Inventory remains critically low for most price classes
AUSTIN, TX–The Austin-area housing market’s declining inventory and robust sales trends are creating an increasingly competitive housing market across all price classes, according to the latest Central Texas Housing Market Report from the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR).
“In the Austin-Round Rock MSA, price classes across the board are seeing an increase in demand with a decrease in inventory,” Steve Crorey, 2018 president of the Austin Board of REALTORS®, said. “While new listings are up year-over-year, homes are selling faster than they can be listed on the market. This has led to a smaller number of active listings and an increasingly competitive market for homebuyers.”
Within the Austin-Round Rock MSA, new listings increased 5.6 percent to 4,139 listings; active listings decreased 2.8 percent to 6,154 listings; and pending sales rose 14.3 percent to 3,320 pending sales. The median price of single-family homes in the Austin-Round Rock MSA increased 3.8 percent year-over-year to $316,000 in April 2018. Housing inventory decreased 0.2 months year-over-year to 2.4 months of inventory during the same time frame.
“The desire to live in the city of Austin continues to drive home sales,” Mark Sprague, state director of information capital for Independence Title, said. “Inventory levels for luxury homes priced at $700,000 or higher have decreased year-over-year, and the inventory for homes priced under $500,000 continues to decline in Austin. As a result, we’re seeing locals purchase more homes in the suburbs. However, the real estate landscape continues to be strong compared to most major cities in the country.”
In the Austin-Round Rock MSA, homes priced between $150,000 and $250,000 stayed on the market, on average, fewer than 35 days. In the city of Austin, single-family homes in this price range spent, on average, between 20 and 33 days on the market in April 2018, indicating a continued inventory shortage amidst strong demand for this price category. The Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University cites the affordable threshold for entry-level homebuyers as $200,000 or less.
“If it’s a desirable home or located near a desirable location, especially if it’s in the city of Austin, the time spent on the market can be much lower,” Crorey said.
City of Austin
In the city of Austin, single-family homes spent an average of 37 days on the market, four more days than April 2017. Single-family home sales increased 7.4 percent from April 2017 to 859 sales and the median price for single-family home sales increased in April by 9.3 percent year-over-year to $390,000. Housing inventory decreased from 2.1 months of inventory in April 2017 to 1.7 months of inventory in April 2018.
In April, single-family home sales in Travis County increased 6.4 percent year-over-year to 1,324 sales. The median price for single-family homes in Travis County grew 7.1 percent year-over-year to $380,143 in April. Housing inventory decreased by 0.3 months from the previous April to 2.3 months of inventory.
In Pflugerville, sales decreased 11.9 percent to 104 home sales, while the median price of single-family homes increased 1.7 percent to $259,200.
Williamson County experienced a 7.6 percent increase in sales volume year-over-year to 904 home sales. During the same time frame, the median price for single-family homes increased 3.6 percent to $285,000. Inventory of single-family homes in Williamson County decreased slightly from last year’s 2.4 months of inventory to 2.3 months of inventory in April 2018.
In Leander, April home sales experienced no percentage change from year-over-year, remaining at 97 sales. The median price of single-family homes slightly increased 1.8 percent year-over-year to $280,000. In Cedar Park, April home sales volume decreased 11.9 percent to 89 sales. At the same time, the median price of Cedar Park homes increased 11.2 percent year-over-year to $339,000. Round Rock experienced a surge in sales from last April—30.9 percent—to 178 sales, while the median home price increased 8.1 percent to $275,000.
April home sales in Hays County decreased 8.5 percent to 281 home sales compared to the previous year. At the same time, median home price declined 6.8 percent to $247,000. Inventory of single-family homes in Hays County remained unchanged at 2.8 months of inventory from the previous April.
Locally, home sales in Buda dropped 19.6 percent year-over-year to 37 sales, but the median home price increased 14 percent to $285,000. Kyle experienced a double-digit increase in sales—an 11.9 percent increase to 75 sales—compared to the previous April. The median price increased 2.7 percent to $215,500 during the same time frame.
Crorey concluded: “If you’re planning on buying or selling a home this year, it’s important to enlist the help of a Central Texas REALTOR®. REALTORS® are local market experts who can walk clients through the necessary steps of the purchasing or selling process, and we ascribe to a Code of Ethics that requires us to advocate on our clients’ behalf and in their best interest. Homebuyers and sellers can find a Central Texas REALTOR® at AustinHomeSearch.com.