Home Construction Picking Up in Las Vegas Valley - 8 News NOW

Home Construction Picking Up in Las Vegas Valley

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LAS VEGAS -- The U.S. Census Bureau released new figures Friday showing new home construction is up by nearly 6 percent nationwide. In Southern Nevada, the housing industry is starting to make a steady recovery.

New home permits in Clark County are up 68 percent from six months ago. While Southern Nevada isn't anywhere near the construction levels it was during the building boom, construction is happening around the valley.

A quick survey shows desert lots being turned into new housing developments. One new subdivision is going up in Southern Highlands.

"We're seeing a real surge, and probably more than we thought we were going to see," said Rocky Cochran, the vice president of construction operations for Pardee Homes and the president of Southern Nevada Home Builders Association.

He's a third-generation home builder and especially proud of Pardee Home's Durango Ranch Community.

"The Durango Ranch product is very open, you can see. It features large great rooms," he said. 

Cochran seen the ups and downs of the housing market.

"Those buyers who might have been sitting on the fence ready to get into the market, I think now we're seeing that they are making the plunge."

The U.S. Census Bureau says housing starts are up 5.9 percent in July. The National Association of Home Builders and Wells Fargo Bank report that U.S. home builder confidence is at its highest level in almost eight years.

"Last year, year to date, we probably did about 5,000 new home permits. And this year, we're probably going to do about 7,000," Cochran said.

With Southern Nevada's housing supply still too tight to meet the demand, more home buyers are turning to builders.

"There's really an incentive to buy out there, right now. I think the historical low interest rates are still low. I think the cost per square footage is still historically low," he said.

The Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors reports home prices have been rising for 18 months and there is no sign of that changing last month.

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