Friday, January 8, 2021 / by Ken Couture
Las Vegas Realtors are reporting that local home prices remained in record territory as 2020 came to a close, with rising home sales and a shrinking housing supply.
The median price of existing single-family homes sold in Southern Nevada through its Multiple Listing Service (MLS) during December was $345,000. That matches the all-time record for existing local home prices set in November. It's also up 10.2% from a median price of $312,990 in December of 2019.
Local condos and townhomes sold for a median price of $186,000 in December. While that's down from November, it's still up 4.5% from $178,000 in December of 2020.
"I think we surprised a lot of people with how the local housing market not only held up, but set records, during an otherwise rough year for our community and our local economy," said 2021 LVR President Aldo Martinez. "I don't see much changing in the early part of 2021. Demand for housing remains high. Our housing supply and mortgage interest rates are still very low. As long as these trends continue, it's a good bet that local home prices will keep rising."
Martinez said the number of local homes available for sale remains well below the six-month supply considered to be a balanced market. In fact, he said the sales pace in December equates to just over a one-month supply of homes available for sale.
By the end of December, LVR reported 3,240 single-family homes listed for sale without any sort of offer. That's down 41.5% from one year ago. For condos and townhomes, the 1,153 properties listed without offers in December represent a 25.9% drop from one year ago.
LVR reported a total of 4,097 existing local homes, condos and townhomes were sold during December. Compared to the same time last year, December sales were up 26.7% for homes and up 30.9% for condos and townhomes.
According to LVR, the total number of existing local homes, condos, townhomes and other residential properties sold in Southern Nevada during 2020 was 41,617. That's up from 41,269 total sales in 2019. By comparison, LVR reported 42,876 total sales in 2018 and 45,388 in 2017.
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 Great Recession. During this ongoing pandemic, the local housing market has been more in line with national trends, with a tight supply and historically low mortgage interest rates contributing to rising sales and record prices.
During December, LVR reported that 20.2% of all local property sales were purchased with cash. That compares to 21.8% one year ago. That's well below the February 2013 peak of 59.5%, suggesting that cash buyers and investors have been less active in the local housing market.
Despite the coronavirus crisis and economic downturn, the number of so-called distressed sales remains near historically low levels. LVR reported that short sales and foreclosures combined accounted for just 0.9% of all existing local property sales in December. That compares to 1.8% of all sales one year ago, 2.9% two years ago and 3.6% three years ago.
These LVR statistics include activity through the end of December 2020. 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.
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