Las Vegas, Phoenix, showing signs of imminent housing slowdown

Las Vegas homes for sale (Credit: iStock)

In Los Angeles and San Francisco, many homebuyers are still facing a competitive bidding process. But other pockets of the country are facing a growing glut of unsold homes.

In markets like Las Vegas and Phoenix, home sales have significantly slowed in the last year, signaling a potential shift nationwide, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Existing home sales in Las Vegas, for example, have decreased nearly 12 percent in November compared to the year prior. That’s in spite of 23 percent of homes there getting price cuts, up from 11 percent a year earlier.

While discounted re-listings may be commonplace in expensive markets like L.A., they raise an alarm in more moderately-priced markets like Las Vegas or Tampa. Especially because many of these markets have yet to recover from the last recession.

Las Vegas was among the worst hit by the 2008 housing crash. The median home price there remains 7 percent below the previous peak of $315,000 more than a decade ago.

Still, the expectation is that any downturn won’t be nearly as bad as the last cycle, considering that buyers and lenders are more cautious than they previously were. Mortgage delinquencies nationwide also fell to their lowest level in 12 years in September, signaling a bit of good news for the housing market.

As for inventory, there are about 7,000 homes on the market in Las Vegas. There were more than 20,000 homes listed for sale during the latest crash. [WSJ] – Natalie Hoberman

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