The Brookings Institute recently came out with a study likening Las Vegas to living in Chicago in the 1870's, and Los Angeles in the 1920's. To put it bluntly, you will not see very many opportunities like this in your lifetime to invest for the long term.
Also, there are so many other reasons to purchase a home, from tax advantages, to freedom of lifestyle, etc.
Lake Las Vegas is a strong long term investment. Nobody has a crystal ball, including Case Schiller or REO Fund Manager. I would be weary of anyone telling you "they know" what will happen in the market, especially over a narrow time frame like 2 to 3 years. What I can tell you is that as an investment manager, you make money when others are running away. A perfect example of this is the equity market in 2009 that rose roughly 50% while everyone was declaring capitalism dead.
My advice is if you truly love the home, and you would like to own a property, and you can comfortably fit this investment into your overall financial objectives, you could do a lot worse than Lake Las Vegas right now.
I don't like the "still vibrant and active"
let's face it...LLV is in trouble. The city of Henderson is trying to work with the development as water contracts are about to expire...Thus, reason enough for the golf courses to shut down as they were getting free use of water from the City and still not making a profit. They are looking to take BK and/or SELL...but, if no buyers are found this year the City of Henderson will take over and they will become public courses.
While they are waiting... they are not making any new improvements or keeping the place up as once before - just enough to not look like it is runnning down. I do see that the sparkle is gone and things are starting to become less than vibrant. Plus the services in the area are also lack luster at best. But, I see that changing around once the economy starts to come back or the City takes over.
Now for the good news...The SC index perdicts only about 10-16% more of a drop in prices for the area.
If the home is is perfect condition --- go for it. If not, wait till around the 200k range. Forget those before the market crashed prices it last sold for. Also, the HOA it has now is about to tank and the City of Henderson will more than likely take over and remove the HOA fees except for south shore where the HOA will continue.
The neighborhoods themselves are still well keep and the homes will come into line based on the size of the homes. I wouldn't think the City of Henderson would let the development or community dissapear. They will put in the work to make this a fantanstic palce to live. LLV put a lot of money in the coffers for the City.
I do see this area 10-20% higher valued than the rest of the valley in the future....enough to make up for any drop you may see in the next 3-5 years.
Get a good agent and don't pay over $100 dollars a square foot out there!
The prices have dropped significantly, but having a unique location with some properties also offering strip views, I believe this area will recover. In fact, there are whispers that a private organization is already making overatures to purchase one of the golf courses. You can read about the area here http://www.lvrj.com/business/50575237.html
I think this community deserves your consideration. Let me know if I can assist you in buying in this outstanding location.
Rosen & Company West
I understand your concern. Lake Las Vegas has been hit extremely hard by the slowdown in the market. There were stories that there could be a problem with the pipes that run under the lake and that could lead to the lake loosing all it's water. That issue has thankfully been resolved and the repairs needed are being done. The two most recent issues are that two of the three golf courses have been closed down. The courses are still being watered and maintained, but the current owner is looking to sell the courses.
The Ritz Carlton and one other hotel there have recently declared bankrutcy.
The community itself is undeniable beautiful, but the home owners association fee's are very high. Many homes there have three different dues that need to be paid. I personally feel that this community will be fine eventually, but it will be a while before things out there do recover. I do not think you have to worry about the community vanishing or drying up. There has been millions or dollars spent out there and there is still plenty of land left. There are also several celebrities that call Lake Las Vegas home. This community will eventually recover and be built out, it will just take the right developer with some vision and a new much lower cost basis to make this happen.
Let me know if I can be of any further assistance.