Posts Tagged ‘Featured’

Las Vegas: Is it really a dirty city?

Monday, July 11th, 2011

Question: Is Las Vegas really a dirty city?

Just last month, Yahoo! Travel published an article documenting America’s top 10 dirtiest cities. Guess who made the list? You got it. The city of Las Vegas came in at lucky number seven (oh the irony). It fell two notches from from spot number five in 2010’s poll but it’s an improvement. The break down as to why Las Vegas made the list wasn’t very detailed other than the fact that Vegas is the number one party town in America. How does that translate into dirty? Are we dirty as in hygiene or dirty as in morals? Hmmmmm.

One interesting tidbit mentioned in this article was that Sin City was number 1 for the most luxurious hotels. Again, I’m not sure how you can have the most luxurious hotels in the country and yet still be on the dirtiest cities list. These luxury hotels make certain that their immediate surroundings are pristine. Have you seen the Wynn’s landscape lately? What about the Bellagio? The incredible dancing fountain viewing area is always kept crystal clean.

If you head into some of the dirtier parts of town,  I am still not sure that Las Vegas should have made the list. Nearly every city in the county has dirty parts of town. Now if they’re referring to dust and dirt from all the construction, then maybe I can see it. Dust and dirt coat vehicles all year round.

Answer: No. I think Las Vegas just got a bad wrap on this one.

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The Great Las Vegas Real Estate Struggle

Wednesday, July 6th, 2011

Let’s just state the obvious: Real estate in Las Vegas is a little messy. We read forum after forum where homeowners are posing this question, “I can’t refinance my home, I can’t sell my home and my mortgage will be too high for me to pay this year what should I do?” Therein lies the great Las Vegas Real Estate Struggle.

We know that a large percentage of homeowners are upside down in their homes. Many of them greedily took out large equity lines that made the situation worse. Let’s not forget there were those who did in fact make wise purchases who too are in a dilemma. As housing prices continue to fall and are now lower than nearly any other city, the home values are not there and there is no room to refinance. The lending guidelines have become strict again and even if they weren’t THERE’S STILL NO VALUE! Many homes are worth less than half of what they were purchased for.

In most of these forums, the comments read “suck it up” “get a job” “you signed the papers” “short sale it” “rent it.” A short sale? Don’t think that just because one sells short that they are out of the clear. The remaining balance doesn’t just disappear. Many cannot pay on the remainder. Rent you say? That may be a valid option IF you can find a renter because everyone is doing this and the rent rates are highly competitive. Ugh. It’s a mess.

Even in the midst of a big mess, mortgage companies do want to work with the homeowners whether with forbearance agreements or setting up a payment plan that will work until something better can be arranged. A recent article by Yahoo! talked about banks cutting the principal balance on mortgages that were high risk such as the deadly Pay Option Arm. Who knows? Maybe yours will be cut or maybe they’ll just work with you through the mess. Regardless, the struggle is real and the struggle exists for the wise and the foolish, the rich and the poor. No one seems to be exempt from this one.

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Las Vegas Homes: The Gap Between New and Old

Monday, June 27th, 2011

No, we’re not talking about the age difference between the new residents and the old ones. We are talking about the HUGE gap between the prices of new Las Vegas homes and old Las Vegas homes. The numbers are astounding and most likely quite telling as to why the new home market is neither attractive nor competitive right now.

Just to clarify, our definition of a new home is one that has been recently constructed and has yet to be owned or occupied. We randomly selected three websites of local new home builders. Here’s what we found.

  • Builder 1: In the move-in ready section there is a 3300 square foot home in Nevada Trails for $372,100.
  • Builder 2: In the standing inventory there are 2043-2522 square foot homes in Anthem starting at $169,490.
  • Builder 3: In the quick move-in homes there are 2400-3039 square foot homes in Mountain’s Edge starting at $219,900.

As of today the median new home price is around $210,000. And here’s the kicker. The median previously owned home (old) price is almost half that amount, around $110,000. Wow! The gap in between is a gaping one. Even in 2006 when the housing market was in good condition, the gap was $43,000. It is no wonder that new home builders are downsizing or even closing shop. They just can’t compete.

What will it take for the gap to narrow? Well, most likely new home prices aren’t going to drop to the level of previously owned homes, but there will come a day when the old homes will rise back to a more realistic level, but that’s going to take time. Foreclosures and short sales will keep the prices low. Once those start clearing out, we will again see an increase in old home prices and that gaping hole will slowly become smaller.

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Sahara Las Vegas Liquidation Sale: Buy a Little History

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

The grand Sahara Hotel and Casino on the Las Vegas Strip closed it’s doors at the end of last month after being a hub of historic activity for 59 years. They just don’t make ‘em like they used to anymore.

Starting tomorrow, June 16th 2011 the Sahara will reopen to sell pieces of it’s rich history. For 60 days or until the place is empty, the doors will be open to Las Vegas real estate residents, visitors and businesses alike.

Word was spread all over the country especially to companies in the hotel and casino business and word on the street is there will be people from all over the country coming to town to take advantage of this incredible sale.

From fountains to the front desk, bar stools to blackjack tables, it’s all for sale. With 1,700 furnished guest rooms, there will be much to choose from. If you don’t want bedroom items, there were restaurants galore inside which gives you another hundred thousand items to choose from. Are you a chef? All kitchen equipment must go too. Chances are you’ll find something – a deck of cards maybe? For the most part if it was in the Sahara and can be sold, it will be EXCEPT for the roller coaster.

The Details:

Sale Starts: Thursday, June 16th 2011
Time: Monday – Saturday 10am-7pm
Sunday Noon-5pm
Duration: 60 days or until everything is gone
Admission: $10 a person

For more information including a summary of items for sale and purchase information, visit the National Content Liquidators website.

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The Best Las Vegas Burger Joint

Friday, June 10th, 2011

This entry is dedicated to those hearty, juicy burgers that are found only at a Las Vegas burger joint. So many restaurants in town make a good burger (like the Roadrunner Saloon with their Western Burger), but we’re just talking about the ones that sell burgers and claim to have the best beef on a bun with fixin’s.

Print it out and check them off as you go. We only suggest not doing it all one day.

  1. BLT Burger (inside the Mirage):  Good beer, juicy burger and a 180 degree view of the city. Kobe usually equals pricy.
  2. Burger Bar:  Fine burger dining inside the Mandalay Bay. A high end burger.
  3. Cheese Burger (inside Planet Hollywood):  Head to the islands and try the cheese burger.
  4. Fatburger:  “The biggest, juiciest hamburgers anyone has ever seen.” I believe it.
  5. Five Guys:  2 locations in Las Vegas. They sold 350,000 burgers nationwide in 2010. Fresh and filling. Steak style fry lovers will love this joint.
  6. In-N-Out Burger:  Fresh ingredients, no freezer on the premises. This one has won over my heart and my palate.
  7. Johnny Rockets:  “The Original Hambuger.” Need we say more?
  8. Le Burger Brasserie: Oui, C’est in the Paris Hotel. The Kobe burger might just be the most expensive in town.
  9. LBS Burger (inside Red Rock Casino): Cool saloon and bull head on the wall. Try the Smokehouse burger with white cheddar.
  10. Smashburger:  4 locations in Las Vegas. They are the talk of the town with the Sin City Smashburger. Don’t forget the fries.
  11. Stripburger:  If you like Café Ba Ba Reeba, you’ll like this restaurant they opened up inside Fashion Show Mall. Try the Bloody Mary burger. No stripping required.

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