I’m confident that anyone who tried to predict where they’d be at the end of 2020 was wrong. No one could have anticipated the realities of last year. Trying to plan for the future, either professionally or personally, has been challenging for many because we simply don’t know what’s just around the corner. We started the year with an air strike on Iranian army general Qasem Soleimani and ended the year with a worldwide pandemic that has killed hundreds of thousands and new leadership for the country. To say the future is uncertain is an understatement.
One industry that hasn’t gone the way anyone expected is the residential housing market in Nevada, which has been both interesting and surprising to watch. When the realities of the pandemic first hit Nevada, many predicted that the housing market, particularly on the southern end of the state, would crash as it did during the Great Recession. All year, we watched housing prices, waiting for the other shoe to drop. Instead, by the end of 2020, Nevada was in the midst of a boom for residential real estate. Part of the reason for the hot sales market is that mortgage rates are at an all-time low. According to FreddieMac, the average 30-year, fixed rate mortgage was 2.71 percent, down just over a full percentage point from last year.
In southern Nevada, as of the latest data available at press time, the Las Vegas Association of REALTORS (LVR) reported an all-time record for the sixth straight month in housing sales. The median price of existing single-family homes sold through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) was $345,000 in November, up 12.4 percent from the same month last year. Total sales were also up, 26.1 percent for homes and 34.7 percent for condos and townhomes, significantly shrinking housing supply. Northern Nevada too has been dealing with a significant housing shortage for a number of years, although sales are a bit more level. The median sold price for a single-family home was flat at $455,000 although the median price for a condo or townhome was up 7.8 percent year-over-year to $275,000. So, we’re looking at a hot seller’s market that, either through inventory or housing prices, appears to be unsustainable.
Now, for comparison, let’s take a look at our neighbor, California, where housing prices are notoriously high. According to the United States Census, in 2017, California had the highest out-migration of any state. From 2017 to 2018 approximately 50,000 of those residents relocated to Nevada. Honestly, why wouldn’t they? It just makes sense. Nevada is close to the amenities California offers only we have more affordable housing, a better business climate and a lower overall cost of living, just to name a few perks.
Call to Action: This year is the time to move to and buy in Nevada. In 2021, distressed real estate listings are expected to flood the market, driving prices down while interest rates remain low. It’s a perfect storm for anyone considering a move. Nevada is the place to be if you own a business, are looking to retire or are simply looking for an affordable, well-rounded place to raise a family. We welcome our new neighbors from California. But, do us a favor and leave the politics that are destroying that state’s economy behind.
2 Chronicles 7:14 (NKJV) “If my people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”