According to the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors (GLVAR), local home sales and prices continued to increase in July 2015, compared to the same time last year.
GLVAR reported the median price of homes sold through its Multiple Listing Service during July was $218,000, up 9.0 percent from $200,000 one year ago. Meanwhile, the median price of local condominiums and townhomes, including high-rise condos, sold in July was $115,000. That was up 8.5 percent from $106,000 one year ago. July's median price for local homes, as well as for condominiums, townhomes and high-rise condos, was within 1 percent of where it was the previous month.
"I like to compare the housing market to a marriage. It's a good thing when it's stable," said 2015 GLVAR President Keith Lynam. "For the most part, that's what we've seen so far this year. Home prices have been increasing, but at slower pace than the past few years. It's also good news that we're selling more homes throughout Southern Nevada this year than we did last year."
According to GLVAR, the total number of existing local homes, condominiums and townhomes sold in July was 3,815, up from 3,314 one year ago. Compared to July 2014, 20.4 percent more homes, but 5.5 percent fewer condos and townhomes, sold this July.
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 July, 7.1 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 11.5 percent one year ago. Another 7.7 percent of July sales were bank-owned, down from 9.1 percent one year ago.
The median price of single-family homes sold as part of a short sale in July was $182,500, up from $165,000 one year ago. The median price of bank-owned homes sold in July was $170,000, up from $161,203 one year ago.
Lynam suggested short sales could still increase if Congress votes to again extend the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007. In 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 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.
The total number of single-family homes listed for sale on GLVAR's Multiple Listing Service in July was 13,616, down 0.7 percent from one year ago. GLVAR tracked a total of 3,465 condos, high-rise condos and townhomes listed for sale on its MLS in July, down 4.4 percent from one year ago.
By the end of July, GLVAR reported 7,636 single-family homes listed without any sort of offer. That's up 5.1 percent from one year ago. For condos and townhomes, the 2,320 properties listed without offers in July represented a 0.4 percent decrease from one year ago.
GLVAR said 27.1 percent of all local properties sold in July were purchased with cash. That's down from 28.4 in June and from 35.6 percent one year ago. It's well short of the February 2013 peak of 59.5 percent, indicating that cash buyers and investors are still a factor in the local housing market but that their influence is waning with each passing month.
These GLVAR statistics include activity through the end of July 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 July was nearly $822 million for homes and more than $90 million for condos, high-rise condos and townhomes. Compared to one year ago, total sales volumes in July were up 29.6 percent for homes, but down 3.1 percent for condos.
In July, 69.4 percent of all existing local homes and 65.2 percent of all existing condos and townhomes sold within 60 days. That compares to one year ago, when 70.4 percent of all existing local homes and 62.5 percent of all existing condos and townhomes sold within 60 days.