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July 18, 2014

Nevada foreclosures affects Las Vegas first-time homebuyers and investors in a positive way.

The Nevada housing market was hard hit during the Great Recession, but little by little the state is recovering. In May, state residents experienced a decrease in foreclosures compared to last year. While this is great news for current homeowners who are regaining lost equity in their home, it signals a diminishing opportunity for potential homebuyers to purchase undervalued homes in the form of a short sale, HUD, or bank owned property.

Related resource: “The Las Vegas Housing Market Is Back on Track”

Nevada Foreclosure Market

Nevada saw a 57 percent decrease in foreclosure activity year-over-year in May, according to RealtyTrac’s latest U.S. Foreclosure Market Report, compared to a national drop of 26 percent. The incredible dip in foreclosure activity is almost out shined by the fact that May was the eighth consecutive month with an annual decrease in foreclosures for Nevada.

On the national level, though, the state still has a ways to go since it ranks No. 3 for foreclosure rates behind Florida and Maryland. RealtyTrac found one in every 717 Nevada homes had a foreclosure filing in May. This leaves an open window of opportunity for first-time homebuyers and investors alike in the Las Vegas area, including short sale properties.

The  Las Vegas-Paradise metro area came in lower than the state with one in every 618 housing units having a foreclosure filing. The metro ranks No. 18 out of 20 among U.S. cities with highest foreclosure rates.

Wait — What Are the Pros for Buyers?

The Nevada figures released by RealtyTrac are positive for first-time homebuyers and investors since the inventory of distressed properties is there, whether in the form of a pre-foreclosure, foreclosure or a short sale. In order to avoid sending a home into foreclosure, the lender agrees to short sale a home when they accept less than the total amount owed on the mortgage.

Currently you can pick from 9,073 potential Las Vegas properties that are in some stage of foreclosure. The median foreclosure sales price is $135,000, up by 2 percent from April 2013, according to RealtyTrac.

Now is an excellent time for first-time homebuyers or investors to meet with a First Option mortgage lender to discuss Las Vegas mortgage rates and applicable home loans. We encourage you to do so before you start reviewing homes with a realtor since you increase your chances of speeding up the home buying process by receiving a pre-approved mortgage, especially if the home is in foreclosure rather than a short sale.

If you are interested in a short sale home, ask your mortgage lender about the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA) Program, which has benefits for both the buyer and the seller. One benefit being it speeds up the process of closing the sale.

Related resource: “Everything You Need to Know About FHA Home Loans in Las Vegas”

Like first-time homebuyers, investors are attracted to foreclosed and short sale homes because of the price. The home will probably need some work, but after that investors can easily flip a home for resale or rent it out. Comparing the condition of foreclosed homes to those in short sale, generally the latter are in much better condition and easier to manage.

Why Hire a Realtor

Whether you are a first-time homebuyer learning the ropes or an established investor, it is beneficial to work with a local realtor that First Option stands behind. Our partner realtors go through a screening process before we will work with them. They know the ins-and-outs of sourcing and reviewing auction lists, reviewing public records such as titles and liens, and many specialize in foreclosure listings. They are also very familiar with Las Vegas neighborhoods, so they can save you time during the search process and help you identify an area suitable for your specific lifestyle needs.

If you are seeking a Las Vegas home and are interested in mortgage rates, fill out our Fast Response form or call our local branch at (702) 669-5400‎. Feel free to utilize our mortgage calculator to estimate monthly payments. We are here for you!

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