Housing market has rising prices, short supply

A report released by Las Vegas Realtors shows local home prices rising while the housing supply keeps shrinking, putting the local housing market in the unusual position of looking a lot like the rest of the country.

LVR reported that the median price of existing single-family homes sold in Southern Nevada through its Multiple Listing Service during October was $340,200. That is up 10.8 percent from $307,000 during the same month last year and marks another all-time price record. Local condos and town homes sold for a median price of $186,500 in October. That’s up 8.9 percent from $171,250 in October 2019.

“COVID-19 appears to have extended the typical summer buying period by several months,” said LVR President Tom Blanchard, a longtime local Realtor. “The continued demand in our housing market is still not being met and is putting upward pressure on home values. Although we see increased permits by local homebuilders, they are still not meeting the demand that is out there.”

Blanchard added that Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak’s order allowing open houses to resume throughout the state starting Oct. 1 is also helping the local housing market and may prompt more homeowners to put their properties on the market.

LVR reported that 3,961 existing local homes, condos and town homes were sold during October. Compared with the same time last year, October sales were up 11.2 percent for homes and up 9.5 percent for condos and town homes.

For years, Southern Nevada made national news for riding a real estate roller coaster, with pre-recession home prices soaring to record highs and then falling faster than almost anywhere else in the U.S. during the recession. But Blanchard said the local housing market is now “more in line with the rest of the country,” with strong demand and a dwindling supply driving home price peaks.

He said the number of local homes available for sale remains well below the six-month supply considered to be a balanced market. He said the sales pace in October equates to roughly a 1.5-month supply of homes available for sale, creating a local housing shortage. The shortage is similar but slightly less severe nationwide, with the National Association of Realtors reporting a 2.7-month housing supply through September.

By the end of October, LVR reported 4,501 single-family homes listed for sale without any sort of offer. That is down 37.6 percent from one year ago. For condos and town homes, the 1,428 properties listed without offers in October represent a 21 percent drop from one year ago.

Meanwhile, LVR reported that 19.2 percent of all local properties sold in October were purchased with cash. That compares with 21.7 percent one year ago. That’s well below the February 2013 peak of 59.5 percent, suggesting that cash buyers and investors have been less active in the local housing market. The figure is similar to the most recent national numbers from NAR, which reported that cash sales accounted for 18 percent of all transactions nationwide.

Despite the coronavirus crisis, the number of distressed sales remains near historically low levels. LVR reported that short sales and foreclosures combined accounted for 0.9 percent of all existing local property sales in October. That compares with 2.4 percent of all sales one year ago, 3 percent two years ago and 5.2 percent three years ago.

Again, that’s in line with the most recent national numbers from NAR, which found that short sales and foreclosures represented fewer than 1 percent of all sales nationwide in its most recent report.

Blanchard expects distressed sales to remain low as federal moratoriums remain in place to prevent most evictions and certain foreclosures.

The LVR statistics include activity through the end of October. LVR distributes statistics each month based on data collected through its MLS, which does not necessarily account for newly constructed homes sold by local builders or homes for sale by owners.

Other highlights include the following:

■ The total value of local real estate transactions tracked through the MLS during October was more than $1.3 billion for homes and nearly $149 million for condos, high-rise condos and town homes. Compared with a year ago, total sales values in October were up 29.6 percent for homes and up 16.9 percent for condos and town homes.

■ Homes are selling faster than they were last year at this time. In October, 85.4 percent of all existing local homes and 81.4 percent of all existing local condos and town homes sold within 60 days. A year ago, 74.4 percent of all existing local homes and 69.8 percent of all existing local condos and town homes sold within 60 days.

Las Vegas Realtors was founded in 1947 and provides its more than 15,000 local members with education, training and political representation. The local representative of the National Association of Realtors, LVR is the largest professional organization in Southern Nevada. Each member receives the highest level of professional training and must abide by a strict code of ethics. For more information, visit

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