House flipping is always hottest when home prices are nearing a peak. That is not the case right now nationally, and so flipping has remained pretty stable overall ... with two very glaring exceptions. Las Vegas and Miami. Sound familiar? They should.
These two markets may well have been the poster children for the flip trade during the last housing boom, and they both paid dearly for it, with homes losing more than half their value when the markets inevitably crashed.
House flipping is generally defined as buying and selling a home within the same calendar year. During the mid-2000s flipping was easier than ever for several reasons. Prices were rising with seemingly no ceiling, builders were putting out more product than anyone could use and even a dog could get a mortgage with no money down. That is not the case now. Not even close, and yet flipping is back in certain spots.
At the peak of the last housing bubble, flipping made up 8.6 percent of all home sales nationally, according to Trulia. That share is now down to about 5 percent and holding steady. In Las Vegas, however, house flips are making up 10.4 percent of home sales, the highest in the nation, and the share is rising. Las Vegas flipping is now at about 80 percent of its 15-year peak.