Relocating to Northern Nevada: Housing demand at an all-time high
Special to the NNBV
EDITOR'S NOTE: This article is adapted from the 2019 edition of the Northern Nevada Relocation Guide, a publication produced in partnership with The Reno+Sparks Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada. Go here to view the digital version of the second annual magazine, which will be inserted in the upcoming Sept. 30 print edition of the NNBV (for subscribers).
RENO/SPARKS, Nev. — Reno’s red-hot economy continues to push home prices to record highs, and developers are scrambling to add inventory to the market and alleviate pent-up demand for new single-family homes.
In June 2013, the median sales price for single-family homes in Reno and Sparks was $222,000, the Reno-Sparks Association of Realtors reports. That number was a 30 percent increase from the same month a year prior.
Fast forward six years later (and please sit, in case your knees get weak) — the median sale price of a single-family home in June 2019 rose to $400,000. That’s an 80 percent increase in median sales price in just 72 months.
The run-up is primarily the result of thousands of newcomers moving to the region, and the inability of residential developers to keep pace with demand. In July 2019, there was just 2.3 months of sale inventory on the market, which is deep into a seller’s market.
Although the summer months saw a spike in median sales price, the median sales price for the first half of the year was $385,000, notes Angelica Reyes, RSAR president.
Mike Kazmierski, president and CEO for the Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada, says Reno-Sparks is in the midst of an unprecedented transition as it segues into a mid-sized city.
“Prices are up because supply has been down, but we are working to improve on the supply side,” Kazmierski says. “A lot of availability depends on what people are looking for. Are they looking for good schools? Proximity to place of employment? Downtown living? The beauty of this region is that we offer (housing) options in all of those areas.
“We have single-family homes in the best school districts, downtown living continues to be developed, and we have more affordable housing in the outskirts. People have options, it just depends on where they want to live and the quality of life they are looking for.”
While price remains a point of contention for homebuyers, options abound for buying a home in the Truckee Meadows and surrounding communities. Here’s a closer look at some of the many new housing developments under construction in the region:
- National homebuilder D.R. Horton is erecting three communities at Verdi: Estates, Crest and Falls at West Meadows. Homes in each community range in size from 2,350 to 3,200 square feet. Prices at Crest begin around $460,000, homes at Falls start at $491,000, and homes at the Estates start at $527,000.
- Meridian 120, also in Verdi near Cabela’s, features two communities: Argos and Quest. Homes at Quest range in size from 2,185 to 2,982 square feet and start in the $400,000 range. Homes at Argos, meanwhile, range in size from 2,824 to 3,639 square feet and start in the $600,000 range.
- Luxury homebuilder Toll Brothers also in active in northwest Reno. Its Cliffs at Somersett community offers homes ranging in size from 2,636 to 4,188 square feet. Prices range from $611,000 to $1 million.
- Toll Brothers also has single-family home communities under development at Rancharrah, Damonte Ranch in South Reno, and in North Sparks.
- Regional builder Ryder Homes has communities underway in Northwest Reno (The Pointe at Somersett), northeast Sparks (Ventana at Sierra Shadows), north Sparks (Shadow Ridge) and South Reno (the Meadows). Homes at Shadow Ridge range in size from 2,352 to 3,043 square feet and start near $450,000. The Pointe at Somersett features home sites ranging in size from 2,386 to 3,057 square feet with prices starting at $556,000. Ventana at Sierra Shadows is Ryder’s newest community. It’s located north of Wingfield Springs in Sparks, with home sizes ranging from 2,044 to 2,215 square feet.
There also are many new communities under development in North Valleys, Lemmon Valley, Cold Springs and North Reno that typically offer more affordable price points for new homebuyers. For instance, Paradiso Communities’ Legacy Point subdivision located on the north slope of Peavine Mountain has homes starting at $300,000.
Newcomers to the region can’t fail to notice the thousands of new apartment units under construction if that’s more to their liking. And of course, the residential resale market offers homes in desirable communities such as Midtown, the Old Southwest, and Caughlin Ranch to name just a few.
Months into the pandemic, many states and regions are in stages of recovery, some slower than others — and Reno-Sparks is in a much better position than most, says Sacramento financial analyst Sanjay Varshney.