You Bet: Vegas, other former high-flying markets still lag

        For cities popular with retirees, such as Naples, FL, the recession of 2008 came for a five-year visit, but a solid recovery may have arrived to stay. Naples prices that were inflated before the crash have now recovered back to their formerly lofty levels.
        A few other areas popular with retirees have not been so lucky, and they may represent significant buying opportunities for bargain hunters. According to Money magazine’s list of “10 Cities Where the Housing Crash Still Looms Largest,” the vast majority of homes in the Las Vegas, Tucson, Ft. Lauderdale and Daytona Beach metro areas have not reached pre-recession levels. In Las Vegas, for example, peak home values in the mid-2000s soared to over $306,000, but today’s current average home value is below $215,000.
        These are all warm weather venues, except for a winter month or two in Vegas, featuring plenty of terrific golf communities whose home values are figured into the overall calculations. I did a quick scan of some properties for sale in Las Vegas area golf communities and fit didn't take long to find one nice looking single-family home of 3,134 square feet priced at barely more than $100 per square foot ($329,900 to be exact). Located in the gated community known as San Niccolo, it features 4 bedrooms and 3 baths and is located beside the Southern Highlands Golf Club south of the city and its famed strip. It may be an extreme example of bargains in Las Vegas, but finding other bargains in the area should be less than a roll of the dice.