Omaha Market Considered Strong Despite Bank Foreclosures Short Sales

by on cities

Sales of residential properties, particularly bank foreclosures short sales, increased in Omaha, Nebraska in 2010 compared with year-ago levels. Housing industry analysts have ranked Omaha as one of the U.S. markets that will gain more strength in 2011, with growth expected to be gradual but steady for the rest of the year.

Omaha foreclosures have not been as high as in other metro regions of the U.S. and probably one of the reasons why the area has been ranked among the steadiest housing markets in the country. Sales of houses in Omaha increased by 2% during the full year period that ended January 2011, while median selling prices also increased. Median rate for houses sold during the period recorded a 1.9% rise compared with the previous year, with median selling price pegged at around $160,000 as of the last week of February.

According to analysts, high demand for existing and foreclosed homes in Nebraska and the continuous job growth buoyed housing prices. However, although accumulated sales of dwellings posted an increase, sales of new houses posted a decline. Data showed that sales of newly-built dwellings dropped by 8% over the same period, while condominium unit sales declined by a huge 17%. Permits that were issued for construction projects also dipped last year by 14% from a year before.

Realtors have attributed the drop in building permits to the persistent pull of low-priced bank foreclosures short sales on overall housing sales and on the end of a major military project last year. Although a decline in building activities is predicted again for this year, analysts stated that the drop will not be as considerable as the previous period and will likely be around 4%.

Latest housing data showed that bank foreclosure properties in the metropolitan area are a little over 1,000, against 3,532 houses for sale. Market analysts have claimed that Omaha has not been hit by the foreclosure crisis as much as most parts of the U.S. and did not experience sharp fluctuations in property values. Because of all these factors, analysts consider the metro area as one of the strongest housing markets in the whole country.

Although bank foreclosures short sales will not be totally eradicated from the Omaha market in just a few years, market analysts still believe that the area's housing industry growth will outpace majority of other metropolitan regions. They expect the market to record massive growth by 2012, mainly because of the healthy home prices and the comparatively minimal impact that foreclosures have had on the area.