Home Sales Growth Stalls in September, Remains Strong Year-to-Date
AUSTIN, TX – Single-family home sales growth across the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) was flat last month but did not impact strong year-to-date home sales numbers, according to data released today by the Austin Board of REALTORS® in its September 2018 Central Texas Housing Market Report.
“Austin-area housing market activity has bucked the trend of a cool-weather slowdown over the last several years, maintaining much of the momentum from the summer months through the end of the year,” Steve Crorey, 2018 president of the Austin Board of REALTORS®, said. “Home sales growth declined five percent last September, so it’s good to see that the area housing market held steady in September 2018. Austin continues to be one of the fastest-growing markets and most competitive housing markets in the country.”
Austin-Round Rock MSA
In the five-county MSA, sales volume decreased 0.9 percent year over year from 2,390 sales in September 2017 to 2,368 sales last month. Year to date, home sales in the Austin-Round Rock MSA are up 3.6 percent from the first nine months of 2017.
Sales dollar volume increased 5.7 percent year over year to $905,577,673. This growth is partially due to a 4.2 percent increase in median home price from $290,000 to $302,250. High demand across the MSA and limited inventory pushed the median home price above $300,000, which is a first for the month of September.
New listings for the Austin-Round Rock metro area decreased 2.4 percent year over year to 2,790 listings in September. During the same period, active listings increased 5.1 percent to 7,706 listings and pending sales increased 3.3 percent to 2,362 pending sales. Inventory remained unchanged year over year at 3.0 months, which could also have stifled home sales activity last month.
Lawrence Yun, chief economist and senior vice president of research at the National Association of REALTORS®, indicated that the flat sales growth in the Austin area could be due to rising interest rates.
“Higher interest rates have cut affordability and are holding back home sales,” Yun said. “But steady growth in jobs and income will boost housing demand over time. Increasing housing supply as reflected in higher housing permits will also help slow home price growth and help consumers.”
City of Austin
In the city of Austin, home sales growth remained relatively unchanged with a 0.9 percent decrease from 708 home sales in September 2017 to 702 home sales last month. During the same period, sales dollar volume increased 8.3 percent to $324,865,480. This growth is partially due to a year-over-year increase in median home price from $353,500 to $365,000. New listings decreased 11.3 percent to 803 listings; active listings decreased 11.8 percent to 1,660 listings; and pending sales increased 4.6 percent to 703 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased by 0.3 months to 2.1 months of inventory.
In Travis County, September single-family home sales slightly increased 1.7 percent year over year to 1,151 home sales; sales dollar volume increased 8.2 percent to $523,502,042. The median price for single-family homes rose 4.8 percent to $351,000. During the same period, new listings decreased 5.7 percent to 1,360 listings; active listings decreased 2.4 percent to 3,516 listings; and pending sales increased 5.1 percent to 1,162 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory decreased 0.2 months year over year to 2.8 months of inventory.
This September, Williamson County single-family home sales decreased 9.1 percent to 805 home sales, while sales dollar volume decreased 4.2 percent to $251,413,411. During the same period, the median price for single-family homes increased 2.2 percent to $275,978. New listings increased 1.6 percent to 951 listings; active listings increased 11.8 percent to 2,685 listings; and pending sales decreased 2.2 percent to 805 pending sales. Housing inventory increased 0.2 months year over year to 3.0 months of inventory.
Hays County single-family home sales rose 10.8 percent to 297 sales in September, as sales dollar volume experienced a double-digit increase of 16.3 percent to $101,038,355. The median price for a single-family homes increased 3.4 percent to $258,500. During the same period, new listings rose 3.6 percent to 343 listings; active listings increased 9.9 percent to 1,043 listings; and pending sales increased 4.4 percent to 283 pending sales. Housing inventory increased 0.1 months to 3.5 months of inventory.