2015 Reno and Sparks Market Recap

#blog-info# The Reno and Sparks real estate market has seen some major changes over the last few years, what was once one of the hardest hit housing markets in...

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2015 Reno and Sparks Market Recap

Posted by Candy Noel on Sunday, January 31st, 2016 at 8:17pm.

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The Reno and Sparks real estate market has seen some major changes over the last few years, what was once one of the hardest hit housing markets in the nation has been on the rebound. If you're like most, you're wondering where things are headed in 2016 and beyond. We're here to compare 2014 and 2015 as well as the trends we're seeing as we head into 2016. Over the last few years the market has transitioned from bank owned properties and short sale properties, accounting for only 4% of December 2015 sales. Amazingly traditional sales accounted for 92% of December 2015 sales. Housing prices have drastically changed for the better, a great thing for home owners but now becoming harder to find the once coveted 'deal' post-recession.

The graph below shows the median home price of the Reno/Sparks market for the past 11 years.  We’re able to visualize the peak and low, currently we’re still 20% lower in December 2016 than the market peak in 2006.


  • December 2011 – Median home price for Reno/Sparks was $155,000  (Note: bottom was January 2012 with a median home price of $135,000)
  • December 2012 – Median home price for Reno/Sparks was $186,500 up 20.3% from December 2011
  • December 2013 – Median home price for Reno/Sparks was $231,000 up 23.9% from December 2012
  • December 2014 – Median home price for Reno/Sparks was $261,995 up 13.4% from December 2013
  • December 2015 – Median home price for Reno/Sparks was $290,000 up 10.7% from December 2014

The graphs below shows the median home price, price per square foot and number of sales from December 2014 to December 2015 in the Reno/Sparks market.  You can see the common seasonal trend of sales and listings tending to pick up in late February and start to taper down in October.

                 Source: Reno Sparks Association of Realtors

Recent data shows Reno expecting over 40,000 new residents in the coming two years. This is spurring a massive push in new construction in an attempt to keep up with a never before seen demand. There is little hope of building as fast as new residents will arrive, which transitions into a higher demand for existing homes, furthering the upswing in prices. If you're looking to see the current homes being built visit our New Construction Page for details on current and upcoming new communities. On the flip side interest rates rose slightly in mid-December, the first time since the recession.  The initial rate increase was minimal and should have little effect on loan affordability nationwide, however future rate increases could potentially put a damper on home prices.

The market is up almost 115% since reaching bottom just a few short years ago. (January 2012 Median was$135,000, December 2015 Median was $290,000) This has made many investors and would be home buyers become a bit hesitant to purchase after such a vast recovery, but if all the pieces continue to fall into place we think it could be an excellent time to buy, just ahead of the expected economic boom to the area. Large businesses like Tesla, Switch, Amazon, Apple, eBay and more are making multi-billion dollar investments in Nevada, their true impact has yet to be seen as many are still in the planning and construction phase. Their projects so large simply the buzz has sparked an uptick in the economy.

Other companies that have announced they are coming to the area and they’ll be building new construction, taking over existing real estate and hiring thousands of new employees from the area.


  • Angie’s Artisan Treats/ BOMMCHICKAPOP: One of the nation’s fastest growing brands of natural popcorn
  • AZZ Galvanizing: An Eco Friendly Plant and global provider of galvanizing services
  • Better Light: Advanced manufacturing and distribution center of energy efficient industrial lighting products
  • BlackRidge Technology: A cyber-security company
  • Cascade Designs Manufacturing Company: A leader in outdoor adventure gear
  • Clear Capital: A technology leader in real estate valuation and analytics solutions
  • ETailer: Online sales of popular ice creams, gelatos, sorbets, pies and accompaniments<
  • Hubert Company: Worldwide leader in food service and food retail product solutions
  • IMMY, INC: A leader in 3D augmented reality and virtual reality imaging
  • Koch: Business Solution IT Applications Center
  • Meri Meri: Designs and distributes party supplies
  • Nutrient Foods: An advanced scientific nutritional foods research and manufacturing company
  • Pioneering Health care Technology Company: A company that improves health care by guiding patients to better physicians
  • Quality Bicycle Products: An international wholesale distributor of bicycle components and outdoor gear
  • Southern Prosthetic Supply Distribution Center: World’s largest distributor of orthotic and prosthetic supplies
  • Teleperformance U.S.A Contact Center: Will provide a broad range of support for a major financial services
  • Tulare: Supports construction, maintenance, servicing and compliance testing for the petroleum industry
  • Uber: Connecting riders to drivers through an app<

Tahoe Reno industrial Center

  • Aqua Metals: World’s first clean battery recycling facility
  • BI Nutraceuticals: Manufacturing and Distribution Facility
  • SuperNAP: Data Center a Switch Company
  • Zulily: Distribution Center


  • Hose Master: An advanced manufacturing plant that fabricates flexible, metal hoses
  • Indy Hanger: Manufacturer of environmentally friendly galvanized hangers


  • Deceuninck: A global organization specializing in PVC window and door systems and composites for the building industry

Incline Village

  • Ghost Systems: A high tech security company

Source: EDAWN: Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada

The revitalization efforts focused in the MidTown district have completely changed the face of the area South of Downtown into a booming and diverse area full of art, music, food and a great selection of local bars. The surrounding area has seen a major transformation of homes as well as property values. As these efforts continue to spread it provides not only jobs but an overall change to what was becoming a tarnished image of Reno. We're becoming much more than an economy based purely on gambling, this diversity will likely be what keeps Reno ahead of the game as other gaming based economies are still feeling the struggle.

A proposed concept to keep an eye on for in midtown is the Reno Streetcar.  If adopted this trolley like streetcar will run from our University of Nevada Reno through downtown Reno and Midtown ending around Plumb Lane.  This will help pull the different districts together with an easy transportation system, something Reno hasn't seen much of in years past.

Source: Reno Streetcar Coalition


Big Happenings around Town

Source: Reno Gazeette Journal RGJ


Growth! Growth! Growth! – EDAWN announced the projected growth by 2020 is more than 50,000 new jobs and could now be closer to 65,000 by the newest companies announcements in 2015.  This leaves housing in high demand and to keep up with the projected forecast, EDAWN is projecting we need 9,000 new homes built every year for the next 5 years, and last year (2014) we only had 1,376 new homes built.  You’ll be seeing a lot more construction around town and skilled labors are in high demand!!


Rancharrah sold in October 2015 – The iconic 141 acre property boasting the beautiful Rancharrah mansion, state-of-the-art equestrian center and private lake will soon be the centerpieces for a new Master-Planned community. 117 acres will be dedicated to 7 villages consisting of 691 residential lots ranging from urban living to estate style lots. The remaining 25 acres will be dedicated to commercial, office, medical and retail uses.  Construction Starts Spring of 2016.


UNR is also expanding and will start design and construction on a new 35,000sq/ft, $20M School of the Arts facility.  This 3 story building will consist of a 300-seat recital hall, museum and sky-walk to the Church of fine arts.  UNR is a centerpiece of the overall economy and attracts top students from across the country, its continued expansion further serves to strengthen our workforce into the future.


“Bourbon Square Casino” (formally the Silver Club for 33 years) – In Downtown Sparks on Victorian Ave was a profitable casino that sold to a local developer in February 2015 who plans on converting the building into multi-family dwellings and offices.




3rd Street Flats – A new upscale apartment building will be taking over the once Kings Inn as 94 units in Summer 2016



In the News:

  • Reno, NV ranked as #8 in the top 10 cities for first-time home buyers by HousingWire.com
  • Nevada ranked as #7 having the most in-bound moves to the state.  In the western US, Nevada ranked #3 on the high-inbound list and has remained on this list for the past 5 years. United Van Lines Movers Study 2015
  • Nevada ranked #3 in the US by The Tax Foundation as having the best state business tax friendly climate
  • Reno, NV ranked #8 in the top 14 Best Startup Cities in America by Popular Mechanics.
  • Reno, NV ranked #1 as the most affordable city to live for singles by Go Banking Rates

Great Links when deciding if you’re buying in the right neighborhood

Thinking of Solar? Recent changes have put quite the damper on the major incentives for making the change, but it is being challenged and could go either way, it may just take longer to pay back the initial investment.  Check out Google’s Project Sunroof, it’ll let you know how many hours of usable sunlight your home will get a year, how many sq/ft of solar panels you’ll be able to use and most importantly if it’s a good investment for your home.



Noisy? Find out how noisy a neighborhood is before you look at purchasing there.  Check out this Noise Level Map






As you can see there are many positive signs for the Reno Real Estate market as we head into 2016.  When taking everything into account it is easy to see the upside potential to investing in a home while interest rates are still near historic lows and the effects of a major population increase have yet to drive housing to what could be record highs.  Overall there is little to suggest an upcoming bubble in our market but quite the opposite, we're seeing the possibility that we may be looking at the beginning of a major upswing in property values across the Truckee Meadows.

What are your feelings on the Northern Nevada Real Estate Market going into 2016?  Comment below!!   

1 Response to "2015 Reno and Sparks Market Recap "

Philip white wrote: Great to see Reno and Sparks rebounding after a
long resession.I retired and moved here in 2009 just after the down turn and things where looking really bleak for this area.

Posted on Monday, February 15th, 2016 at 10:33am.

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