Reno Housing Market Softens

The median price for existing homes in the Reno-Sparks area rose 8 percent to $345,000 in the first quarter of 2006 compared with last year, a new report said.

At the same time, the report by the Bureau of Business & Economic Research at the University of Nevada, Reno said it took a median of 85 days to sell a home, 37 percent longer than a year ago - but in step with what's considered normal.

"This is the sort of soft landing that everybody has been talking about," said Brian Kaiser, an analyst at UNR's Nevada Small Business Development Center. "It's finally hit the market."

Overall, the number of sales made through the Northern Nevada Multiple Listing Service fell to 917 in the first quarter, down 27 percent from the same period in 2005, the report said.

Reno boasts the most expensive homes in the metropolitan area, with a median of $404,500, up 9 percent from 2005. Sparks showed a 6 percent year-over-year rise to $329,000, while the North Valley's rose 5 percent to $280,000.