January 21, 2022 - 3:00 pm
Las Vegas placed four master plans in the top 11 and five in the top 25 in the nation, and homebuilding shows no signs of slowing down in those developments in 2022.
The numbers released by national consulting firm RCLCO shows Summerlin retained its No. 3 spot in the country with 1,619 sales. That’s a gain of 11 percent over the 1,456 sales in 2020 and 23 percent over the 1,320 sales in 2019.
Summerlin remains below two in Florida. The Villages retained its No. 1 spot with 4,004 sales, a jump of 63 percent. No. 2 on the list again is Lakewood Ranch in Sarasota with 2,574 sales, a 20 percent increase.
In Las Vegas, Summerlin was followed by Cadence, a project of the LandWell Co. in east Henderson, which was No. 7 in the nation with 864 sales, a 1 percent increase over 852 sales in 2020. That’s 15 percent higher than the 753 sales in 2019. It ranked 10th in 2020.
Valley Vista, a project of DR Horton in North Las Vegas, was ranked eighth with 860 sales, a 15 percent decline over 1,017 sales in 2020 when it was ranked sixth. The new master plan, which did not have enough sales in 2019 to qualify for the top 50, is ranked No. 5 in the nation in 2021 based on rankings of John Burns Real Estate Consulting. It reported Valley Vista has 1,025 sales by including sales of Lennar Homes adjacent to D.R. Horton’s development.
Inspirada in west Henderson is ranked No. 11 with 741 sales, a 25 percent increase over the 592 sales in 2020. It’s 15 percent higher than the 645 sales in 2019. Inspirada was ranked 27th in 2020.
Skye Canyon in northwest Las Vegas was ranked in a tie for 22nd with 655 sales, 39 percent higher than the 472 sales in 2020 when it was ranked 46th in the nation. It had 460 sales in 2019.
“Las Vegas had five communities in this year’s master plan list, and three in the top 10 and then Inspirada at 11 and Skye Canyon 22nd,” said RCLCO Vice President Karl Pischke. “No other metropolitan area had more master plan communities in the top 10 than Las Vegas, which is a great distinction. When you look at the home sales within those five communities, they increased by about 8 percent between 2020 and 2021 (compared to 5 percent nationally for the top 50). That’s a positive picture. Low mortgage rates and demographics were helping drive some of that.”
Pischke said what they saw in Las Vegas and the rest of the country within master-planned communities was supply chain issues preventing them from capitalizing on the new-home demand they were seeing.
“What we’ve heard from Vegas is wait lists from homebuilders and a lot of issues related to material costs and inventory available for new home demand to capitalize on growth, which we think bodes positively for 2022 as we expect over time the supply-chain challenges and constraints get addressed,” Pischke said. “We certainly think demand will be strong. To the extent they can resolve those issues, we think the outlook for master-planned communities over the coming year is very positive.”
Ken Perlman, a principal with John Burns Consulting, said he feels good about the direction of the Las Vegas housing market. They survey builders on a monthly basis and most are averaging three to four sales per community per month.
Prices have risen more than 20 percent when looking at appreciation — a 13 percent year-over-year increase when comparing the same type of new home over the course of the year through November, Perlman said. That’s lower than the national numbers of 19 percent. The new home sales price is lower than the 26 percent of the Burns index for existing homes in Las Vegas over the last 12 months, he said.
“What we’re finding is builders in Las Vegas are really favoring a steady sales pace and steady appreciation in the market,” Perlman said. “What has impressed me the most about Las Vegas is how disciplined the builders have been in terms of raising prices when they’re supposed to, but continuing to maintain their sales. I feel very good about the direction the market is going.”
Las Vegas continues to benefit from the migrations of Californians and others looking for better value with a median new-home price just over $400,000 in Las Vegas, Perlman said.
“I can afford a really nice new home in a market like Las Vegas and can work in California,” Perlman said. “That has benefited Las Vegas tremendously. Think about that as it relates to a master plan. I can move and buy a 2,600-square-foot home with a couple of bedrooms and use one as an office and telecommute. At the end of the day I can go on a hike, use the community pool. There’s so many things those master plans have, and I can take advantage of all of them. And I can have more space and spread out from more people in the COVID environment.”
While the new-home market will stay strong and increase sales, it is unlikely to have double-digit price appreciation. Las Vegas had nearly 13,000 net sales in 2021, which is still below the 20,000 in 2006.
“Las Vegas is going to sell more homes, but the biggest question is whether the market has the ability to supply new homes,” Perlman said. “There’s such an inventory constraint. There’s plenty of demand and the market is not oversupplied by any imagination. The builders in Las Vegas have weathered so many storms with prices and volumes going through the roof in 2004 and 2005 and crashing in 2006 and 2007, builders now are opting that they got a good thing going, let’s continue to move sales forward and increase prices and be responsible about it.”
Pischke said Summerlin leads all actively ranked master-planned communities in terms of its total appearance on RCLCO’s list published since 1994. It’s been on the top 25 list for 25 years, including a top 10 appearance from 1994 to 2007, a top 10 appearance since 2015 and top three appearance in each of the last four years.
“It’s a very impressive performance for a mature community, which is not something you see very often,” Pischke said. “It says they’ve created an environment that’s in demand and provides the lifestyle and community offerings homebuyers are looking for.”
Perlman said Summerlin is nationally known and setting the bench market for what a community should be in the country and that’s continuing.
Kevin Orrock, president of the Las Vegas region for the The Howard Hughes Corp., the developer of Summerlin, said the master plan has had the best year since the Great Recession.
“After 32 years of development, we’re still No. 3, and that speaks volumes,” Orrock said. “What we created here with the amenities and diversity of product and what we’ve been able to create, we’re thrilled to be at this point in the evolution of the community to be such an attractive place people want to move to, live and work. To be up 11 percent from the year before during a pandemic is amazing. That’s a great number.”
Orrock singled out Summerlin’s move to create more attached and more affordable homes in the Redpoint district on the western side of Summerlin.
“We have gotten to the point in the community where we can meet the demands of a whole socio-economic group,” Orrock said.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported that the Hughes Corp. recently sold 216.4 acres off Town Center Drive and Tropicana Avenue for $135 million to developers who plan to build hundreds of houses. Pulte Homes and Toll Brothers are the developers of the guard-gated community that will have 561 single-family homes, parks and a recreational center, the R-J reported. It will be between The Summit Club and Mesa Ridge.
“One of the reasons for the sale to Toll and Pulte is the builders can get the product to the market quicker and decide how they want to divide up the property to their prospective buyers and products,” Orrock said.
Orrock said the Hughes Corp. owns 233 acres on the other side of that parcel and haven’t defined what that will be.
For 2022, there will be new districts, two of which are called Kestrel and Kestrel Commons. There will be seven new neighborhoods, and there will be a lot of activity in the west side of Summerlin north of the Redpoint district and south of Lake Mead Boulevard.
A new office building and luxury apartment complex will open in 2022. The company is also looking at other commercial projects in the Downtown Summerlin area.
Summerlin has about 4,500 acres left to develop for residential and commercial development.
“We’re still hard at it and think the market is going to be favorable, with a lot of demand for housing for the Las Vegas Valley,” Orrock said. “There is a constraint on land supply so Summerlin is positioned very well moving into the future. I am more excited about the future than I have ever been. It’s going to be attractive going forward.”
Cheryl Gowan, Cadence’s vice president of marketing, said 2021 was a strong year and anticipated the same for 2022. There were challenges with the supply chain and labor that impacted the numbers, she added.
“We had some builders that were limiting how many lots they had for sale in any given week to catch up with what they’ve already sold to build,” Gowan said. “And with costs going up you don’t want to sell something, today, if you can’t start building it for a week or two and costs go up. It affects your margins.”
Richmond American is set to open another neighborhood with large single-family homes within the next month while D.R. Horton, the newest entry with 1,200 home sites, will start selling in the coming months after purchasing a large parcel, Gowan said.
“We have some other builders coming in so we anticipate quite a few sales this year,” Gowan said. “We’re opening more amenities, in regards to parks and retail and will be announcing more retail in the next week or so. That all adds to the home sales.”
Pischke said it continues to be a strong-performing community that’s serving a value-oriented market in North Las Vegas and is able to tap into that demand. He suggested a lack of inventory likely contributed to the builder not surpassing 2021 by its calculations, similar to what some master plans faced in 2020.
“It will be interesting to see how they are able to perform in 2022 given that increased demand,” Pischke said. “The extent they are able to address the inventory issues they will be able to have an explosive year. Maybe it’s not surprising given how great a year they had in 2020. When you sell more than 1,000 homes in a year and fly through inventory it may take a little while to restock that.”
Tim Colbert, D.R. Horton’s Las Vegas division president, said in a statement that they are excited about the ranking and proud of their sales and construction team for the accomplishment to work toward the vision of homeownership.
Colbert said because Valley Vista homes have been in such high demand for the past few years, many of the community’s homes began selling out during 2021. That’s why there were fewer homes available than previously, he said.
“Valley Vista is expected to continue to be successful in 2022 as the community matures and more amenities become available for residents,” Colbert said. “A large community park is planned to be completed and opening during the spring with another large park slated to begin construction in the summer of 2022.”
Brian Kunec, president and regional general manager of KB Homes’ Las Vegas, Boise and Seattle divisions and managing partner for Inspirada, said in comparing it to other master plans, it’s in the mature stages and why it’s ranked lower in sales compared to others.
“We’re running out of builders and running out of lots as we move along,” Kunec said. “A lot of those other ones like Cadence and Summerlin have a good amount of runway and multiple builders.”
Kunec said their sales rose because of more inventory. Tri Pointe Homes brought on new parcels, and KB Homes brought in new products as well. Everyone is bullish on west Henderson, and he said he expects a strong 2022.
“Between 2020 when the pandemic hit and everybody putting the brakes on, KB and other builders put the brakes on with land that delayed some of the product coming to market,” Kunec said “We finally saw some of that come to market in 2021. We had a great year because we had more products on the market. West Henderson, where Inspirada is, continues to get better and better. It’s one of the best sub-markets in the valley and up and coming. Every six months, there’s a new amenity. You have the Raiders headquarters and they’re building the (Las Vegas) Aces headquarters next door. There’s also various other commercial developments going up and jobs being created. People working there with a new job want to live close by, and the logical place to look is Inspirada, which has turned out to be a great master plan.”
Robb Beville, division president Nevada for Century Communities which acquired remaining parcels from the original developer the Olympia Cos., said the numbers rose in 2021 because more neighborhoods opened.
“I expect 2022 to beat 2021,” Beville said. “The demand is very aggressive. People are prequalifying in higher numbers so far this year. One thing that will happen by the end of 2022 we will see the departure of Pulte, Woodside and one of the Toll Brother communities will probably sell out. The future phases are Toll and Century. I own the rest of the project and sold a couple of parcels to Toll and kept everything else.”
Beville said he has six communities ready to open in 2022 on top of four existing ones for Century Communities. Toll will have two that will run into 2023 and two more opening this year, he added.
Century Communities has more than 1,350 lots to build homes in Skye Canyon.