Most active real estate brokerages have current war stories about buyers being in bidding wars in this sellers’ market, and multiple offer situations. It’s been the case in some of my areas for over a year now, so hopefully the mass media has picked up on this and the penny is starting to drop. Me, I’m a real estate guy, and now is the time I’m looking to buy more investment properties in Austin. Let me just back up a moment – I’m always looking to buy investment properties at the right price, but this seems like a fine time to buy and hold rental properties. Here’s a brief pictorial view of the Austin Single Family Homes Market, courtesy of the data from the Multiple Listing System.
The first chart shows houses for sale under $500,000 – and the grey line for 2012 is higher than the yellow line for 2011 and about 17% down on the total number of home sales in 2006 – aka one of the boom years. All of the data here on this post relates to detached houses in the City of Austin, obtained from the MLS. Why under $500,000? It covers about 85% of the market. Taking a look at the upper end of the market below – over $500,000, you see the reverse:
2012 was a boom year for the over half million dollar home sellers, in terms of volume of sales at least, surpassing the rest of the years in all but one month. There’s an argument that says that rising prices have pushed more homes into the over $500,000 category since 2005, and it’s valid. Still, sales at the upper 15% of the market are brisk.
Sales volume is one indicator – another is actual median sales price, which is shown below.
The median sales price has been steadily rising in Austin, and this is in part due to the dramatic drop in homes for sale under $300,000 in 2008, when the active number of homes for sale plummeted as shown below. So even though less homes were selling, the median value of those on the market was higher. This was in part due to a restriction in financing rules, which aimed to keep the less qualified buyers from creating bad debt.
As I write this in June 2013, I’m hoping that the extreme sellers’ market is almost passed for the sake of all of the buyers who are getting frustrated. Markets don’t tend to stay out of balance too long, so I’m anticipating business as usual in 2014. Please get in touch if you would like to discuss the value of your home, or how to be a smart buyer in this market. 512 215 4785