Can Consumers Trust Market Data Received in the Mail?

Real Estate Agent with Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - 0480809

I really hate receiving real estate marketing flyers in the mail, especially when the data is wrong.  They are usually not factual and the average consumer doesn't know that they shouldn't believe what they read.

In yesterday's mail, I received a marketing piece from an agent that claimed he can "save my sellers and buyers thousands of dollars."  He never actually says how he can save them money, but he then talks "facts" about the immediate area.  He claims that in the "Lake Travis Southshore Area" that there are currently 552 active listings and 64 sold in February. He's trying to tell people that there is an 8.6 month absorption rate and that it indicates a "buyer's market" and that he can help the buyers get a deal on a property.

austin tx real estate statistics absorption rateI'm not exactly sure what he means by the "Lake Travis Southshore Area" as that's not a term that is used, but the areas that are bordering and south of Lake Travis are Lakeway, Bee Cave, and Spicewood.  Since I couldn't get his numbers to match up, I ran numbers with just the zip codes of 78734 (Lakeway and Travis County area near Lakeway) and 78738 (Bee Cave and The Hills) as well as numbers with 78734, 78738, & 78669 (Spicewood).

With just Lakeway and Bee Cave, there are currently 463 Active houses for sale. Through March, there were 253 pending and sold properties. That equates to about 84.3 sales a month, which is 5.49 months of inventory. That means, if no other properties came on the market and each current listing had to sell, it would take about 5 1/2 months to sell them all.  That's an absorption rate.

With Spicewood added into the mix, there are currently 657 Active houses for sale. Through March, there were 307 pending and sold properties. That equates to about 102.3 sales a month, which is 6.42 months of inventory.

What's my point?  My point is that a market is deemed to be "balanced" at approximately 6 months of revolving inventory.  I don't see how this agent can tell people that we are in a Buyer's Market with 8.6 months of inventory when it's just not true. I didn't eliminate builders' inventory homes. I didn't eliminate by age or size. I only did houses and not condos, but there aren't many condos in this area, so the numbers wouldn't change enough to add up to the numbers this agent is presenting.

If you receive marketing statistics in the mail, please have the sense to question the information presented. We are NOT in a buyer's market in the Austin TX Area. Sales have increased and overall, Austin is selling on average at 97.07% of asking price in 80 days, while the median is 97.7% of asking price in 50 days.

Buyer's Market? Really? It's more like a Supply and Demand issue as inventory shrinks and sellers are asking the right prices for their homes!

Call me if you would like factual information about the Austin Real Estate market.


**Are You Packed Yet?**

donna harris Realtor Austin TX blog

Donna Harris, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Austin Skyline

Austin TX Real Estate and the surrounding areas of Lakeway, Bee Cave, West Lake Hills, CedarPark, Round Rock, Spicewood, Circle-C, Steiner Ranch, and everywhere in between... Hill Country Austin TX Real Estate and beyond. Whether you're buying or selling an Austin home, I'll be with you every step of the way. 

For real time Austin TX listings,click here.

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Fred Carver Personal Real Estate Corporation
RE/MAX Camosun Victoria BC Real Estate - Victoria, BC
Accredited Real Estate Consultant

Hi Donna...reminds me of the Press twisting the Truth, as we all know talk to your Realtor. Unless the Local Press picks up on his Info, not likely Consumers will determine the Absorption time etc..Send out your Newsletter and go into detail why and how it's a balanced market and pricing is still critical.



Apr 11, 2012 02:20 AM #1
Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner
Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Broker 949-510-2395 - Mission Viejo, CA
Orange County & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395

Sometimes you can and sometimes you can't. Consumers need to realize it's just marketing and to do their own research.

Apr 11, 2012 04:18 AM #2
Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth

Donna, so often some of these agents fluff things up to their own liking. I am glad that you shine the light on the real facts for the area.

Apr 11, 2012 04:19 AM #3
Emily Medvec
Realty One of Santa Fe - Santa Fe, NM
Realtor | Serving Santa Fe & Northern NM

Your blog reaches more people than those flyers. Keep telling the story online. Excellent presentation of the facts. In the end, the sellers and buyers will know who to trust.

Apr 11, 2012 04:54 AM #4
Donna Harris
Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - - Austin, TX
Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator

Fred, I would, but paper newsletters are so 2003.

Karen, Exactly! Just Marketing to grab attention, even if it's negative attention.

Gary, But I'm not sure what benefit an agent has to tell sellers/home owners it's a buyer's market...

Emily, I sure hope so!

Apr 11, 2012 05:20 AM #5
Jim Patton
Century 21 M&M - 209-404-0816 - Turlock, CA
Realtor - Stanislaus & Merced county Realtor.

Great post Donna.  More and more parts of the country are sellers markets but you sure don't hear much about it in the news.  As for the agent that sent the flyer, not all agents are honest ufortunately.  As soon as an agent starts claiming that he can save you thousands of dollars red flags should start going up. 

Apr 11, 2012 07:19 AM #6
Donna Harris
Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - - Austin, TX
Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator

Jim, I'm surprised each time I hear about a good market because we definitely don't hear about it on the news.

Apr 14, 2012 11:09 PM #7
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Donna Harris

Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
Are you Packed for Austin? I can help!!
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