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Austin Board of REALTORS® releases expanded February 2017 Central Texas Housing Market Report

AUSTIN, Texas – March 16, 2017 – The February 2017 Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS® showed a slowdown in single-family home sales growth throughout the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) in February 2017, indicating that the Central Texas housing market is beginning to normalize to more stable market conditions.

Brandy Guthrie, 2017 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­® commented, “The Central Texas housing market is just now beginning to catch up to itself after years of unprecedented sales growth. It’s important to remember that current figures are being compared to very strong housing market activity in 2016, so a decline in home sales growth does not automatically mean that the market is softening.”

Mark Sprague, State Director of Information Capital for Independence Title, agreed: “Low inventory levels, high home prices and slowing job growth across the region are preventing a resurgence of the record-breaking numbers experienced the last two years, but overall the region’s housing market remains very strong. The Central Texas housing market is normalizing into a more stable market.”

Single-family home sales in the Austin-Round Rock MSA were essentially flat in February 2017, increasing 0.9 percent year-over-year to 1,829 home sales. Single-family home sales declined from February 2016 in many cities surrounding Austin, with the exceptions of Buda (up 30 percent year-over-year to 26 home sales), Cedar Park (up 20.7 percent year-over-year to 70 home sales), Leander (up 8.8 percent year-over-year to 62 home sales) and Austin (up 6.4 percent year-over-year to 617 home sales).

“Home sales growth in the city of Austin is currently being driven by the sales of single-family homes priced $750,000 and higher, particularly within the luxury housing market,” added Guthrie.

The median price for single-family homes in the five-county MSA rose 6.5 percent to $287,000 in February 2017. During the same time frame, the monthly housing inventory for single-family homes in the Austin-Rock MSA increased 0.1 months to 2.1 months.

“The Federal Reserve’s decision to raise U.S. interest rates yesterday could dissuade some local homeowners from listing their homes on the market, or potential homeowners from buying a home,” commented Sprague. “Even with this increase, however, there’s still no better time to buy than now. Interest rates are likely only to increase over the next few years. Central Texans will not be able to buy a home for as low of a price and as low of an interest rate as they can today.”

Guthrie concluded: “Whether you’re planning to buy or sell a home, the Central Texas housing market is complex and moves quickly. Working with a Central Texas REALTOR® in advance will give you the expert local market knowledge you need to be fully prepared to make an offer on or sell your home.”

Central Texas housing market starts 2017 strong with gains in home sales volume, prices

Austin Board of REALTORS® releases expanded January 2017 Central Texas Housing Market Report

AUSTIN, Texas – Feb. 16, 2017 – Single-family home sales posted strong gains throughout the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) in January, according to a new and expanded Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS®.

Brandy Guthrie, 2017 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­® commented, “Consecutive years of strong housing demand and sales growth throughout Central Texas have significantly changed housing market conditions in Austin and the surrounding region. The radius of local market areas with critically low housing inventory levels has expanded out from Austin into surrounding counties, shifting the price range of available homes in local communities upward.”

Single-family home sales in the Austin-Round Rock MSA increased 7.0 percent year-over-year in January 2017 to 1,549 home sales. In the city of Austin, single-family home sales jumped 9.8 percent annually to 469 home sales during the same time frame.

Housing inventory levels remained largely flat across the Austin-Round Rock MSA in January 2017, increasing 0.1 months to 2.0 months of inventory. Housing inventory levels in Williamson County and other markets are now on pace with housing inventory levels in the City of Austin, which remained unchanged in January 2017 at 1.4 months of inventory. The inventory of single-family homes priced under $250,000 is now less than 1.0 months of inventory in many local markets.

Area home prices continued to climb at a steady pace in January 2017. In the Austin-Round Rock MSA, median home price increased 9.8 percent year-over-year to $279,990, while the median price in the city of Austin increased 2.3 percent year-over-year to $312,000.

“The range of home prices available in local market areas are slowly trending upward, changing the local profile of what homes and price ranges are considered ‘affordable’,” added Guthrie. “Single-family homes priced for entry-level homebuyers are increasingly harder to find throughout the region.”

Starting this month, the Austin Board of REALTORS® has expanded its Central Texas Housing Market Report into a 12-page, regional report exploring housing market statistics and trends throughout the region. To view the full report in its entirety, including January 2017 statistics for the Austin-Round Rock MSA; Hays, Travis and Williamson counties; and the city of Austin, please visit ABoR.com/StatsJan17.

Guthrie concluded, “Housing affordability and development policy decisions made in Austin have a regional ripple effect. It’s increasingly important for area homebuyers and sellers to know not only their local housing market conditions, but how their local housing market is being shaped by the region’s growth at large.”

Central Texas housing market breaks sales record in 2016, shows signs of normalization in 2017

Austin Board of REALTORS® releases December 2016 & Year-End 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report

AUSTIN, Texas – Jan. 18, 2017 – The December & Year-End 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by Austin Board of REALTORS® reported 2016 as another record-breaking year for Central Texas home sales, while also showing signs that the housing market could begin to normalize in 2017.

“The Central Texas housing market is slowly beginning to align with long-term historical trends. Homes are spending more time on the market and the pace of both home sales and price growth is slowing,” said Brandy Guthrie, 2017 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­®. “This normalization does not necessarily mean a weakening housing market, but a return to less aggressive market conditions.”

Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)

More than 29,000 (29,569) single-family homes were sold in the five-county MSA in 2016, a 3.9 percent increase from 2015 and an all-time high for annual home sales volume. Median price for single-family homes rose 7.2 percent from 2015 to $284,000, while home sales dollar volume jumped 9.1 percent from 2015 to $10,456,084,996. Homes spent an average of 50 days on the market in 2016, an increase of two days from 2015.

Housing inventory levels remained unchanged from year-end 2015 to year-end 2016, ending December 2016 at 2.0 months of inventory. This is two-thirds less than the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University’s benchmark of 6.5 months as a balanced housing market. In December 2016, single-family home sales rose 1.9 percent year-over-year to 2,373 home sales, while median price rose 6.9 percent to $290,000.

“While the region’s job growth have slowed over the last few years, overall the Central Texas economy and housing market continue to be strong,” said Mark Sprague, State Director of Information Capital for Independence Title. “The 2017 housing market will likely outpace last year’s levels, but at a less robust margin. Recent increases in mortgage rates could continue the current pace of home sales growth into the first part of the year.”

City of Austin

Austin single-family home sales volume grew slightly in 2016, increasing 1.7 percent from 2015 to 9,049 home sales. Austin home prices rose at a more moderate pace than in years prior, with median price increasing 5.8 percent to $340,000 during the same time frame. Active listings jumped 16.5 percent annually to 1,461 listings and homes spent five more days on the market in 2016 than in 2015, or an average of 41 days.

In December 2016, city of Austin home sales declined 7.8 percent to 705 single-family home sales, while median price rose 9.2 percent to $355,000. Monthly housing inventory increased 0.1 months year-over-year to 1.6 months of inventory. Homes spent an average of 50 days on the market in December 2016, an increase of five days from December 2015.

Guthrie concluded: “The local market areas with critically low housing inventory levels have grown dramatically over the last year, and our region’s housing market will never be balanced until there is a greater influx of housing stock of all types and price points. It will take time to rebuild Central Texas’ low inventory levels, and identifying smarter housing development policies for CodeNEXT in 2017 is the first step to generating more housing inventory in the years to come.”

Travis County

Single-family home sales volume in Travis County increased 3.3 percent in 2016 to 14,621 home sales, while median price increased 6.5 percent from 2015 to $330,000. Homes spent an average of 49 days on the market in 2016, three days more than in 2015. In December 2016, housing inventory increased 0.1 months year-over-year to 2.0 months. In the same month, single-family home sales declined 2.4 percent year-over-year to 1,160 home sales and median price increased 6.4 percent year-over-year to $335,000.

Williamson County

Single-family home sales volume in Williamson County increased 2.5 percent in 2016 to 10,102 home sales, while median price increased 6.2 percent from 2015 to $260,000. Homes spent the same amount of time on the market in 2016 as in 2015, or an average of 48 days. In December 2016, housing inventory remained unchanged from December 2015 at 1.8 months. Single-family home sales increased 1.7 percent year-over-year in December 2016 to 791 home sales, while median price rose 5.1 percent year-over-year to $265,000.

Single-family home sales surge across Central Texas region in November

Austin Board of REALTORS® releases November 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report

AUSTIN, Texas – Dec. 15, 2016 – Single-family home sales experienced double-digit growth across the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) in November, according to the November 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS®.

Aaron Farmer, 2016 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­® said, “This end-of-year surge in home sales is an unusual and welcome surprise to what’s typically the lowest months for Central Texas home sales volume during the year. Home sales throughout 2016 continue to be fueled by our region’s steady population growth. At the current pace, 2016 will likely turn out to be another record year for Central Texas home sales.”

Single-family home sales in the Austin-Round Rock MSA jumped 15.8 percent year-over-year to 2,055 home sales in November 2016, while home sales in the city of Austin jumped 13.7 percent annually to 656 home sales. This double-digit growth was evident in Hays, Travis and Williamson Counties as well in November 2016, with single-family home sales experiencing annual gains of 24.2 percent, 11.3 percent, and 14.7 percent, respectively.

“Uncertainty regarding the election led to a relatively sluggish economy in August and September. It appeared that many buyers were waiting to see how the election turned out before deciding to buy,” said Mark Sprague, state director of information capital for Independence Title. “Rising interest rates are also likely encouraging more people to buy a home. Millennial homebuyers, who comprise 51 percent of the Central Texas market, have never experienced an interest rate greater than four percent and thus could be motivated to buy sooner.”

Home prices continued to climb in November 2016, but at a slower pace than in previous months. In the Austin-Round Rock MSA, median home price increased 7.0 percent year-over-year to $294,245, while median price in the city of Austin increased 4.0 percent year-over-year to $342,000. The exception was Williamson County, which experienced a 12.1 percent annual increase in median price to $275,000.

Housing inventory levels remained largely flat throughout the Central Texas region in November 2016. In the Austin-Round Rock MSA, monthly housing inventory levels remained flat at 2.3 months. In the city of Austin, housing inventory crept up 0.1 months year-over-year to 1.9 months. The Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University cites that a balance of housing supply and demand is achieved when housing supply levels are between 6.0 and 6.5 months of inventory.

“Housing inventory will continue to be one of the biggest challenges facing the Central Texas housing market in 2017,” added Farmer. “In some local markets such as Round Rock, inventory levels have fallen below 1.0 months, which means that available housing stock is practically non-existent. It’s critical that our cities’ leaders begin to look at housing affordability not as just an Austin issue, but an issue affecting our entire region.”

Single-family home sales rise in the city of Austin, decline across Central Texas region in October

Austin Board of REALTORS® releases October 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report

AUSTIN, Texas – Nov. 17, 2016 – Single-family home sales jumped within the city of Austin but declined across the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) in October, according to the October 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS®.

Aaron Farmer, 2016 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­® said, “Home sales typically slow down in the fall, so it’s encouraging to see a surge of sales within Austin’s city limits last month. Much of this growth is being driven by new home sales in the city, which are up nearly 38 percent year to date. Homes within Austin’s city limits continue to be in strong demand, despite having a significantly higher price point than housing stock in surrounding areas.”
After relatively flat growth throughout much of the year, single-family home sales in the city of Austin jumped 7.5 percent year-over-year to 703 home sales in October 2016. Median price increased 6.5 percent year-over-year to $332,250, while housing inventory increased 0.2 months to 2.2 months. Active listings increased 11.3 percent year-over-year to 1,667 listings during the same time frame, while homes spent slightly more time on the market, or an average of 42 days.

Conversely, single-family home sales fell across the Austin-Round Rock MSA in October 2016, declining 3.1 percent year-over-year to 2,219 home sales. Median price rose 9.3 percent from October 2015 to $279,000, while housing inventory edged up 0.1 months year-over-year to 2.6 months of inventory. Single-family homes spent an average of 51 days on the market in October 2016, two days more than October 2015.

The largest annual decline in home sales in October 2016 was in Williamson County, where single-family home sales fell 12.2 percent year-over-year to 744 home sales. The median price for single-family homes in Williamson County increased 7.1 percent year-over-year to $255,000, while housing inventory fell 0.1 months from October 2015 to 2.2 months of inventory. Active listings for single-family homes in Williamson County remained flat in October 2016 at 1,859 active listings, an increase of 0.5 percent from October 2015.

“Williamson County’s unprecedented housing demand continues to keep housing inventory at record low levels, despite having one of the strongest housing development activities in the region,” added Farmer.

Vaike O’Grady, Austin Regional Director for Metrostudy, agreed: “An extraordinary number of homes are under construction in Williamson County, but nearly everything that’s going on the ground is being sold. In the city of Austin, single-family housing growth is concentrated in a few subdivisions, such as the Mueller community.”

Metrostudy’s recent 3Q16 survey of the Austin housing market showed that housing starts and closing throughout the Austin area are at their highest level since 2006. Builders are attempting to fill the growing affordability gap by offering smaller floor plans and fewer features as well as a greater number of condominiums and townhomes, but primarily only in areas outside the city.

“Austin homes command a premium, so you don’t see a lot of lower-priced housing options within the city. Most new single-family homes being offered in the city of Austin are priced at $400,000 or higher,” added O’Grady.

“Housing development is at the center of solving Austin’s growing affordability crisis, but it has to be the right kind of housing being developed – a variety of housing stock at all price points and where it’s needed most,” concluded Farmer. “This can only happen once a new Land Development Code is put in place. The Austin Board of REALTORS® urges our city’s leaders to make reworking Austin’s Land Development Code their top priority.”

Home sales dip in Austin, increase across Central Texas in September 2016

Austin Board of REALTORS® releases September 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report

AUSTIN, Texas – Oct. 18, 2016 – Single-family home sales increased across the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), but declined throughout the City of Austin in September, according to the September 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS®.
Aaron Farmer, 2016 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­® said, “Housing is at the center of all economic development. Nowhere is this more evident than at the intersection of housing affordability and mobility. As more and more homebuyers look outside of Austin’s city limits to find an affordable home, our region’s infrastructure is increasingly strained and the overall costs of homeownership rise because of the increased cost to commute.”
In September, less than one in three homes sold in the Austin-Round Rock MSA and less than one in five homes sold in the Central Texas region were sold within Austin’s city limits. City of Austin single-family home sales declined 4.5 percent year-over-year in September 2016 to 746 home sales, while home sales across the Austin-Round Rock MSA increased 1.3 percent year-over-year to 2,576 home sales. Across the Central Texas region, single-family home sales were up 6.1 percent from September 2015.

During the same time frame, the median price for City of Austin homes increased 10.6 percent year-over-year to $345,000. Across the five-county MSA, the median price for single-family homes was $275,250, an increase of 7.5 percent from September 2015.

In June, the Austin Board of REALTORS® announced its support for the City of Austin’s $720M mobility bond proposition, applauding the proposed investment in major corridor improvements, plans for regional roadways  that will bring immediate congestion relief and implementing pedestrian pathways that enable safe routes to schools for all school-age Austinites.

“Austin’s traffic congestion worsens every day. Our city cannot afford to keep putting off much-needed infrastructure improvements while waiting for the ‘perfect plan’ to come along,” commented Mayor Adler. “As mobility throughout our region is impacted, so is the quality of life for all Austinites and our reputation as a place to live, work and do business. The time to act is now.”

“Both Austin’s current housing stock and infrastructure are not sustainable for our region’s projected population growth, which is expected to double by 2040,” added Farmer.

In September, housing inventory throughout the Austin-Round Rock MSA increased 0.1 months year-over-year to 2.7 months of inventory, far below the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University’s estimation of 6.5 months in which the supply and demand for homes are balanced. Due to increasing housing demand outside of Austin, housing inventory levels in Williamson County are now equivalent to inventory levels in the City of Austin. In September, the housing inventory for both Williamson County and the City of Austin was 2.4 months.

Single-family homes in surrounding markets also continued to spend less time on the market in September 2016. In Williamson County, homes spent three less days on the market, or an average of 44 days. In Hays County, homes spent an average of 48 days on the market, one day less than September 2015.

“Austin has the opportunity next month to vote for meaningful, much-needed transportation funding that can finally bring congestion relief to our region,” concluded Farmer. “Solutions for Austin’s transportation challenges cannot be delayed any longer. The Austin Board of REALTORS® urges Austin residents to vote “yes” for the $720M Mobility Bond on Nov. 8.”

Austin-Round Rock home sales, prices rise in August 2016

Austin Board of REALTORS® releases August 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report

AUSTIN, Texas – Sept. 15, 2016 – The Central Texas summer selling season ended on a strong note in August 2016, with annual gains in both single-family home sales and prices, according to the August 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS®.
Aaron Farmer, 2016 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­® said, “Austin, and now the Central Texas region at large, continues to be a magnet for jobs and new businesses across multiple industries. This continues to keep housing demand at an all-time high and inventory at near-record lows despite strong housing development and a greater number of listings on the market.”

Single-family home sales rose 5.3 percent year-over year to 2,985 home sales across the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) in August 2016, while median home price increased 9.4 percent year-over-year to $289,990. Housing stock across the five-county area continued to be constricted and sell rapidly in August 2016, with monthly housing inventory increasing 0.1 months year-over-year to 2.8 months and average days on market remaining statistically unchanged from last year at 42 days.

The largest annual gain in home sales in August 2016 was in Hays County, where single-family home sales jumped 23.2 percent year-over-year to 377 home sales. This jump in home sales activity was driven by home sales in Buda and San Marcos, where single-family home sales experienced of annual gains of 45.8 percent, 67.9 percent and 20.9 percent, respectively. The median price for single-family homes in Hays County increased 7.8 percent to $253,250, while housing inventory increased 0.4 months to 3.3 months of inventory during the same time frame.

Conversely, single-family home sales in Williamson County were flat in August 2016, increasing 0.7 percent year-over-year to 1,035 home sales. Single-family home sales decreased slightly in all of Williamson County’s major cities, with the exception of Leander, which experienced a 3.6 percent increase in home sales in August 2016. The median price for single-family homes in Williamson County increased 6.6 percent to $261,250 while housing inventory increased 0.1 months to 2.5 months of inventory during the same time frame.

Single-family home sales also remained flat in the City of Austin in August 2016, increasing 0.8 percent year-over-year to 868 home sales. Median price increased 10.3 percent year-over-year to $356,276, while housing inventory increased 0.2 months to 2.3 months. Single-family homes spent an average of 35 days on the market in August 2016, two days more than August 2015.

“As housing inventory remains constrained across the Central Texas region and demand remains high, home sales growth is increasingly impacted by new home development,” explained Farmer. “This is especially true in Williamson and Hays Counties, where housing demand and development activity are strongest. As new housing stock becomes available, it’s quickly scooped up by homebuyers.”

Eldon Rude, principal for 360° Real Estate Analytics, added: “The pace of housing development continues to increase in Central Texas, but new home prices are significantly higher. Due to rising land, development and entitlement costs, there are now only a few areas throughout the region where new homes can be built under $250,000. In most areas, entry-level homes are now often priced in the mid $200s and a majority of home starts are priced in the high $200s or more.”

Home sales volume declines in Central Texas for the second time in 2016, prices continue to rise

Austin Board of REALTORS® releases July 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report

AUSTIN, Texas – Aug. 18, 2016 – Single-family home sales volume declined in the Central Texas area for the second time in 2016, according to the July 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS®. Across the Central Texas region, 4,230 single-family homes were sold in July 2016, a decrease of 3.1 percent compared to July 2015.

“When it comes to sales volume, we’ve grown very used to seeing year-over-year increases every single month, but it’s important to remember that 2015 had the strongest summer selling season in the region’s history,” said Aaron Farmer, 2016 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­®. “The value of Central Texas real estate has continued to increase, which is good news for homeowners, but those rising prices could start to have a cooling effect on sales volume in the market amidst growing affordability challenges.”
The median price for single-family home sales in Central Texas was $260,000 in July 2016, a 6.1 percent increase compared to the same month of the prior year. Over the same time period, Central Texas inventory levels were statistically unchanged at 3.6 months and homes spent an average of 48 days on the market, three days less than July 2015.

A closer look at regional home sales among various price classes showed drastically different housing market conditions between the lower- and higher-end segments of the market. Across the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) in July 2016, inventory for homes priced between $100,000 and $200,000 was virtually non-existent at less than one month of inventory. Conversely, homes priced above $400,000 had more than four months of inventory, with homes priced $1M and higher well within a buyer’s market at more than 13 months of inventory.
Farmer continued, “The City of Austin’s high development costs make it virtually impossible for homes under $250,000 to be built within city limits. In return, this pent-up demand is driving home prices up in surrounding areas in where lower-priced housing stock can be built. The result is a catch-22 of housing development, where the homes that can be developed are largely in price classes where both prices and inventory are higher, while the much-needed housing stock under $250,000 goes un-replenished.”

Focusing on the five-county Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), single-family home sales dropped 4.9 percent year-over-year to 2,900 home sales, while the median home price increased 5.6 percent to $285,000. Monthly housing inventory within the Austin-Round Rock MSA was 2.8 months in July 2016, statistically unchanged compared to the year prior.

“Home prices are at their highest level in history in the Austin-Round Rock MSA, and as a result more existing homeowners have been putting their homes on the market this year,” said Jonathan Smoke, chief economist at realtor.com®. “But by contrast, the Austin-Round Rock MSA remains hot relative to the U.S. In July, listings in Austin moved 20 days faster than the US overall and received 39 percent more views compared to the U.S. average on realtor.com®.”
Narrowing in on the City of Austin specifically, the median price hit $345,000 in July 2016, a 4.6 percent increase from the year prior, while home sales volume declined by 7.3 percent to 870 homes sold. Housing inventory rose from 2.1 months in July 2015 to 2.4 months in July 2016 and homes spent four more days on the market than the previous year.

Looking further north, the median price in Williamson County rose 6.6 percent annually to $262,000 and home sales volume decreased by 6.5 percent to 1,010 home sales. Homes spent two days fewer on the market in Williamson County and inventory decreased from 2.5 months of inventory in July 2015 to 2.4 months this year.

Austin-Round Rock home sales on pace to surpass 2015 record levels amidst affordability crisis

Austin Board of REALTORS® releases June 2016 & Mid-Year 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report

AUSTIN, Texas – July 15, 2016 – Single-family home sales and prices experienced strong gains throughout the Central Texas region in the first half of 2016, according to the June & Mid-Year 2016 Central Texas Housing Market Report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS®.

“Despite the ongoing housing shortage and affordability challenges impacting our region, population growth and housing demand continue to drive home sales upward,” said Aaron Farmer, 2016 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS­®. “The Austin-Round Rock housing market is on track to outpace 2015 market levels, which was a record-breaking year for home sales.”

Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)

Single-family home sales in the five-county Austin-Round Rock MSA rose 6.1 percent year-over-year to 14,482 home sales in the first half of 2016, while median price rose seven percent year-over-year to $282,000. Home listings also experienced gains in the first half of the year, with active listings increasing 6.6 percent to 5,290 listings, new listings rising 5.7 percent to 20,060 listings, and pending sales rising 7.2 percent to 15,909 sales.
Rising home sales and home prices means a greater impact on the region’s economy as well. Sales dollar volume in the Austin-Round Rock area was $5,073,874,678, an 11.5 percent increase from the first six months of 2015.

Single-family housing market activity continued to be strong in June 2016, with home sales jumping to 3,219 sales, an 8.5 percent increase compared to June 2015. Median price rose 8.2 percent to $295,500 during the same time frame. Monthly housing inventory remained unchanged at 2.5 months, which is less than half of the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University’s benchmark of 6.5 months as a balanced housing market.

City of Austin

Despite ongoing housing affordability challenges, single-family home sales in the City of Austin increased 3.4 percent to 4,465 home sales in the first half of 2016. Of the 21,036 single-family homes sold in the 18-county Central Texas region in the first half of 2016, approximately only one in five (21 percent) were sold within the Austin city limits. Median price increased 5.6 percent to $339,652 in the first half of the year, while active listings jumped 20.1 percent to 1,298 listings during the same time frame.

In June 2016, Austin home sales increased 2.6 percent to 975 home sales, while median price increased only 2.9 percent to $350,000. Monthly housing inventory increased 0.3 months to 2.1 months, while homes spent a little more than one month (32 days) on the market on average, an increase of two days from June 2015.

“The Central Texas housing market is performing very well, but extreme housing shortages across the region continue to be a challenge,” said Jim Gaines, Chief Economist at the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University. “Homes under $300,000 have less than two months of inventory in the Austin-Round Rock MSA, which means that housing at these price ranges is essentially nonexistent. The growing “donut effect” of homes sales activity as homebuyers move outside Austin city limits in search of more affordable housing is on pace to continue in the near future.”

Travis County

In the first half of 2016, Travis County single-family home sales increased 4.9 percent year-over-year to 7,203 home sales–nearly half of all single-family homes sold in the five-county MSA during the same time frame. In the meantime, median price increased 7.8 percent year-over-year to $330,000. In June 2016, single-family home sales increased 5.2 percent to 1,567 home sales, median price rose 10 percent to $357,500. However, monthly housing inventory stayed steady at 2.6 months.

Williamson County

Williamson County single-family home sales jumped 11.9 percent year-over-year to 1,140 home sales in June 2016, while median price rose 8.7 percent to $269,500 during the same time frame. Housing inventory dropped 0.2 months to 2.1 months of inventory in June 2016, making the housing shortage in Williamson County equally as critical as in the City of Austin.

In the first half of 2016, single-family home sales jumped 7.2 percent to 4,966 home sales, while median price rose 6.3 percent to $260,000. More homes were sold in Williamson County in the first half of the year than in the City of Austin (4,465 home sales year to date), despite having a population half the size of the City of Austin’s.

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Austin-area home prices set August record, outpace household income growth in August 2015

Austin Board of REALTORS® releases real estate statistics for August 2015

AUSTIN, Texas – September 22, 2015 – According to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) report released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR), Austin-area single-family home sales remained high in August, increasing eight percent to 2,943 home sales compared to August 2014. Austin-area single-family median home prices, for both sales and leasing, set a record for the month of August. Median home sales prices increased by eight percent year-over-year to $265,000, while median home lease payments increased by seven percent to $1,600.

Barb Cooper, 2015 President of the Austin Board of REALTORS¬®, explained, “As Austin REALTORS®, we’ve seen our city expand in ways we never could have imagined, but household incomes have not been expanding at the same rate as the cost of living in Austin. We will continue working with our city’s leaders to find a solution to the complex affordability issues, with the end of goal of providing affordable and diverse housing stock for our growing population that aligns with the actual incomes of Central Texas residents.”

Recent data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that approximately 65 percent of Austin-area professionals made less than $50,000 in 2014. Additionally, the City of Austin’s 2014 Comprehensive Housing Market Analysis cited that affordable housing costs should be less than 30 percent of gross monthly income.

That means for residents making $50,000 per year, a mortgage payment translates to $1,250 per month and would fall in a home sales price range of $200,000–$215,000. To compare, the August 2015 median home price was $265,000 and the median lease payment in Central Texas was $1,600.

Simultaneously, median home prices continue to rise and have increased by more than 30 percent from August 2010 to August 2015, a $65,000 difference over the last five years.

Average home price increased six percent compared to August 2014 to $329,620. Total dollar volume continued to rise year-over-year to $970,071,660, increasing by 15 percent.

Monthly housing inventory decreased by 0.1 months compared to August 2014, remaining flat at 2.9 months. This number is still well below the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University’s balanced housing inventory level of 6.5 months.

New listings increased two percent to 3,364 listings and active listings increased by four percent year-over-year to 6,979 listings. In addition, pending sales increased 11 percent to 2,686 single-family home sales. Homes remained on the market for 42 days in August 2015, the same length of time as in August 2014.

Cooper concluded, “This new report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics provides further evidence of the affordability issue in Central Texas. The growing disparity between rising home prices and what Austin residents can afford, combined with low inventory levels, will continue to drive residents outside of Austin’s city limits to buy a home, putting further strain on our region’s infrastructure and resources.”

August 2015 Statistics

•2943 – Single-family homes sold, eight percent more than August 2014.

•$265,000 – Median price for single-family homes, eight percent more than August 2014.

•$329,620 – Average price for single-family homes, six percent more than August 2014.

•42 – Average number of days single-family homes spent on the market, unchanged from August 2014.

•3,364 – New single-family home listings on the market, two percent more than August 2014.

•6,979 – Active single-family home listings on the market, four percent more than August 2014.

•2,686 – Pending sales for single-family homes, 11 percent more than August 2014.

•2.9 – Months of inventory* of single-family homes, 0.1 months less than August 2014.

•$970,071,660 – Total dollar volume of single-family properties sold, 15 percent more than August 2014.

The following sections describe trends in other sectors of the Austin-area real estate market.

Townhouses & Condominiums

The volume of townhouses and condominiums (condos) purchased in the Austin area in August 2015 was 305, a one percent increase from August 2014. The median price for condos was $225,500, which is five percent more than the same month of the prior year. These properties spent 37 days on market, or three more days than August 2014.

Leasing

In August 2015, a total of 2,080 properties were leased in Austin, which is three percent more than August 2014. Properties spent an average of 36 days on the market, or four fewer days than in August 2014. Active property listings increased by eight percent compared to August 2014, reaching 1,986.

The Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR) builds connections through the use of technology, education and advocacy to strengthen the careers of its 11,000 members and improve the lives of Central Texas families. We empower Austin REALTORS® to connect their clients to the region’s most complete, accurate and up-to-date listings data. For more, contact the ABoR Department of Public Affairs at
marketing@abor.com or 512-454-7636. For the latest local housing market listings, visit AustinHomeSearch.com.

* The inventory of homes for a market can be measured in months, which is defined as the number of active listings divided by the average sales per month of the prior 12 months. The Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University cites that 6.5 months of inventory represents a market in which supply and demand for homes is balanced.

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