Las Vegas Short Sales Stall For a Month or So

December 3, 2010: The Las Vegas real estate economy has virtually stopped this holiday season. The hits to this website blog went down 50% beginning mid-November of this year. They are creeping back up. Historically, hits to my blog are a leading indicator, by about a month, of the Las Vegas real estate economy. That is- when my website gets less traffic, a month later the Las Vegas real estate economy slows. And vice-versa. When my website gets increased hits, the Las Vegas real estate economy, about a month later begins to expand.

When it comes to short sales, things are stuck. The slowdow is probably the result of a huge backlog of real estate inventory. Right now, it is often not even worth it for banks to foreclose. Banks are taking a breather from the foreclosure and short sale process. The robo-signing controversy probably discourages foreclosures too.

As long as the banks do not push forward with foreclosures, homeonwers will quietly live rent-free. Once the banks begin pushing foreclosures again, the homeowners will decide to retain a listing real estate agent to do a short sale.

Nevada’s outlook was lowered to negative from stable by Moody’s Investors Service, citing a $3 billion budget gap and an unexpected decline in the gaming industry, “a sector that was previously believed to be recession proof.”

The negative outlook reflects “a very large expected budget gap for the next biennium; uncertainty around how the state will solve the gap, given the fact that the state has drawn down almost all of its reserves already; a very weak economy, and uncertainty around the recovery of gaming in the state,” Moody’s analysts Emily Raimes and Julius Vizner said in the report.

Nevada’s gaming industry, the state’s economic engine, has show signs of stabilizing, according to the report. Las Vegas Strip casino gambling rose 2.8 percent in September to $520.6 million, the Nevada Gaming Control Board said Nov. 10.

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