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Updated Austin Market Dashboard - 06/29/11 10:39 PM
Residential market activity in the Austin metropolitan area is up. As of June 29, 2011, here is a high-level look at our residential market:
9,360 Active residential listings (single family homes, condominiums, and townhouses)
1,681 Sold in the past 30 days
At that pace, existing inventory will last about 5.6 months, compared with 6.5 months that most analysts consider a "balanced" market. This is really a minor difference. The characteristics of a strong Buyer's Market really become noticeable at about 8 months' inventory. A true Seller's Market becomes recognizable at about 4 months' supply. The Austin market remains (1 comments)
Signs of market growth in Austin - 06/29/11 10:38 PM
Market conditions for residential properties in the Austin/Central Texas area continue improve, and remain better than reports in the national media and far better than conditions in the metro markets that suffered most during the housing downturn over the past few years.
This recent article highlights an important point of reference:
Existing home sales lag, but some statistics point to upturn in Central Texas
I will update my Austin Market Dashboard shortly, but the highlight in that Austin American-Statesman piece is the emphasis on the number of pending contracts for single family homes at the end of May (0 comments)
Austin/Central Texas Home Sales -- May 2011 update - 06/20/11 12:42 PM
Final data for May 2011 is available this morning so I will be updating my Austin Market Dashboard this week. For now I just want to offer a quick summary. First, home sales (units) in Austin and Central Texas are still down year-over-year, about 10% from May 2010 to May 2011, but the gap was narrower last month, and the year-to-date trend is encouraging (data courtesy of the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University): Of course, monthly sales growth this time of year is normal, but "normal" seasonality has been a little less predictible in recent years than before 2007. (0 comments)
A recipe for delaying recovery - 06/16/11 10:40 AM
Hypothetical #1: You have decided it's time to move. You have been in your house for a few years, but it's now too small, or too large, or in the wrong location. We meet to discuss the process of selling your home. I'll go through a detailed market analysis with you and discuss preparation and staging and marketing, but before we get to the "meat" of the conversation I say, "I would love to list your home and get it sold, but before we begin you need to know that we're in the worst housing market in 80 years ...." Hypothetical #2: (2 comments)
Contrasting market values -- details matter - 06/16/11 09:34 AM
One of the ongoing services I offer my clients is assistance every year with market information needed to protest proposed new tax values. This year there have been some very obvious protests, and some new appraisals that were reasonably in tune with actual market value. One, however, provided a great example of how widely values can vary within a single market area. The request for help came from a client who owns an unimproved 1.8 acre lot in the hill country around Lake Travis, northwest of Austin. Here's a very brief summary of how that market analysis worked out: First, for a (2 comments)
Housing vs. new regulations -- not a pretty picture - 06/10/11 12:08 PM
Sometimes the only immediate response to the news is, "AARRGGGHHHHHH!" Here's an interesting pair of articles published by RISMedia: Owning a Home Essential to the American Dream, Survey Says From that piece: “An overwhelming 75 percent of the people who were polled said that owning a home is worth the risk of the fluctuations in the market, and 95 percent of the home owners said they are happy with their decision to own a home,” [NAHB Chairman Bob] Nielsen says. Against that backdrop, consider: Homeownership Under Attack? Those surveyed for the first article consider homeownership and a retirement savings account to (1 comments)
Home values still strong in Washington D.C., and in Austin - 06/10/11 11:19 AM
Austin, Texas and Washington, D.C. have a lot in common. Both are beautiful cities built on rivers that feature prominently in their ambience. They are also both capital cities, which has much to do with other aspects of the cities' character. Both offer moderate climates and active cultural and recreational opportunities. I love living in Austin, and I have enjoyed the time I have spent in the Washington area.
I can't write this without pointing out a couple of differences, though. First, the Texas Capitol building is almost 20 feet taller than the U.S. Capitol building (308 feet vs. 289 (0 comments)
Keep your eye on the target ... those sellers will come around - 06/04/11 08:08 PM
In a couple of recent posts I discussed the market environment in various price ranges around the Austin/Central Texas area, and pointed out that some market segments here are clearly moving well regardless of the "typical" price range in the area, while others are moving VERY slowly. (See Austin sales performance by price range, 05/07/11 and Austin/Central Texas market performance -- what's selling?, 05/10/11.) There is no direct correlation across the area between "market velocity" and price range.
The second of those posts included a table that showed the "Austin West-Westlake" region with the largest gap between the average list (0 comments)
Price right, Earn more! - 06/03/11 10:53 PM
An article I found today on TexasRealEstate.com prompts me to revisit a topic that I mentioned a few days ago, and many times before:
Prevent your house from languishing on the market
The important quote from the article, and a frequent conversation in my business is, "Some homesellers think it’s best to start high. You can always reduce the price if you don’t get any bites, right?"
The answer, of course, is, "Yes." It's your house. But keep a couple of things in mind: (1) It's a fact that what you have "in" your house has almost nothing (1 comments)
As always, I was curious about how Texas and Austin stack up compared to other metropolitan areas and to the national average. As a start, I went to the source data by MSA and charted the large cities listed in the article as the five most and five least affordable, along with Austin:
That chart shows the Housing Opportunity Index reported by the National Association of Home Builders and Wells Fargo, which measures the percentage of housing stock in a market area (0 comments)
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