Home sales drop in April; prices creep up

The number of existing single family homes sold in Washoe County decreased in April while the selling price crept up due to a decline in the number of homes on the market, according to a report released last week by the Reno/Sparks Association of REALTORS.

“While things are looking up after a few tough years for the housing market, one issue that has surfaced is that of inventory, specifically shadow inventory,” Dave Hansen, 2015 president RSAR and a Realtor with Coldwell Banker Select RealEstate, said in a written statement. “Shadow inventory, or properties in foreclosure or in serious delinquency status, has been steadily declining in recent years. In the Reno/Sparks market, distressed sales made up 11 percent of existing-home sales this past April, compared to 21 percent in April 2014.

“While it’s obviously a great thing to see fewer distressed homes, it does mean an even tougher inventory situation for prospective home buyers. Paired with rising home values, lower shadow inventory means it could take longer to find the right home at the right price.”

Overall, 533 homes sold countywide in April. That’s a decrease of less than 1 percent compared to the same month a year ago and down 3 percent compared to March 2015. The median home price of $273,000 was up 19 percent compared to a year ago and up 1 percent over March.

Sparks, including Spanish Springs, saw the biggest change in the county, with 155 homes sold in April 2015, down 8 percent over last year and down 20 percent compared to last month. The median sale price increased 16 percent over last year and increased 1 percent compared to a month ago.

Reno, including the North Valleys, was more balanced with 365 homes sold for an increase of 3 percent over a year ago and up 8 percent compared to March. The median home price was $281,000 — up 21 percent over April 2014 and up 1 percent over March 2015.

Fernley, in Lyon County, also experienced a big swing. The number of homes sold totaled 46 for an increase of 21 percent compared to last year and a decrease of 16 percent compared to last month. The price of an existing single-family home increased by 22 percent compared to April 2014 and increased 14 percent compared to March 2015.

The above statistics are for existing, stick-built single-family dwellings.

In other data released last week:

The number of days on the market decreased in the county. In April, houses spent an average of 92 days, down 4 percent compared to March, and down 14 percent compared to April 2014.

There were 747 houses on the market in April, up 15.8 percent compared to March and up 9 percent compared to a year ago.

There were 2.9 months of unsold inventory at the end of April, which was comparable to March and down 3.9 percent a year ago. A balanced market has five to seven months of supply, according the association.

For condominiums/ townhouses in Washoe County, the median sale price in April was $125,000, an increase of 56 percent from a year ago.

In Reno, the condominium/townhome median sales price in April was $125,000, an increase of 65 percent over a year ago.

In Sparks, the median price for condominiums/townhomes was $125,250 for a 25 percent increase over a year ago.


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