GLVAR reports near-record number of homes sold in August

By: Tiffany James, GLVAR Communications Director, 9/8/2011, GLVAR Press Release

Statistics released today by the Greater Las Vegas Association of REALTORS® (GLVAR) show sales of local homes, condominiums and townhomes jumped significantly in August, approaching an all-time record for existing home sales in a single month.

According to GLVAR, the total number of local homes, condominiums and townhomes sold in August was 4,693. That’s up from 4,037 total sales in July and up from 3,638 total sales one year ago. Within that total, single-family home sales during August increased by 31.5 percent, while sales of condos and townhomes increased by 20.5 percent when compared to August of 2010.

Total housing sales in August were just nine sales short of the record set in June of 2009, when GLVAR reported 4,702 total sales. The 987 local condos and townhomes sold in August are a record for a single month. And the 3,706 single-family homes sold last month trail only June (3,785) and July (3,738) of 2009 among the best single-family home sales months on record. “August was a super active month for sales. In terms of existing home sales here in Southern Nevada, it was our second best month ever,” said GLVAR President Paul Bell, a longtime local REALTOR®. “And I think those sales numbers could have been several hundred units higher had banks approved more short sales.” As GLVAR leaders have been saying for months, Bell attributed the sales surge to continued strong demand for homes in the Las Vegas area, especially among investors, and to historically low mortgage interest rates and historically low housing prices. He said the calendar may have also contributed, since August has 31 days and no major holidays to distract home buyers. While sales numbers are surging, Bell said local home prices continue to be driven down by investors, mostly cash buyers, purchasing low-priced properties at bargain prices. In recent months, he said roughly one-third of all local home sales have been for less than $100,000. According to GLVAR, the median price of a single-family home sold in August was $120,000, down 1.6 percent from $122,000 in July and down 14.3 percent from $140,000 one year ago.

The median price of local condominiums and townhomes sold in August was $56,000, down 5.1 percent from $59,000 in July and down 16.4 percent from $67,000 one year ago.

GLVAR reported that the median price of bank-owned single-family homes sold in August was $104,100. The median price of single-family homes sold as part of a short sale in August was $128,250. That’s down from July, when the median price of bank-owned homes was $107,000 and the median price of all short sales was $132,000.

In August, GLVAR reported that 51.2 percent of all existing homes sold in Southern Nevada were purchased with cash. That’s down slightly from 52.0 percent in July. Meanwhile, 21.7 percent of all existing homes sold in Southern Nevada during August were short sales, which occur when a bank agrees to sell a home for less than what the borrower owes on the mortgage. That’s up from 20.2 percent in July, but down from a peak of 34 percent set in June 2010.

Bank-owned homes accounted for 50.2 percent of all existing home sales in August, the same percentage as July.

GLVAR reported that the total number of homes listed for sale on its MLS decreased slightly from July to August, with a total of 22,400 single-family homes listed for sale at the end of August. That’s down 0.2 percent from 22,442 homes listed for sale at the end of July and down 1.0 percent from one year ago. GLVAR reported a total of 4,862 condos and townhomes listed for sale on its MLS at the end of August. That’s down 4.6 percent from 5,096 in July and down 19.0 percent from one year ago.

The number of available properties listed for sale without any sort of pending or contingent offer also decreased from the previous year. By the end of August, GLVAR reported 11,190 single-family homes listed without any sort of offer. That’s up 2.0 percent from 10,975 such homes listed in July, but down 1.2 percent from one year ago.

For condos and townhomes, the 2,387 properties listed without offers in August represented a 4.2 percent decrease from the 2,492 properties listed without offers in July and a decrease of 21.1 percent from last year.

This month’s GLVAR statistics include activity through the end of August 2011. 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 reported by GLVAR include:

• The monthly value of local real estate transactions tracked through the MLS during August increased 14.3 percent for homes, to more than $546 million. For condos and townhomes, the total value of all sales in August was more than $73 million, up 9.7 percent from July. Compared to one year ago, total sales volumes in August were up by 14.7 percent for homes and up 0.1 percent for condos and townhomes.

• Through August, 64.1 percent of all homes and 67.7 percent of all condos and townhomes sold within 60 days. That compares to July, when 65.5 percent of all homes and 68.5 percent of all condos and townhomes sold within 60 days.

About the GLVAR GLVAR was founded in 1947 and provides its nearly 11,500 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.lasvegasrealtor.com.

Contact: George McCabe, B&P (702) 967-2222 or 325-7358

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