All Blog Entries by Debbie Drummond

Found 390 blog entries published by Debbie Drummond.

Le Thai has been receiving a lot of publicity over the past several months as a hip, trendy place for the downtown crowd.  I have to admit we were a little skeptical about the food but on our recent visit, they delivered on all counts.  Starting with the location.  While they're on Fremont Street, they're just East of the Fremont Street Experience, which means you can find metered parking around the corner and don't have to deal with the tourist crowds.  Still close enough to go for a walk thru the Fremont Experience if you want to see the current video after dinner, but easy to get in and out if you're only going for Thai food.

We went for a late lunch with a friend who was visiting from Vancouver.  I would suggest avoiding the lunch hour rush,

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The Smith Center for the Performing Arts has wasted no time in launching their 2012 Concert Series.  The first concert was the star studded Gala opening which we reviewed earlier this week.  Last night we had the opportunity to see Michael Feinstein and his orchestra performing in the 2050 seat Reynolds Hall. On Sunday, we had been told the performance was SOLD OUT, but just for curiosity, we checked back on Tuesday and yes, there were two tickets available in the balcony section.  Would have preferred a little closer, but how the acoustics work in the balcony section is a good test of any major center for the performing arts.  As it turns out, there were more empty seats last night than we expected having been told it was sold out on Sunday.  I would

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Dancers from NV Ballet

The Smith Center for the Performing Arts has finally been completed and we were among the lucky ones who managed to get tickets to last night's opening gala which raised $470 million for the center.  It might seem odd that Las Vegas is making such a big fuss about a new performing arts center when we have so many shows and entertainment options available at the casino showrooms throughout the year.  But for those of us who moved here from cities like San Francisco, L.A., etc., where seeing a broadway play or hearing classical or jazz music performed live was routine, having this new center means we don't have to miss the culture we so enjoyed in our previous hometowns.

The Center itself is beautiful.  We'll cover more

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For almost a decade, the Las Vegas Housing Market has led the rest of the nation.  First, in the peak of the market years of 2004 and 2005, home prices in Las Vegas were going through the roof.  As the population of Las Vegas was growing during those peak years, investors came running in to grab their piece of the Las Vegas housing market, driving prices higher and higher.  Unfortunately, the fever spread to other markets like Florida where prices also escalated.

By 2007, the Las Vegas Housing Market had taken the lead in the other direction with slumping sales and growing foreclosures.  Again, the fever spread to other areas.  Now, we are a good five to six years into the collapse of the housing bubble and signs are popping up that the worst is behind

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New homes  for sale in Las Vegas are making the foreclosures and short sales look like  so-so deals in comparison to what you can get in new construction.  While 2011 was a record low year for new construction homes in Las Vegas, but with declining inventory of foreclosures in the MLS, and with homebuyers who are growing weary of the bidding wars and hurry up and wait mentality required for short sales, we predict this will be the year of the New Home Construction at least stabilizing if not showing signs of a rebound. 

New Homebuilders are beginning to pull permits and move forward with new communities.  We expect that the number of new construction homes that are sold this year will surprass last year's dismal numbers partially because the new home

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China Town Las Vegas is relatively new in comparison to the famed China Town in San Francisco, but it is growing and for us foodies, that's a good thing.  For the past several months, we've been hearing about a place on Jones at the edge of China Town in Las Vegas that is serving up some great, authentic Chinese food.  We finally had a chance to stop in for a late lunch and China Mama lived up to all the hype.

We started with the "Steamed Pork Buns", also referred to as "Soup Dumplings" because they're stuffed with ground pork and a little soup stock.  I'm a fairly skilled cook and have made my own Sui Mai, Fried Won Tons and other dim sum items before.  I cannot imagine how they manage to get the soup stock inside these delicate little won

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Investment properties in Las Vegas have been a driving force behind the high volume of homes that have sold over the past few years. The private investors who have purchased Las Vegas Residential Properties have stimulated the local economy as they've improved the homes they purchased.

The typical investor in today's market pays cash or at a minimum puts a sizable down payment into the purchase.  Lenders typically require investment properties to have a 20-30% down payment.  Slightly over half the home purchases in Las Vegas have been cash transactions over the past year.  This is a far cry from the investors who used 100% financing to put together a portfolio of properties at the peak of the market.

After purchasing the foreclosed or short sale

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"Where can I find homes for sale in Las Vegas" may sound like an odd question for a real estate agent who has been helping buyers and sellers with their real estate pursuits in Las Vegas since 2003.  Unfortunately, we are going through a constantly changing housing market here in Las Vegas.

At the peak of the market in 2004, the number of homes listed for sale declined to only 2400 at one point.  That was barely a month's supply.  At that point, builders began building a home on every piece of land they had available and buying more land.  By 2008, it was obvious that the market had turned, the number of homes for sale in Las Vegas was at least a year's worth of inventory and we didn't have the influx of six to seven thousand new residents relocating

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Las Vegas parks range from the smaller little grassy areas positioned throughout master-planned communities to larger State and Federal parks where one can go hiking, camping and exploring our desert.  One of the most colorful is also the oldest and largest State Park in Nevada.

The Valley of Fire State Park is only an hour from Las Vegas, located just East of the 15 Freeway on the way to the Lake Mead National Forest at Overton, NV.  Even for those who aren't into outdoor activities like hiking and camping, this park is worth the drive just for the scenery.

The park gets its name from the red sandstone formations and shifting sand dunes that developed during the age of dinosaurs 150 million years ago.  Although, the red sandstones are the

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If you've been following Home Values in Las Vegas Real Estate Market,you may have heard that one of the obstacles we face in helping our sellers get a decent price for their homes is the appraisal.  In today's Las Vegas Review Journal, there was an article regarding how " home values have declined for two years in a row" in Las Vegas.

We don't disagree with this article's statement that property values here have declined in 2010 and in 2011.  However, we do disagree with the appraiser they interviewed who feels that what a buyer is willing to pay for a property does not reflect market value.  As long ago as October 2009, I had written a blog post concerning how appraisals were killing our market.  Now, almost three years later, the situation has not

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