Austin-area home sales dip, year-over-year housing inventory rises for first time in three years

Austin-area home sales took a small step back in July 2014, with 2,944 single-family homes sold, down 3% from July 2013. Believe it or not, this marks the first decrease in home sales since May 2011. Also breaking trends, the monthly housing inventory increased year-over-year for the first time in three years!

“July 2013 had the highest monthly home sales volume in Austin’s history,” 2014 ABoR President Bill Evans explained. “So we knew it was going to be a tough month to beat. However, there’s no denying that the Austin-area housing market has been impacted by issues in inventory and affordability. With such high demand, the Austin-area housing market cannot grow without an increasing, continually replenished housing stock, but that housing stock must also be affordable and attainable for Austin homebuyers.”

An increase in housing stock would be a boon to home prices, which have steadily increased over the last few years. With a housing inventory of 3.0 months, the hope for more housing looks promising, although it is still well short of the accepted healthy housing stock of 6.5 months.

“Now, more than ever, managed growth and planned development are important for ongoing affordability and livability in Austin,” Evans continued. “As the City of Austin overhauls the Land Development Code that will dictate what development and housing is allowed as we continue to grow, we have to ask ourselves, ‘Is this the right kind of home for Austin’s housing market and do our regulations allow for it?’”

Here’s a closer look at the July 2014 statistics:

  • 2,944 – Single-family homes sold, three percent less than July 2013.
  • $250,000 – Median price for single-family homes, nine percent more than July 2013.
  • $318,854 – Average price for single-family homes, seven percent more than July 2013.
  • 39 – Average number of days single-family homes spent on the market, two days fewer than July 2013.
  • 3,788 – New single-family home listings on the market, eight percent more than July 2013.
  • 6,859 – Active single-family home listings on the market, 12 percent more than July 2013.
  • 2,660 – Pending sales for single-family homes, four percent less than July 2013.
  • 3.0 – Months of inventory* of single-family homes, 0.2 months more than July 2013.
  • $938,706,176 – Total dollar volume of single-family properties sold, four percent more than July 2013.

You may notice that the average days on market dropped under 40 days, meaning it’s a competitive market out there. You’ll want to work with your REALTOR® to assist you as you search for your new home. With some listings lasting just days on the market, you’ll want to work closely with your REALTOR® to make sure you’re ready to make an offer that will stand out among the crowd.

“Amid questions about the direction of Austin’s market, we don’t believe this small decrease in home sales is indicative of a negative trend,” Evans concluded. “The high demand for Austin real estate over the last few years continues to be fueled by strong job and economic growth in the Austin area. The issue we’re facing now is not whether Austin-area property values will fall, but whether future housing market growth in the Austin area will be stifled by a lack of affordable housing options for Austin-area homebuyers.”

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