According to the Houston Association of Realtors, in May the Houston housing market experienced the largest one-month sales volume in seven years. May marked the city’s 24th consecutive month of positive sales. Single-family home sales increased 28 percent over last year to 7,794. The sales of all property types also increased 28 percent to 9,245.
In addition, median home prices and average home prices for single-family houses were recorded at an all-time high in May. The median price increased 11.9 percent to $188,000. The average price increased 9 percent to $256,790.
The total dollar volume for all property sold increased 38.1 percent to almost $2.25 billion. With the exception of homes priced less than $80,000, all price segments experienced an increase in sales.
Forward-looking indicators continue to show an improvement in the housing market. The number of total pending sales at the end of May increased 14.3 percent. And, the number of active listings decreased 23.8 percent from May of last year.
The inventory for single-family homes decreased 40.6 percent down to 3.3 months. Danny Frank, HAR chairman with Prudential Anderson Properties said, “We continue to see multiple offers on homes, in many cases before the ink is even dried on the listings. There are also many cash offers.”
According to David Jarvis, regional director of Houston-based Metrostudy, the past few years have reflected the strength of residential development in the greater Houston area. He said, “Houston is now starting 25,000 new homes a year. We’re going through a building boom.”
In the first quarter of 2013 Metrostudy survey, it was recorded that 8,067 homes were under construction, which was an increase of 704 when compared to the end of 2012. The number of active model homes also decreased to 803. The total number of new homes in the first quarter of 2013 was 12,240 homes. And, most homes were purchased before construction was completed.
Jarvis said, that the supply of finished vacant homes on the market was at 1.9 months, which was an all-time low. He said, “In fact, the market currently has more than twice as many homes under construction as it has homes sitting finished and vacant. The sizable difference between these two categories of inventory confirms the ability of builders to tighten their inventory over the last nine quarters and highlights the vigorous new home demand present in Houston.”
Jarvis also said, “Job growth, tight inventory on resale homes, and low interest rates will all be important factors are all important factors that have contributed to a very impressive first quarter of 201 for the single-family home market in Houston.”