The year couldn’t have gone off to a more surprising start. With the new administration implementing sweeping reforms in the housing industry, purchasing luxury real estate is now in a whole other form. The retraction of several last-minute orders and decrees have dramatically changed markets, on top of the expected speculation brought about by the change in leadership. Still, real estate experts in Las Vegas are confident that the changes will benefit the markets in the long run, and that sales for high-value communities like Summerlin, Highlands Ranch or Spanish Hill.

With that mind, prospective buyers are keeping their ears up for any news that can further take the local real estate market on a different course. In the past few weeks, new developments and information have surfaced that may pique the interest of anxious buyers and homeowners.

More Cooldowns

A previous post has pointed out that home sales have mellowed out throughout Las Vegas and the surrounding locales in recent months, although demands are still at a median point and resales are still popular. However, newly-released data reveals that nationwide home sales were slightly lower in December 2016 than they were in the previous year, with an annual gap of only 0.7 percent. Several pointers were considered to be the cause.

  • Mortgage rates combined with a lower inventory meant that fewer new properties were up for sale. The increased competition between buyers meant that sellers had to consider more people who planned to purchase their home, and so fewer closings were made.
  • Price adjustments also meant that fewer prospective homeowners could reach the required asking prices for their target properties. While the prices are not very high, fewer people can still afford to negotiate for lower values at this time of year. How it peters out in the next quarter is still up in the air, however.
  • Newer home buyers can also factor in on the overall statistics. The number of first-time buyers have remained unchanged year-on-year, but their presence may not yet be felt. First-timers may be waiting on the changes in the year before proceeding to initial negotiations with their prospective purchases.

Weird adjustments

Prices tend to move at the start of every year as marketers adjust to the changing season and fluctuating demands. This year, however, was way different from the immediate previous period because of an odd price increase. Usually, the early part of the year is the transition period where prices cool down a bit, but it was different for 2017.

  • Prices for single-family homes were up 8.7 year-on-year, a rather high jump for the bulkiest part of the Las Vegas real estate market. Possibly correlated is a slightly lower closing rate of 21 percent.
  • Homes on offer had also been reduced significantly in annual checks. These reduced homes on-offer may have contributed to the lower available inventory that has also affected the overall offering prices in town.
  • The growing population in the city has also contributed to the price move. Aside from the previously mentioned first-time buyers, growing families may be looking to purchase bigger properties to accommodate them, and will be in the market for such purchases. More people in the market means stiffer competition between buyers and less homes available at a time.

Back in Black

Despite the not-so-hot reports from the last part of 2016, locals need not be distressed about the entire situation. In fact, things might even be looking up in the second quarter of the year for both current and new home buyers in the Las Vegas Valley thanks to a number of positive programs that will let them get their home quickly.

  • The mayors for the various municipalities in The Valley have agreed to bring back a home purchasing grant programthat was first implemented in 2012 and has assisted over 420 homeowners with purchasing their current homes. A screening period will be held in March to determine potential beneficiaries.
  • Prices may be jumping at odd rates and inventory may be lower than expected, but a local residential project may just change that. A new apartment complex in Downtown Las Vegas hopes to put 1,000 new apartment units up for sale within the next few months, easing up on the inventory lull and providing more purchasing options for buyers.
  • Local teachers can now afford to own their homes even with limited budgets thanks to another government initiative, the Home for Teachers is Possible program, which grants aid for educators looking to purchase their own homes. Launched just last December, it aims to assist lower-income educators with their home closings. The current projected number is 300 teachers before the program is reviewed for tweaks and changes.

There may still be a bit of uncertainty on how the Las Vegas luxury home scene will move in the coming months, but locals remain hopeful that the market will be able to weather the storm. Real estate experts are looking forward to an even better year ahead for the luxury properties scene.