Things are far from perfect, unless of course you are a home buyer. The market has experienced a 'perfect storm', driving down prices while raising home inventory. The result are some of the lowest home prices in the several years in the Las Vegas valley with a huge selection of homes and condos for sale.

With so many homes for sale on the market, its hard as a home seller to stand out from the crowd. The latest marketing trend is property auctions. The results have been mixed. The last major auction at the Las Vegas Country Club for some 80 Monterey condos was fairly successful, but there are still leftover condos for sale. Some companies have taken the idea further by having a strictly online auction, cashing in on the bargain atmosphere that auctions generate.

Buyer Beware

But property auctions aren't always the great bargains they are portrayed as. There are additional fees that tacked on to bid price that most first time auction goers were not aware of. These buyer's premiums can range from one to several percent of the winning bid price and can quickly wipe out any savings you might have incurred, especially on higher end properties. Properties will also have minimum bids in place that must be met or the property will not be sold.

Quite often these properties are bank owned as well, which means a longer closing time than a regular home sale. If time is of the essence in closing escrow, then you should avoid bank owned properties entirely.

There are plenty of great deals still out there. The number of Las Vegas homes for sale has been declining and the number of homes sold has surpassed last year's numbers. If you are thinking about buying a home or condo in the Las Vegas valley, feel free to contact me at 702-493-8033 or by email at info @lvrealty.net.

Builder Closeouts in Tuscany

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Over 200,000 off!

The gorgeous Henderson golf course community of Tuscany by Rhodes Homes is having a huge sale. Rhodes Homes has discounted several quick move in homes in three of Tuscany's beautiful neighborhoods. There are a total of 13 quick move-in Tuscany homes for sale available at this time.

There are seven Terrazzo homes available for quick move in. There are five different floor plans ranging from three to five bedrooms, 2,547 to 4,139 square feet. They also include several thousand dollars of free upgrades on a per home basis and two of the properties include casitas.

If you are looking for something on the course, there are two La Luna homes with golf course lots. They are the same floor plan offering five bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms and a three car garage (3,431 sf). They are priced in the 400's with no options.

There is one other golf course lot in Avellino if you want a larger home. Avellino has three other homes for sale with thousands dollars of options. Call 702-493-8033 for floor plan specifics or to schedule a tour of the homes for sale.

About Tuscany

Tuscany is one of the premier master planned golf communities in Henderson and is located just a few minutes drive from Lake Las Vegas. Tuscany golf club opened in July of 2005 and is open to the public. However, residents will play t discounted rates. The club's centerpiece will be the Olde World Tuscan Village.  It will feature a pub and fine dining restaurant,  banquet and meeting facilities and of course, a golf retail store.  The Tuscany clubhouse features a swimming and separate lap pool, cabanas, tennis, fitness center and lounge.

If you would like to receive listings of Tuscany homes, please feel free to contact me by email or call me on my cell phone at 702-493-8033.

Monterey Auction

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The Las Vegas property auctions keep on coming! If you are interested in attending property auctions in the Las Vegas valley, you can subscribe to our blog or call 702-493-8033. Las Vegas real estate auctions have been getting a lot of press lately, the Lake Las Vegas auction held earlier this month was even mentioned in the LA Times. This latest entry will auction off 80 condos at the Monterey condominium community located inside the Las Vegas Country Club.

Bargains at Monterey

The auction will take place on Sunday, October 26th at Palace Station. Registration starts at 10 am. There are 80 plus condominiums that are being auctioned off. The properties up for auction may be viewed prior to the event. Auction attendees must bring a cashier's check and other items  to the event in order to bid on properties. Condos may be purchased for as little as 3% down and certain rules and restrictions apply.

For listings of Monterey condos or information about the condo auction including bidding requirements and rules as well as scheduling a tour of the condos up for auction, call me at 702-493-8033.