Our network

Home Builders Adapt to Tough Market

While many U.S. housing markets are seeing an increase in home sales, Las Vegas is still struggling. That's especially true for new home construction which has stiff competition from the flood of foreclosed homes for sale.

One local builder says the key to selling is adapting to buyer's changing needs.

There appears to be a shift in the consumer culture. Homebuyers concerned about both the economy and the environment are choosing smaller, less expensive and more energy efficient homes.

It's a trend that long-time Las Vegas homebuilder American West also noticed and it says it's Lexington community in Highlands Ranch represents the idea that less can be more.

The Lexington community in the far southwest caters to a new breed of new homebuyer. According to the latest census data, new home sizes are shrinking considerably.

Consumers are becoming more practical in these tough economic times.

Foreclosure Express A Big Draw For House Hunters

Las Vegas has become a Mecca for foreclosed homes and real estate agents along with banks are doing whatever they can to sell them to potential homebuyers -- like the Foreclosure Express.

Riders look at homes with prices ranging from $100,000 to $300,000. The homes were all in great shape, despite the misconception foreclosed homes are trashed.

The Realtors who run Foreclosure Express say this is the perfect way to get folks familiar with what's out there on the market. You'll find prices are reduced as much as 60-percent, and that's great news for those looking to buy.

"I have been coming out here since 2001 and right now these homes are a really good value the cost price ratio terrific," said passenger Tony Patire.

"They put together a great plan -- four houses we've seen in are great shape. Prices are definitely in ballpark of what we're looking at," said Byron Irvy.

Foreclosure Express runs about every week.

Foreclosures Driving Down Price of Traditional Home Sales

Foreclosed homes bring down the average value of homes in every neighborhood. So many homeowners who'd like to sell are left wondering just how much their homes are really worth.

Take a look around your neighborhood and you'll likely find a foreclosed home. That has many homeowners wondering just how much their property is worth.

"If you have a lot of foreclosures and short sales going on in your particular market, then your value goes down," said Mike Brunson with Ascent Appraisal.

Right now, it's a buyers market. But what if you are trying to sell your home? Even if you've always been on time with your payments and have never defaulted on your mortgage, foreclosures are affecting you, "The best advice, if you don't have to sell, don't sell."

Brunson has been an appraiser since the mid 90's.

Texas Station Job Fair Draws Thousands

New unemployment numbers for Nevada are going to be released later this week and they aren't expected to be good. Because of the rising unemployment, thousands of people showed up to a job fair at Texas Station.

The event, sponsored by Las Vegas Jobs, hoped to match employers with potential employees. They expected over 5,000 people to turn out.

One of the job seekers lost her job in December. "It was disheartening at first, but then I have to stop and think when God closes a door, he always opens a window. So there is something out there and I have to have patience and wait," said Shirley Iodence.

Ken Gregg is in luck because there are a lot of sales jobs available with the 38 companies at the fair, "I dress to impress. I'm like a little pitbull, if you let me out of the cage, I'm going to get a sale."

Other open positions include attorneys, vice presidents, chefs, models, IT managers, and massage therapists just to name a few.

Baby Orphaned After Apparent Murder Suicide

Police say the man who wounded a Las Vegas police officer before killing himself and his girlfriend over the weekend was a fugitive in a California slaying case.

Thirty-two-year-old Allen Meister was wanted for murder in Long Beach. The couple's 8-month-old child was left unharmed, but an orphan in the murder-suicide on Saturday morning.

Police spokesman Jacinto Rivera says officers were called to the scene by a woman in Long Beach, Calif. who told police that her sister was being battered by a suspected murderer.

After officers arrived, a woman and the man carried the baby out of the home. The woman did not have a chance to escape because the man was holding a gun on her. As an officer retrieved the child, he was shot in the arm.

Rivera says police believe the suspect then shot the woman before turning the gun on himself. The identities of those involved were not released.

Board Plans to Implement School Rezoning

Parents packed Tuesday night's school board meeting, angry about the district's rezoning plans. They were hoping to change the board members' minds, but after hours of debate, it didn't happen.

Parents stormed out of the board room late Tuesday evening. In all, nearly 13,000 students district-wide will be forced to attend different schools next year, despite passionate pleas from parents.

Parents lined up and sounded off. They want their kids to stay at the school they're already zoned for.

"I've spent many hours trying to understand how something so illogical to me makes sense to anybody else," said Mary Saladino.

Students don't want to move either, "Out of my entire circle of friends, inside the band and out, I am the only one being forced to leave Coronado."

The district says reworking school boundaries is necessary because some campuses are overcrowded and others are under capacity.

Las Vegas Museum Closing

After 59 years, the Las Vegas Art Museum is getting ready to close its doors. Recent economic woes have dramatically reduced the amount of donations to the museum, and now they say they'll have to close their doors.

The museum will close with the Sahara West Library this Saturday, and for the first time, members don't know when they will re-open.

Four years ago the museum turned its focus to contemporary art, displaying exhibits like L.A. Now, a showing of about 20 different artist offering everything from paintings to sculptures.

Although the museum has a thousand members and many devoted members of the community, they recently announced the current economic situation has forced them to close their doors, but with a hope it will not be forever.