Douglas housing market slowing

Builders work on a home May 30 along Buckeye Road in Minden.

Builders work on a home May 30 along Buckeye Road in Minden.
Photo by Kurt Hildebrand.

Douglas County’s housing market appears to be cooling off, according to figures released last week by Sierra Nevada Realtors.

May 2023 saw 62 home sales in Douglas County, down 6.1 percent from April, when 66 homes were sold and 7.5 percent from May 2022.

In the second quarter of 2022, the Douglas County Assessor’s Office reported 213 homes were sold across the county.

The median sales price in East Fork Township, which includes Carson Valley and Topaz Ranch Estates, was up to $530,000, up 1.9 percent from April, but down 10.5 percent from May 2022.

The first quarter of 2023 saw a drop in home sales in the township from 131 in the last quarter of 2022 to 104 in the first quarter of 2023, according to the Douglas County Assessor’s Office.

That was the lowest number since the second year of the Great Recession in 2009 and the lowest number in any quarter since.

The median sales price of homes sold during the quarter dropped to $543,700, with the average price of $645,416, both decreases from the fourth quarter of 2022, when 167 homes were sold.

The decrease in home sales made a dent in the county’s taxable sales.

Douglas merchants reported a 7.7 percent drop in sales during the month of March, bringing in $85.77 million, according to figures released by the Nevada Department of Taxation at the beginning of June.

Sectors associated with new homes, including building material and supplies, electronics and appliances, furniture and home furnishings posted big decreases during the month.

Building materials showed a 41.8 percent decline from March 2022, down to $5.6 million from $9.6 million.

Furnishing new homes dropped 43.9 percent to $1.5 million, while appliances and electronics dropped 33.5 percent to $2 million.

General merchandise stores, like the two Walmarts and the Target, reported a 9.1 percent decrease in sales over the month to $9.34 million.

Taxable sales generated in the tourism sectors showed mixed results.

The largest category in the county, food service and drinking places reported $12.18 million, up 12.2 percent from last year. Accommodations were down 16.8 percent for March to $3.37 million, while amusement, gambling and recreation was down 41.6 percent to $1.1 million.

March was the sixth month of decreases, with October 2022 the last month to see an increase in taxable sales compared to the same month in 2021.

However, the first four months of the fiscal year, which started July 1, 2022, where taxable sales shot up to around or above $100 million a month in the first quarter, are still carrying the county along.

According to figures released by the Nevada Department of Taxation, the county is still ahead 4.2 percent going into the final quarter of 2023.

Other Northern Nevada counties such as Carson City, Churchill and Washoe counties are either down for the year or right on the bubble, while the state’s economic engine in Clark County is up 9.3 percent for the year with $47.8 billion in sales since July 1. That’s nearly three times of the combined sales for the entire rest of the state over the first three quarters.

This is the first year Douglas County will rely entirely on sales taxes collected in the state after it lost its guaranteed status on July 1.


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