Las Vegas: The Country’s Craziest Housing Market

by Mark Wellborn


If you are having trouble buying a home in the DC area, just be glad that you aren’t looking in Las Vegas. CNBC recently ran a fascinating article that profiles a Maryland couple’s search for their new home in Sin City, and any prospective buyer in the area will likely thank their lucky stars that they aren’t house hunting there.

The article tells the story of a woman named Katie who is moving to Vegas because her husband was recently transferred to the area. The husband has a solid job with the government, which is covering moving expenses, closing costs and Realtor fees. The piece notes that the average median price for a home in Las Vegas is now just $138,000, a price point which surely sounds enticing to buyers. However, the Realtor, an old friend of Katie’s, sent her a list of warnings that made the buying process sound like a nightmare. Here are a few from the CNBC piece:

“This market is crazy and many things are just not going to make any sense. I can guarantee you 99.99% of the listings emailed to you will no longer be available by the time you get here. Properties are getting multiple offers within a few days of being on the market, the most offers I’ve heard a house had recently was 44. 40% of all transactions are cash purchases. We have 1/2 the inventory we had a year ago and 4 times as many buyers as we did a year ago.”

When they got out there, things got crazier:

“We went to a home that had been on the market for one day, and the key was stolen out of the lock box. Our Realtor said immediately, ‘You want this home.’ She told us another Realtor had stolen the key because they wanted their client to get it. So what did my Realtor do? She broke in. And sure enough this was the home we fell in love with.”

Despite the Realtor’s innovative tactics, the couple’s offer was not accepted because there were several buyers willing to pony up 100 percent cash. Katie and her husband have now decided to build their new home.

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/las_vegas_the_countrys_craziest_housing_market/1417


  1. Tim said at 12:55 pm on Friday October 16, 2009:

    Sounds like D.C. to me…

  1. BobJ said at 3:15 pm on Friday October 16, 2009:

    That story is crazy. If agents were breaking into homes here, all hell would break loose.

  1. Jon said at 2:49 pm on Monday October 19, 2009:

    DC is not that bad at all. Very interesting.

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