Las Cruces NM real estate 2009 pending home sales increase by 17% over 2008

You may have been hearing more and more how now is a good time to buy a home.

Living in Las Cruces

Living in Las Cruces

In Las Cruces NM, now is a great time to buy a home. I understand, the economy is in pretty bad shape in most of the country, but in Las Cruces it looks like we will be dodging the bullet. New Mexico State University busi­ness professors do not foresee a deep recession, at least locally.

NMSU busi­ness professors Ken Martin, Jim Peach and Chris Erickson spoke on various aspects of the Las Cruces NM economy and the national economy as part of an eco­nomic forums hosted by the Las Cruces Chamber of Commerce.  This forum was designed to give the public an expert analysis on the economic recession and how it is affecting business including Las Cruces real estate.

The most recent forum held Wednesday, May 13, the professors said “Las Cruces was in somewhat of a safety bubble”. Erickson said, “employment is still avail­able and local banks are still lending money“ The good news for us local­ly, is that “Las Cruces NM is much less subject to the kind of recessionary pressures that are affecting the rest of the economy” Erickson said.

The 17% increase in Las Cruces NM real estate pending sales just may be a good indicator the professors are right. The 138 contracts signed in March of this year for the purchase of existing Las Cruces NM homes, represents a 16 percent increase over the 119 contracts signed in February and a 17 percent increase over the 118 homes identified as pending a year earlier. The Las Cruces real estate market easily outperformed the average production of our national marketplace as a whole in the March survey.

I know, I know your reading this and thinking yeah but those figures are for March 2009 what about today. You are absolutely right, so look at the most recent figures taken from the Las Cruces Associa­tion of Realtor’s (LCAR) Multiple Listing and Information Service’s (MLIS) on May 19.  A total of 138 existing Las Cruces NM homes were waiting to close on the last day of April. That’s a 16 percent increase, over the 119 pending sales in March, and a10.4 percent increase over the 125 sales pending at the end of April 2008.

The writing is on the proverbial wall and buyers who have been camping out on the fence with their S’mores in one hand and their earnest money checks in the other are jumping off the fence and hitting the home shopping trail running.  An all time high in affordability, low mortgage interest rates now close to levels last seen 30 to 40 years ago and the government’s new $8,000 tax credit incentive have opened the door to home ownership for many who as recently as a year ago would not have qualified to buy a home, or for the home they really wanted to buy. This is especially true for first-time home buyers, who currently account for nearly 50 per­cent of all home sales, up from about 40 percent just 12 months ago.

If this evidence is not enough for your intelligent yet skeptical mind, grab your favorite beverage and do a property search on any web site offering a Multiple Listing Search (MLS) and do a little window shopping. You will quickly see why everyone is scrambling to find the home of their dreams at the most affordable price we have seen in years.


What? Photo Enforcement Cameras? Big Brother In Las Cruces NM.

Yes I said photo enforcement cameras. Four photo enforcement cameras have been installed around Las Cruces NM. Here are the following intersections.

I am glad to see them! To many drivers speed though the yellow light, which in some cases it works out that way and may be okay. However two or three cars follow and I know for a fact the light has turned red. Photo enforcement cameras in Las Cruces, long over due if you ask me.

So what happens to you if you get your photo taken running a red light in Las Cruces NM? Fines begin at $100 for running a red light and speeding. So slow down!

Las Cruces NM, on it’s way to becoming a saver city.

One of Las Cruces NM busiest intersections will see some congestion relief.

Telshor Boulevard and Lohamn Avenue one of Las Cruces NM. Busiest intersections will soon see less congestion. The project estimated to cost $2.4 million is being funded by a grant from the New Mexico State Highway Department. Governor Richardson’s Investment Partnership (GRIP2) program where the city of Las Cruces matches funds.

The project will reconstruct the intersection so as to provide for two through lanes, two left turn lanes and a right turn lane. Oops, almost forgot it will have a bike lane too. This is one of the intersections to get the new red light running cameras.

This congestion relief project should begin in August of this year and run through April of 2010. My Las Cruces NM Real Estate office is very close to this intersection. Although I will enjoy the benefits from the project, I am not looking forward to all the construction chaos.

30% decline of Las Cruces NM home sales in the third quarter of 08

Las Cruces NM real estate sales have declined this year over last. Not a big surprise, the down market just took a little longer to reach us here in Las Cruces NM.

Las Cruces Realtors only sold 485 homes during the third quarter of 2008. That is 214 fewer than last year. I have seen many Realtors making career moves to a completely different field. Those of us who are continuing to make home sales feel bad for our fallen coworkers and wish them well. It is interesting, for a while everyone and their brother became a Realtor or a builder, but now only the serious full time Realtor remains.

The largest decline came from new homes. New home sales were down 46.2 percent over last year third quarter. Existing homes did better but were still down 20% from last year or 88 fewer from the 426 sold in third quarter of 2007.

The average home price in Las Cruces NM is down 4.1 % over last year and the median price is down 4 %. Remember the median price is where half the homes sold for more and half sold for less. With declining prices we are seeing longer days on the market. New homes days on market are now about 6 months and existing homes days on market is 141 days.

So what do all these facts and figures mean?

If you are selling your home in Las Cruces NM, you better role up your sleeves and be ready for a long haul. You would be wise to pick a Realtor who is going to flood the Internet with your listing since 84% of all home buyers start their search online.

If you are a  buyer, WooooooHooooooo! Now is the perfect time to buy in Las Cruces NM. Selection is great,  prices haven’t been this low in years. Sales are still taking place in this market although at a slower pace but homes are being sold.

Las Cruces Population Almost 90,000

Wow! nearly 90,00. Dona Ana County should reach 200,000

I can’t believe how long it has been since I last posted on the blog. This post has some great info if you are considering a move to Las Cruces NM. Hope you enjoy it and please leave a comment.

Dona Ana County is the second most populated county in the state of New Mexico, with an estimated population of 193,000 in July 2006, per the University of New Mexico Bureau of Business and Economic Research.

The growth rate is 1.8 percent, if this continues, the county should reach a population of 200,000 in early 2008. ( whoa, that’s right now) Las Cruces is New Mexico’s second largest city with an estimated population of 86,268 as of July 2006.

According to the Mesilla Valley Economic Development Alliance, the largest employer in the county are the Las Cruses Public Schools, NMSU, White Sands Missile Range the City of Las Cruces and the Gadsen Independent School District.

Las Cruces still is enjoying  steady growth despite the rest of the country being hit particularly hard by the sub-prime mortgage crisis. Las Cruces is experiencing a down turn in home-building, however it isn’t considered a crisis. The number of homes on the market is finally starting to come down along with interest rates. (51/8 as of this post).

Hope you all find this information help-full, come back soon, I am preparing a post on the water situation here in Las Cruces.

What National housing bubble?

The Real Estate Market Alive and Well in Las Cruces.

I know what the National newspaper headlines are saying but, the Las Cruces real estate market is doing quite well.
Remember the national housing market is similar to the stock market they have their cycles . What is happening nationally is a course correction, people are still buying houses, mortgage rates are excel­lent – in the low to mid sixes – and people are still mov­ing to Las Cruces NM.

Las Cruces is still attractive.  The local market is somewhat immune to national shifts because people are still just discovering this area.

Las Cruces has been earning national recognition as one of the best places to retire and start a small busi­ness, among other attributes. Add a relatively low cost of living and one can understand why this nugget in the Land of Enchantment has become more attractive. Over the past three to four years, folks wanting to relocate here increased the demand for homes. The supply could not keep up with demand and prices edged up. The great weather, New Mexico State University becoming part of the Western Athletic Conference, the spaceport and the jobs it will create, the growth in the military, more retirees – all these factors will continue to contrib­ute to the growth in this area.

Now inventory is high and prices have dropped…..buyers market! Now is the best time to buy a house in Las Cruces NM.

Of course, the recent downturn in the sub-prime mortgage industry didn’t help the housing national market. The sub-prime loans were primarily made to borrowers who could not qualify for any traditional loans. Lawrence Yun, senior economist for the National Association of Realtors reported the decline is understandable. “Mortgage problems were
peaking back in August when many of the Septem­ber closings were being negotiated, and that slowed sales notably in higher priced areas that rely more on jumbo loans,” he said. Yun added the good news is that mortgage availability has markedly improved in recent weeks with interest rates on jumbo loans falling, and more people are applying for safer and conforming FHA mortgage products. Some of the can­celled transactions will move forward as buyers apply for other loans. 

Happy house hunting!

The Top Selling Neighborhoods in Las Cruces

I ‘ve been getting a lot of questions from people all over. “What neighborhoods are selling the most homes”? So, here are the results, this took a little digging to compile this so I hope you find it helpful. Now these neighborhoods are ranked in order by number of closed sales during the first five months of 2007. The top five La Cruces area new and existing homes sale neighborhoods are…………………… 

High Range/Sonoma Ranch: 

When it comes to new homes sales, the High Range Sonoma Ranch area was number one with 77 closings January through May. The closings made up nearly 29 percent of the 269 new home sales reported by Las Cruces Multiple Listing Service. The median sales price for those homes sold was $300,000. The median price means half the homes sold for more than $300,000 and half sold for less.


4 – Hills: 

The area east of  I-25 and north of Highway 70 produced the second highest number of new homes sales. The 38 units sold there represented a little bit more 14 percent of the total sales reported, the median price for 4 Hills is $174,270.


Las Colinas: 

Number three on the top five list of best selling new home neighborhoods is the Joranada – Las Colinas area. Directly east of the 4 Hills area north of Hwy 70. This neighborhood produced 32 closed sales representing 11.9 percent of this years new homes sales. The median price in this area is $201,125.

Map of Joranada – Las Colinas  

East Mesa: 

The number four neighborhood on the new homes best selling list is the East Mesa area. Immediately east of the Jornada – Las Colinas area and takes in all of the land north of highway 70 from the eastern edge of the Jornada area to the foothills of the Organ Mountains. The area produced 10 percent of the new home production with 27 units reported sold. The median price in East Mesa is $179,840.

Map of East Mesa.  

San Andres: 

Last but not least is the San Andres area Located near Mayfield High School produced 25 sales or 9.3 percent of the total number of new homes sold. The median price is $153,950

Map of San Andres.  

There you have it the top five neighborhood new homes sales. Come back next week, I will post the numbers for existing homes sales