Las Vegas Real Estate: Sales and Inventory decreased in November

This is a key distressed market to follow since Las Vegas has seen the largest price decline of any of the Case-Shiller composite 20 cities.
From the GLVAR: GLVAR November 2012 Housing Statistics

GLVAR said the total number of local homes, condominiums and townhomes sold in November was 3,293. That’s down from 3,651 in October and down from 3,883 total sales in November 2011. Compared to October, single-family home sales during November decreased by 10.1 percent, while sales of condos and townhomes decreased by 8.5 percent. Compared to one year ago, home sales were down 15.1 percent, while condo and townhome sales were down 15.6 percent.
The total number of homes listed for sale on GLVAR’s Multiple Listing Service declined in November, with a total of 15,637 single-family homes listed for sale at the end of the month. That’s down 6.8 percent from 16,778 homes listed for sale at the end October and down 24.9 percent from 2011. …
The number of available homes listed for sale without any sort of pending or contingent offer also decreased from the previous month. By the end of November, GLVAR reported 3,849 single-family homes listed without any sort of offer. That’s down 5.6 percent from 4,079 such homes listed in October and down 60.6 percent from one year ago.
Meanwhile, 41.2 percent of all existing local homes sold during November were short sales. That’s down from 44.7 percent in October and from a record 44.8 percent in September, but still up from 26.8 percent one year ago. Continuing a trend of declining foreclosure sales, bank-owned homes accounted for 10.7 percent of all existing home sales in November, down from 11.6 percent in October.

A few key points:
• Inventory decreased in November, and inventory is down 24.9% from November 2011.  For single family homes without contingent offers, inventory is down sharply from a year ago (down 60.6% year-over-year).

• Short sales are almost four times foreclosures now. The GLVAR reported 41.2% of sales were short sales, and only 10.7% foreclosures. We’ve seen a shift from foreclosures to short sales in most areas (not just in areas with new foreclosure laws).  Note: If the Mortgage Debt Relief Act of 2007 is not extended, the number of short sales could decline significantly in 2013.

• The percent distressed sales was extremely high at 51.9% in November (short sales and foreclosures), but down from 56.3% in October. This means conventional sales are finally almost half the market in Las Vegas.

Overall these are signs of a distressed market slowly improving. The decline in overall sales is because of fewer distressed sales (Las Vegas had a record number of real estate sales last year, even higher than at the peak of the bubble in 2005, because of all the distressed sales!).

The numbers to watch are inventory (and non-contingent inventory), and the percent conventional sales. Inventory is down sharply, and conventional sales are increasing.

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