Henderson Banks Foreclosed Homes and the Las Vegas Factor

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Banks foreclosed homes in the city of Henderson continue to grow in number because of its proximity to Las Vegas, according to local analysts and members of the Greater Las Vegas Realtors Association.

Henderson grew to become one of the fastest-rising cities and the second-largest cities in Nevada because of its closeness to the city of Las Vegas where gamblers, tourists, businesspeople and travelers come to seek pleasure and money.

Population increased in Henderson by about 33 percent since 2000, as Las Vegas white-collar workers sought the city for more affordable homes and rentals. People bought larger homes and borrowed more money to finance their home improvement projects. They figured that Las Vegas was flowing with money, and the city will finance their homes and lifestyles.

But their high-flying days abruptly ended, and now their city suffers from an 11.3-percent foreclosure rate – higher than that of Nevada, which was 10.2 percent in 2009. Henderson contributed a lot of units to the more than 112,000 residential properties that were hit with foreclosure postings in 2009 across Nevada.

Based on figures from the Las Vegas realtor association, more than 60 percent of total home resales in December in the Las Vegas metro area, which also covers Henderson, were repossessed properties, including government foreclosures such as HUD homes and VA foreclosures.

Auctions of banks foreclosed homes are now common in the metro area. Recently, Hudson & Marshall auctioned off 12 homes priced between $35,000 and $525,000 in just one of their frequent auctions.

According to Paul Bell, president of the GLVRA and a realtor who has been buying and selling properties for 23 years in the area, home prices in Henderson in the fourth quarter of 2009 fell by almost seven percent while prices in Las Vegas improved by 0.19 percent.

Prices in Henderson decreased to $181,000 on the average in the fourth quarter, compared to $250,000 in 2007.

Rob Wigton, head of the Nevada Association of Realtors, said that there are other major causes of foreclosure in the state, aside from the economic downturn. For instance, in Henderson, the foreclosure rate is high although the jobless rate is only seven percent and the average household income in the city is $56,000.

Wigton explained that banks foreclosed homes in Las Vegas were also driven by life change events such as divorce, death and medical illness, based on the results of a study his association conducted.

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