LVRJ: Local Home Sales on Comeback Trail

Hubble Smith fleshes out the statistics from yesterday:

Home sales are making a comeback in Las Vegas and inventory has been reduced to about an eight-month supply, but prices continue their free fall from a year ago, a strong signal that the housing market has yet to enter recovery.

Actually, if you divide 3,173 into Monday’s inventory level of 22,091, you get 6.96 months, but we’re getting the benefit of the April/May spring buying boom right now, so it will probably widen a bit in the next two months.

Hubble also points out that foreclosure sales are pretty closely matched to new foreclosures, suggesting we’re near equilibrium:

Perhaps overlooked in all of the reports is that foreclosure sales in Las Vegas were about 85 percent of the number of new foreclosures, indicating that the market is nearing equilibrium between foreclosure absorption and foreclosure creation.

That’s one benchmark for recovery, Murphy said.

“When we get to the point where the banks are selling more than they acquire, then and only then will we be in a recovery mode,” he said.

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